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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Lord of the Rings:
Legolas and the Urukai

The Shire

Jan 6 2009, 5:43pm

Post #1 of 14 (815 views)
Legolas and the Urukai Can't Post

I don't know if this was ever covered by this forum (and pardon me if it is an old and boring observation) but i wondered, in FOTR, when Legolas senses the Urukai following the Fellowship along the river, whether he can sense them because the Urukai are a--what was the phrase?--"a ruined and terrible"(?) form of life, the broken descendents of Elves themselves? It seemed that the Urukai could sense the Fellowship as well, or am i reading too much into that scene?


Jan 6 2009, 6:49pm

Post #2 of 14 (643 views)
well, that question hasn't been asked lately anyway! [In reply to] Can't Post

And I can't recall the last time it was, so it must be time to ask it again!

I don't know if they ever explain how exactly Legolas knows about the Uruks -- they do try to portray him as having "super senses" though, keener eyesight, hearing, agility, accuracy, etc. I always figured that he just used his elf-sense (kind of like Spiderman's spidey-sense) to tune into the Uruk-hai channel....

There's no real explanation as to how the Uruks can track them either -- so maybe you are on to something with your thinking that it's the elven strain in both of them at work. I can tell you that in my RL, I grew up in a very strong ethnic community, which I have long been far away from. When I have returned there for visits, I do have a very tangible sense of reconnecting with people who are more like me -- it was the kind of thing I would never have noticed had I not been away for awhile, as it was a sort of background genetic connection that I took for granted when living there. I don't seen any reason while the elves and Uruks have that sort of bond but on a stronger level...

Interesting question to speculate on! Thanks for posing it anew and glad to have you here to do that!


Goldberry of the river

Jan 6 2009, 7:10pm

Post #3 of 14 (646 views)
Good question! [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm not sure whether he saw them or sensed their presence. He looked towards the shore and reacted and then it cut to Lurtz 'roaring' as it were,lol, as if he knew that Legolas had seen him. Or it could be that Lurtz sensed that Legolas has sensed them and was perhaps angry they had been discovered. And as weaver said, it could also be the race connection.

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Formerly known as Rosie!

Superuser / Moderator

Jan 6 2009, 7:25pm

Post #4 of 14 (672 views)
A very good question! [In reply to] Can't Post

In Reply To
It seemed that the Urukai could sense the Fellowship as well, or am i reading too much into that scene?

I don't think this has ever been raised on TORN. Legolas's extra-sensory abilities we already know, but I don't think Lurtz's spidey-sense was ever picked up on as being unusual.

In the film-verse, it might well be that the Elven ability is still functional within some of the Uruk-hai. It's certainly a plausible explanation.

Celebrimbor: "Pretty rings..."
Dwarves: "Pretty rings..."
Men: "Pretty rings..."
Sauron: "Mine's better."

"Ah, how ironic, the addictive qualities of Sauronís master weapon led to its own destruction. Which just goes to show, kids - if you want two small and noble souls to succeed on a mission of dire importance... send an evil-minded b*****d with them too." - Gandalf's Diaries, final par, by Ufthak.

Ataahua's stories


Jan 6 2009, 8:35pm

Post #5 of 14 (642 views)
Conflicting evidence [In reply to] Can't Post

At Parth Galen, Legolas implies that he senses danger only in general terms: "A shadow and a threat has been growing in my mind. Something draws near...I can feel it!" Still, he gets a clearer signal than Aragorn, who thinks Legolas is picking up the danger signals from the orc patrols on the other side of the River.

But when Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli are on the trail of the Uruk-hai in TTT, it's Aragorn who puts his ear to the ground to listen for them. So maybe Legolas' instinct is for danger, but it takes Aragorn's tracker skills to follow the orcs accurately.

As for whether Lurtz can sense Legolas, I doubt it - the roar after Legolas appears to sense him could be no more than the kind of gag where the juxtaposition of images only makes it seem like there's a connection. PJ talks about it in the scene where the Ringwraiths appear to stab the sleeping hobbits:

I like this gag where we deliberately made people think that these hobbits were asleep, and itís a cheap and cheesy one, but itís always good value, doing this type of stuff. Itís what cinema can do so well. You canít really do it in a book, but in movies you can, where you can juxtapose places and time...

So who knows? Maybe Legolas and Lurtz can sense each other, or maybe the filmmakers are just messing with our minds...

One thing - the orcs in TTT only know they are being followed when they get wind of the smell of 'man-flesh' - they don't seem to sense Legolas at all, all they get is a whiff of the unwashed Aragorn!


