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First-viewer's report?
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sador
Half-elven


Jan 9 2011, 11:35am

Post #51 of 72 (344 views)
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The Chamber of Mazarbul to Lothlorien: a question, and a spoiler. [In reply to] Can't Post

Frankly, I am quite tired by now of writing about ‘my son’ all the time. Perhaps I should adopt a name for him? If I so, I think of calling him “Elboron”. After all, this is the screename I originally wanted, and isn’t it just like a father – wishing upon their sons things they have failed to acheive themselves? Cool What do you folks think about this idea?


The last sitting (Wednsday evening) began with going through the menu and looking for the next chapter. As I’ve mentioned before, the young boy is now beginning to learn English; and as I was about to start, he asked “It says Balin, doesn’t it? What does this mean – have they reached Balin’s tomb?”
Well, I was astonished; but had to admit he was right.

Inside the Chamber of Mazarbul (which I think isn’t named in the movie) – he was interested in the story told in the book, but luckily wasn’t bothered by technical details, such as Glamdring not shining (which most people notice) and the existence of dwarf corpses (which people usually don’t). I mean – based on what we know of orcs and trolls, wouldn’t they have eaten their vanquished enemies? Shocked I’m glad he didn’t think of that difficulty.

I’ve always felt that Pippin’s dropping the skeleton down the well was a bit too much; but perhaps it serves to teach that this was not pure stupidity, but childlike carelessness. As my son commented, this was Pippin’s third time of bringing foes upon them by lack of caution – after Bree and the Lake outside the Gate.
I also wonder about the short time it takes the orcs to identify where the Fellowship are. Perhaps the day it takes in the books seems a bit too long (although it takes no genius to guess they would head east, and preparing a nice surprise in the Second Hall give time enough to round them up eventually) – but massing the army and getting there instantly seems a bit too much for me. But this detail also escaped the ardent freshman’s attention.

He liked the battle, and didn’t mind the cave-troll (although he didn’t recognize it immediately). For some reason he didn’t believe Frodo would die so soon. When the troll was finally shot, he just heaved a sigh and said “at last!” He was also excited by the name “Khazad-dum”, as the first word in Khuzdul he gets to know.

I had another slip later, when I told him I considered the whole sequence of the flight back to the Hall, and the stairs a bit over the top. But honestly – does this make any architectural sense?
Anyway, when the orcs swarmed up and surrounded the Fellowship, my son asked if that is why Gandalf was supposed to fear Moria – or was there worse yet to come? Heh. And when the Balrog appeared, he asked if Gandalf sees something we aren’t shown? A good question, and within the framework of the movie I would tend to say that he doesn’t, but as Saruman intimated, he knew a Balrog dwelt in Moria and realized the demon was up and about. On the morrow, when discussing this, I suggested that perhaps Gandalf led the Fellowship to the upper levels to avoid that dweller in the deeps.
A third question was why did Gandalf tell Aragorn to lead on? I asked what the alternative was, and he said that all along it seems as if he consulted with Frodo more than anyone else. Ha! Frodo was, of course, totally clueless – but perhaps the focus on his part in the decision-making, while being good for the drama, made really little sense. He also commented that so far Legolas was the Fellowship’s MVP. Yeah – another one joins the club!

Later, he had quite a few questions to ask about logistics, and the tactics of Balin’s followers’ last stand. How did the dwarves establish a colony, if Moria was infested by orcs? I answered that the orcs weren’t there when Balin came, and had to remind him that after the Battle of Five Armies the Misty Mountains were considered to be free of them. And the Balrog? Well, it must have been asleep – but that led to querries about “Too deep the dwarves had delved”.

Regarding the Balrog and the battle of the bridge – he asked whether that was the “Shadow and Flame” Saruman mentioned; so I asked whether it looks like the figure in Saruman’s book? And he said yes, especially the eyes. Hmm. I have to admit I never noticed them myself. Surprisingly enough, he wasn’t devastated by Gandalf’s fall. I really wonder why (I was actually worried about his reaction to this scene). Did he remember Saruman’s prophecy about Gandalf chosing death? I didn’t get that connection until several viewings, and my son said nothing about it.

In Lothlorien – as soon as the Elvish archers appeared, he exclaimed “wood-elves!” Apparantly this reminded him of the scene in Barrels out of Bond, in which the twelve dwarves are captured. But in The Hobbit Bilbo has the time to slip on the Ring and disappear without being noticed – how will PJ pull this one without making the Mirkwood elves seem clumsy and inept?

I must say that Aragorn and Haldir’s argument was pretty effective, in giving the others the opportunity to wait for their doom. I really like the invented conversation in which Boromir tried to comfort Frodo. But it doesn’t make much sense that Haldir would know that Frodo carried a great evil with him, does it? Luckily, this went unnoticed – and so we made it to the view of Caras Galadhon, where we stopped until the next time.


A last funny thing happened on Friday night, when one of my daughters had invented a new dance, and not only wanted us to see it, but also to teach her sisters it. it is a wild improvisation, which she won’t be able to do again today; but the funny thing was that she called it “the dance of the trees” (the kids have seen Fantasia recently, which perhaps is to blame). So I asked her had she ever seen dancing trees? To which my better half replied “maybe Ents”. Now that came just out of the left field, as I have completely forgotten that wife had actually read the books and liked them. And even worse was the young ‘un’s pouncing on the hint, and excitedly asking “will there be walking trees in The Lord of the Rings?” Sly

"Let me think!" - Aragorn.

The weekly discussion of The Lord of the Rings is back! Please join us in the Reading Room for Book III.

"Do you mourn the loss of Boromir?"
- Finding Frodo.



entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jan 9 2011, 2:32pm

Post #52 of 72 (271 views)
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I like Elboron [In reply to] Can't Post

and maybe, when he's old enough, he can post with that name!

Funny that your son wasn't devastated by Gandalf's fall. I first read the books when I was about 13 and I cried over that. But it's also interesting that he considers Frodo a candidate to lead the Fellowship. I wonder if other movie-firsters had a similar reaction?

I saw the resemblance to the Balrog in Saruman's book. Some folks here on TORN have seen that actual book - I can't remember who, though. They were able to page through it and there are many pages in the book that were never shown in the movie. I would PAY to have a copy, as well as a copy of the Bilbo's Red Book.


Magpie
Immortal


Jan 9 2011, 2:40pm

Post #53 of 72 (290 views)
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over the top [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
I had another slip later, when I told him I considered the whole sequence of the flight back to the Hall, and the stairs a bit over the top. But honestly – does this make any architectural sense?



If one is watching the movies on a regular basis (as I did), one has to have a 'bathroom break'. Very quickly, this segment in Moria became my bathroom break. I even don't like the music for this sequence much because of my general annoyance with the scene itself.


LOTR soundtrack website
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Ataahua
Superuser / Moderator


Jan 9 2011, 6:46pm

Post #54 of 72 (259 views)
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Ha! [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
So I asked her had she ever seen dancing trees? To which my better half replied “maybe Ents”.



Reminds me of a slip-up by Aunt Petunia in the Harry Potter novels, when the avowed wizard-denier muttered 'Azkaban' - to the astonishment of all. :D

When I look at the stairs in Moria I don't think about their practicality but about what that design says about Dwarves: That they are grand thinkers, boastful, ignore space in favour of large statements and don't in any way think of themselves as being small. In this, the stairs fit the aesthetic of the many-pillared hall.

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

"Ah, how ironic, the addictive qualities of Sauron’s 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


SirDennisC
Half-elven


Jan 9 2011, 7:36pm

Post #55 of 72 (281 views)
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Elboron seems about right... [In reply to] Can't Post

And a fitting gesture on your part.

I would love to have read how you would have handled this bit:

Quote
I mean – based on what we know of orcs and trolls, wouldn’t they have eaten their vanquished enemies? Shocked I’m glad he didn’t think of that difficulty.


Perhaps you should rewatch the scene -- the music is reason enough for a second viewing. Angelic



(This post was edited by SirDennisC on Jan 9 2011, 7:36pm)


FarFromHome
Valinor


Jan 9 2011, 10:33pm

Post #56 of 72 (301 views)
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Elboron is very appropriate [In reply to] Can't Post

for the son of someone who's as learned and courteous as Faramir! Smile

Does the architecture of Moria make any architectural sense? Well, I suppose as much architectural sense as any other underground kingdom I've ever seen...