Farewell, friends! I hear the call.
The shipís beside the stony wall.
Foam is white and waves are grey;
beyond the sunset leads my way.
Bilbo's Last Song

Tol Eressea

Jan 6 2009, 9:11pm

Post #6 of 14 (607 views)
Interesting! [In reply to] Can't Post

I'd always thought Legolas had become unsettled when he heard/saw the birds cry out and fly away, taking it to be a signal of danger. But I like the idea of the Elf connection... it's not one that had occurred to me before!

*Jazminatar the Brown*

Tol Eressea

Jan 6 2009, 9:22pm

Post #7 of 14 (588 views)
Good one! [In reply to] Can't Post

I love that after all this time, there are still new things to discover in the films. Smile

I would agree with the others - perhaps Lurtz still has enough 'elf' left in him to have that connection with Legolas.

"...and back again."


Jan 6 2009, 9:24pm

Post #8 of 14 (604 views)
i never saw that connection [In reply to] Can't Post

i always saw it as a 'race' that the editors kept cutting back and forth betwixt the two. neither knows the other is heading to place A, but the audience is kept enthralled as they know that if the good guys don't get there first bad things are going to happen.


Jan 7 2009, 12:56am

Post #9 of 14 (572 views)
Same [In reply to] Can't Post

I always thought it was the bird thing too, but I like the idea of the 'Elven' connection between the two. There are so many layers of meaning and interpretation.


Jan 7 2009, 6:06am

Post #10 of 14 (818 views)
I agree with that [In reply to] Can't Post

There seems to be no connection. Of course, the assumption is that Saruman knew quite well where the fellowship was heading, possibly by using the palantir.

"I am going home now to put my notes in order" - Frodo


Jan 7 2009, 1:17pm

Post #11 of 14 (561 views)
Nice One! [In reply to] Can't Post

Good Question!

I had the impression that Legolas was alerted through his senses, like a intuitive warning that there was danger around, or that he was being 'looked at' (you know that feeling?), and this is what made him super alert and with his keen eye sight peer to the bank (and much further) to glimpse the Urak-hai. I thought Lurtz was unable to see Legolas but could sense his gaze - so in a way there is a connection between what is happening there.
I also agree that we may have seen a shift in space and time in that part of the movie (the way PJ said he could manipulate the scene on film), but it worked for me! Laugh

Elven x


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Grey Havens

Jan 7 2009, 3:27pm

Post #12 of 14 (561 views)
I think it's just Legolas and his Elven abilities [In reply to] Can't Post

Same when he senses and actually says that the "White Wizard is approaching". He hasn't seen him but he knows it's him. Legolas, and I think all the Elves, have sharper, keener senses. They are able to "see" beyond the regular seeing. He knows when Sauron "enetered" the room through the Pollantir although he hadn't seen Pippin taking it. And apparently it's true not only about Orcs and evil spirits, but about Wizards as well. So, I think Legolas "saw" Lurtz and the orcs in his mind. His senses told him something/someone is following them, he may actually knew it was the orcs and that's why he advised the Fellowship to not remain where they stopped to rest - this little stony spot next to the river. I think he could foresee some things too. Like the danger coming. Same happened in Moria when the Balrog was approaching. In the book it's even clearer that Legolas knows.

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Culinary journey through Middle Earth continues! Join us on December 15 on the Main board

I believe


Jan 13 2009, 10:00am

Post #13 of 14 (522 views)
I like your thinking [In reply to] Can't Post

and I'd bet it's a factor, fersher. Legolas has the Elven sensitivities, and also is aware of the mood of Fangorn when they enter and of the Dead when they approach the Paths of the Dead. He seemed surprised to see the Balrog, but they were surrounded by Orcs and the heaviness of Moria itself.


"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."

I really need these new films to take me back to, and not re-introduce me to, that magical world.

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Jan 15 2009, 1:14pm

Post #14 of 14 (538 views)
Legolas [In reply to] Can't Post

In Reply To
I don't know if this was ever covered by this forum (and pardon me if it is an old and boring observation) but i wondered, in FOTR, when Legolas senses the Urukai following the Fellowship along the river, whether he can sense them because the Urukai are a--what was the phrase?--"a ruined and terrible"(?) form of life, the broken descendents of Elves themselves? It seemed that the Urukai could sense the Fellowship as well, or am i reading too much into that scene?

No, I don't think that it's because the Urukai were Elves before the were ruined by the dark powers.
In general elves are very wise and very sensitive about what is going on around them and also elsewhere.
Remember when in the 'Two Towers' Legolas looks at the sun and says "Blood has been spilled tonight"?
He was blessed with special wisdom and sensitivities that enabled him to see, know and detect things that others could not. I believe that was the reason why he knew the Urukai were approaching.



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