Tongue

The dwarves, after all, aren't just making a mundane, practical mine - they're making a statement! The whole sequence is over the top really, but maybe it's necessary to build up the drama ready for the Balrog sequence. I think it's probably pretty effective for first-time viewers, especially movie-firsters who aren't being distracted by what they already know from the book. Your son has one advantage that you and I could never have - he can be a true movie-firster. I would think that avoiding giving him too much book-knowledge would enhance this experience. He'll have plenty of time to appreciate the book later, after all.



Quote
A third question was why did Gandalf tell Aragorn to lead on?


A good question with no good answer in the movie, I think! In the book, this exchange with Aragorn ("swords are no more use here") occurs when Gandalf stays behind in the Chamber of Mazarbul to confront the (so far unseen) Balrog for the first time. In the movie, the exchange doesn't make much sense because only a few minutes later they come to the broken bridge and Gandalf jumps across first, leaving Aragorn and Frodo to last. If the line could have been placed a bit later, as the Company reach the Bridge of Khazad-Dum, it might have made a bit more sense.


Quote
In Lothlorien – as soon as the Elvish archers appeared, he exclaimed “wood-elves!” Apparantly this reminded him of the scene in Barrels out of Bond, in which the twelve dwarves are captured. But in The Hobbit Bilbo has the time to slip on the Ring and disappear without being noticed – how will PJ pull this one without making the Mirkwood elves seem clumsy and inept?


Well, they're not really wood-elves but High Elves, as I suppose your son will figure out at some point. The Mirkwood elves should be a bit clumsier than the Lothlorien elves, I suppose. And anyway, with all those Dwarves around him, Bilbo should be able to disappear without it looking too obvious, wouldn't you think?


Quote
But it doesn’t make much sense that Haldir would know that Frodo carried a great evil with him, does it?


Haldir could have been briefed about the Quest already - but if so, he wasn't expecting to have to give the Company shelter in Lothlorien. Galadriel is a much more ambiguous character in the movie. I can imagine well enough that orders might have gone out to say that a Company carrying a dangerous burden might attempt to cross the Golden Wood. Those orders clearly didn't include offering asylum in Caras Galadhon, though, that's for sure.

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



sador
Half-elven


Jan 10 2011, 9:31pm

Post #57 of 72 (238 views)
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Very well, then; he will be Elboron. [In reply to] Can't Post

I doubt that he will post under that name when he grows up; but then, I would call anyone who suggested four years ago how much involved in TORn I will get, a raving lunatic. So time will tell.

I also remember someone posting here the contents of Saruman's book. They were pretty interesting and thought-out - even though they knew those pages would never be shown. That's a major reason I love those films, despite the flaws I might find in them.
But alas, I could not find that old post or recall who wrote it.

"Let me think!" - Aragorn.

The weekly discussion of The Lord of the Rings is back! Please join us in the Reading Room for Book III.

"Do you mourn the loss of Boromir?"
- Finding Frodo.



(This post was edited by sador on Jan 10 2011, 9:31pm)


Magpie
Immortal


Jan 11 2011, 12:06am

Post #58 of 72 (233 views)
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let me dig around in my nest [In reply to] Can't Post

although, I think I knew where they can be found. Let me go look.

Is this what you were thinking of?


But in looking through my collections, I have something that might be different than Ryszard's site. I'm not going to make sure I follow all links to see just what Ryszard has.

I not only saved this on my harddrive, I saved a link to the original post. Dang I love being organized.

The Book of Saruman by Urambo Tauro


LOTR soundtrack website
magpie avatar gallery ~ Torn Image Posting Guide


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jan 11 2011, 2:56am

Post #59 of 72 (233 views)
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Who, me? [In reply to] Can't Post

Assign hobbity characteristics to you? Angelic

After reading of the tra-la-lally Elves in Rivendell in The Hobbit, your son must have been disappointed in the "somber and gloomy" Elves in the LotR movies!

I wonder why there was such a problem with the name "Moria", since the pronunciation differs from that for "Moriah", and one would think that some simple spelling change or placement of something like an accent mark could have emphasized that.

Ah, the "Background Talk"! It sounds like you gave him a nice concise version, just enough so it wouldn't boggle his mind, yet it still provided what he needed for the answer to a valid question: if they're Dwarf doors, then why is the writing in Elvish.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915




entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jan 11 2011, 3:21am

Post #60 of 72 (227 views)
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Someone on TORN [In reply to] Can't Post

has actually seen the original book, but I can't remember who it is. He/she was allowed to see it, but had to return it after a short time, and of course could not take photographs.


sador
Half-elven


Jan 11 2011, 9:47am

Post #61 of 72 (221 views)
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Thank you! [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, regarding your and Ataahua's explanation of the stairs architecture - well, while I might understand it in symbolic terms, a major component of the charm the movies have for me is the attempt to make the places as realistic as possible; having this kind of architecture just spoils it for me.
Like the Witch-king's bombastic flail at the Pelennor Fields.


And the Lothlorien elves were wood-elves! Haldir spoke with Legolas in the Silvan tongue, and this is emphasized in appendix F. Legolas lamented for the lost High-elves which were not his kin when the company came to Eregion.

"Let me think!" - Aragorn.

The weekly discussion of The Lord of the Rings is back! Please join us in the Reading Room for Book III.

"Do you mourn the loss of Boromir?"
- Finding Frodo.



sador
Half-elven


Jan 11 2011, 9:52am

Post #62 of 72 (216 views)
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Thank you! [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes, that's what I meant. Although I wonder how I got to read this thread - Urambo Tauro posted it before I joined. Perhaps his last question was by chance the last post in the Movie Boards when I logged in, and so I caught it?

Thank you again!

"Let me think!" - Aragorn.

The weekly discussion of The Lord of the Rings is back! Please join us in the Reading Room for Book III.

"Do you mourn the loss of Boromir?"
- Finding Frodo.



FarFromHome
Valinor


Jan 11 2011, 10:11am

Post #63 of 72 (243 views)
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Thanks for correcting me [In reply to] Can't Post

about the Lothlorien Elves. Struggling to recall the details, but am I right in remembering that it's only the rulers of Lothlorien who are High Elves? It seems to me, though, that even if these Elves are all the same people, there might be a difference in their organisation and training?

As for the architecture, I don't really know how to judge the "realism" of anything in Moria. What's "realistic" about the many-pillared hall, which is described in detail by Tolkien? I think it was Alan Lee who originally drew that stairway, putting a small crack in it as a detail, and Jackson riffed on that crack in the stone. Does Alan Lee normally draw sufficiently "realistic" architecture for your taste? I'm no judge, because I'm afraid all the fantasy architecture looks "fantasy" to me, and I've just had to get over it! But I guess I'd seen enough of Alan Lee and John Howe's work to accept it as the way Middle-earth is supposed to look...

Tongue

(That flail didn't really bother me particularly either - I liked the supernatural weight of it, as suggested by the sound it made as it fell - until I saw the bit where PJ plays around with it and gets it stuck in his t-shirt! I haven't been able to suspend my disbelief about it since...)

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



Magpie
Immortal


Jan 11 2011, 2:21pm

Post #64 of 72 (212 views)
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I think a link has been posted to that thread at some point [In reply to] Can't Post

I have a vague memory of another discussion where I or someone else dug up that old thread. And funnily, I seem to remember reading about the translations before the new boards. So I wonder if that was the first time that got posted.


LOTR soundtrack website
magpie avatar gallery ~ Torn Image Posting Guide


Alassëa Eruvande
Valinor


Jan 11 2011, 5:03pm

Post #65 of 72 (230 views)
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"And when the Balrog appeared, he asked if Gandalf sees something we aren’t shown?" [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes. It's the wings. Evil

*runs away*



And suddenly the Tornadoes saw afar off a greenlight, as it were a cloud with a living heart of flame;
and they knew that this was no vision only, but that PJ had made a new thing: The Hobbit, the Film that Is.


sador
Half-elven


Jan 11 2011, 8:38pm

Post #66 of 72 (218 views)
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snert. [In reply to] Can't Post

Actually, the debate about the Balrog's wings might have been the subject of another rant about translations.

But why are you running? Have you met a foe beyond your power? Shocked

"Let me think!" - Aragorn.

The weekly discussion of The Lord of the Rings is back! Please join us in the Reading Room for Book III.

"Do you mourn the loss of Boromir?"
- Finding Frodo.



sador
Half-elven


Jan 11 2011, 8:57pm

Post #67 of 72 (240 views)
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Well yes, [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
After reading of the tra-la-lally Elves in Rivendell in The Hobbit, your son must have been disappointed in the "somber and gloomy" Elves in the LotR movies!


He had specifically mentioned Elrond as different from the way he pictured him, and asked whether it was because of the troubled times.


In Reply To
I wonder why there was such a problem with the name "Moria", since the pronunciation differs from that for "Moriah", and one would think that some simple spelling change or placement of something like an accent mark could have emphasized that.


Not really. The "h" at the end of "Moria" comes specifically from the voiceless letter 'he' in Hebrew, which is only heard in the middle of the letter. As you can see by passing your mouse on the entrie in other languages here, in several European languages there is no 'h'.
The only difference between how Gimli pronounced the name Moria and the way it is pronounced in Hebrew in in the placing of the accent - which will make it the common pronounciation among new immigrants.
And accent marks are very rarely used in Hebrew, so a reader would refer to them as a bother rather than a help.


In Reply To
Ah, the "Background Talk"! It sounds like you gave him a nice concise version, just enough so it wouldn't boggle his mind, yet it still provided what he needed for the answer to a valid question: if they're Dwarf doors, then why is the writing in Elvish.


Well, he still asked me a few days later where did Gondolin come into the story, and followed it up by asking why if "History became legend; legend became myth", is the Fall of Gondolin mentioned as well-known history in A Short rest?
I didn't give him the correct answer (Tolkien not 'realizing' that six thousand years have passed when he wrote The Hobbit), but rather told him that the movie should not be expected to fit The Hobbit in all points; and also that Gondolin was introduced by Elrond, who was also a witness to The Last Alliance - history became myth among Men, but not to him.
Of course, the real problem is with the goblins recognising Beater and Biter - but as he hadn't thought of it yet, I leave that can of worms unopened.

"Let me think!" - Aragorn.

The weekly discussion of The Lord of the Rings is back! Please join us in the Reading Room for Book III.

"Do you mourn the loss of Boromir?"
- Finding Frodo.



Luthien Rising
Lorien


Jan 12 2011, 12:09am

Post #68 of 72 (234 views)
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This mom ... [In reply to] Can't Post

... is really happy to read these posts! My kids are way past first viewing, though my youngest, age 10, hasn't read the books (and, now that I think of it, has never sat through a *whole* movie yet -- but he just doesn't get through fiction on screen well at all), and it's exciting to see the movies through fresh eyes, vicariously.

Lúthien Rising
All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us. / We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.


Alassëa Eruvande
Valinor


Jan 12 2011, 2:11pm

Post #69 of 72 (219 views)
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Not a foe, [In reply to] Can't Post

but many on TORn are beyond my power...

Tongue



And suddenly the Tornadoes saw afar off a greenlight, as it were a cloud with a living heart of flame;
and they knew that this was no vision only, but that PJ had made a new thing: The Hobbit, the Film that Is.


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jan 13 2011, 2:58pm

Post #70 of 72 (203 views)
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Sure, go with it! [In reply to] Can't Post

Elboron, that is, and very appropriate since it's also another character's son's name! Wait, that didn't come out quite right, I didn't mean to imply that you were quite a character...maybe... Angelic

He's quite picked up on the "childlike carelessness" of Pippin! And he's doing well at tying in the previous "hints" with what is happening: he knows Frodo cannot be dead, he's linked the Balrog to the picture in Saruman's book.

What did he think of how Caras Galadhon was represented - did he understand what it was supposed to be?


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915




sador
Half-elven


Jan 13 2011, 3:39pm

Post #71 of 72 (192 views)
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No, I don't think he did. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
What did he think of how Caras Galadhon was represented - did he understand what it was supposed to be?



"Let me think!" - Aragorn.

The weekly discussion of The Lord of the Rings is back! Please join us in the Reading Room for Book III.

"Do you mourn the loss of Boromir?"
- Finding Frodo.



sador
Half-elven


Jan 13 2011, 3:40pm

Post #72 of 72 (261 views)
Shortcut
That's great! [In reply to] Can't Post

And it's really again to see, err, read you on these boards again.

"Let me think!" - Aragorn.

The weekly discussion of The Lord of the Rings is back! Please join us in the Reading Room for Book III.

"Do you mourn the loss of Boromir?"
- Finding Frodo.


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