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QTNA for today...nine lords a leaping...

weaver
Half-elven

Jul 18 2012, 2:39am

Post #1 of 23 (801 views)
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QTNA for today...nine lords a leaping... Can't Post

I've finally gotten a chance to stop back in and thought I'd offer another installment of "QTNA -- Questions That Need Answering". This is a reprisal of a series hosted by hobbitlove when we first wandered into these "new boards" -- she had a great gift of coming up with all kinds of fun questions to ponder for discussion, and it's in that spirit that I bring you this post.

Here are today's QTNA, inspired by the recent SCOD discussion of one of the shots from the crumbling stairs sequence in FOTR:
  1. Is this scene inspired by anything in the book, or is it a total invention of Jackson's?
  2. It's a pretty long scene, which comes right before the Balrog encounter which is huge enough in itself -- any thoughts on why the scriptwriters felt the need to add this scene on the way to the Balrog?
  3. Each character has to take a leap of faith in this scene -- any comments on the order they leap in, how they get to the other side, and who catches who?
  4. Why in the world did the Fellowship leave Frodo and Aragorn to the end like that? Wouldn't you think they'd want to make sure Frodo got to safety first? And isn't the future King of Gondor someone you'd also want to put closer to the head of the line?
  5. Just how the heck did the dwarves build that bridge anyway?
  6. Would you call the moment when the bridge falls into the chasm at the end an "iconic" image from the films?
That's all I can come up with ! Feel free to answer one or all or add your own questions or insights on this scene...

Thanks in advance for any and all replies...and if you have an idea for a future QTNA installment, please PM me!

Weaver




Kristin Thompson
Rohan


Jul 18 2012, 4:21am

Post #2 of 23 (442 views)
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Good questions, weaver! [In reply to] Can't Post

I've always found this scene a bit over-the-top, but it's worth considering why the filmmakers might have put it there. I can't answer all the questions, but here's a try on the first two:

1. I think the closest thing in the book to the collapsing-bridge scene is on p. 311 of the 50th Anniversary edition of LOTR, "There were fissures and chasms in the walls and floor, and every now and then a crack would open right before their feet. The widest was more than seven feet across, and it was long before Pippin could summon enough courage to leap over the dreadful gap. The noise of churning water came up from far below, as if some great mill-wheel was turning in the depths."

That's a lot simpler than the scene in the book, but I wouldn't be surprised if the writers were inspired by it for the bridge scene.

2. Why? Apart from just whipping up yet more excitement, that is? I talk about that in my essay "Gollum Talks to Himself" in Picturing Tolkien (Janice M. Bostad and Philip E. Kaveny, eds.). That essay is an attempt to show that, though every book-firster will have some complaints about choices made in the adaptation, there are some brilliant, clever, or just pretty good solutions concocted for the many challenges of bringing LOTR to the screen. I'll quote the whole paragraph:

Even scenes that seem to be gratuitous changes intended merely to create suspense and excitement may have functions not wholly unfaithful to the book. Take the abyss below the Bridge of Khazad-dum. In the book, Tolkien describes it briefly and in simple terms: "Suddenly Frodo saw before him a black chasm. At the end of the hall the floor vanished and fell to an unknown depth" (p. 329). The film must establish the space more fully, and it does so in part by inserting a scene immediately before the battle. The giant section of an elevated stone stairway that collapses as the Fellowship tries to descend it resembles nothing in the book. Yet it serves to give the viewer a visceral sense of the great depths below this section of the mines in preparation for the battle with the Balrog. Up to this point in the sequence we have primarily seen the group fleeing across vast horizontal surfaces or through narrow tunnels. Just after we get our first distant view of the bridge, the stairway appears and acts as a transition away from the horizontal to the vertical, establishing this area of Moria as riddled with hugely deep chasms and preparing for the moment when Gandalf and the Balrog plunge into the main one.

Whether the writers had that transition in mind, I don't know. But it's one explanation. I think the stairway collapse is overdone, and the notion that Aragorn and Frodo leaning one way or another would have any effect at all on the balance of the huge section of stairway is downright ludicrous to me.

As to the order of the characters, the ones the writers wanted to single out for little bits of business ("Nobody tosses a dwarf!") tend to go later, which ignores the logic that one would think would govern the scene.

How did they build it? No idea.

I find it interesting that this scene and the troll fight were the ones chosen for the 26-minute preview reel shown at Cannes in 2001. (That scene ends with the extreme long shot of the Balrog emerging from the tunnel to fight Gandalf.) Obviously the filmmakers thought they would impress the reporters and foreign distributors present--and they certainly did.


sador
Half-elven


Jul 18 2012, 7:10am

Post #3 of 23 (395 views)
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Hello! [In reply to] Can't Post

Very little time, but couldn't resist...

Is this scene inspired by anything in the book, or is it a total invention of Jackson's?
I don't want to bash Jackson overmuch. Let's attribute it to Philippa or Fran.

It's a pretty long scene, which comes right before the Balrog encounter which is huge enough in itself -- any thoughts on why the scriptwriters felt the need to add this scene on the way to the Balrog?
Kirstin made a valiant effort.

Perhaps as a book-firster, I tend to be more critical of this scene - and not to need the kind of spatial information she added.
But as FotR has a more-or-less linear plot which is pretty exciting (at least these chapters are), I am less forgiving of this kind of inventions in it.

Each character has to take a leap of faith in this scene -- any comments on the order they leap in, how they get to the other side, and who catches who?
I for one did like the dwarf-tossing joke (once I've understood it).

But why need Legolas go first? If anything, as the archer he should cover the rear.


Quote

Only trust an Elf or Dwarf
As far as you can throw them.



Why in the world did the Fellowship leave Frodo and Aragorn to the end like that?
To enhance the drama.

Wouldn't you think they'd want to make sure Frodo got to safety first?
That's good sense.
He's wounded; in such cases, sometimes an officer needs to be hard and cruel - and ensure the survival of those less likely to become a burden, while preparing to leave behind in case of dire need anyone deemed less necessary for the Quest's success.

Hmm... did anyone think to secure the Ring before, in case Frodo would need to be abandoned?

And isn't the future King of Gondor someone you'd also want to put closer to the head of the line?
It's clear that the rear must be brought be a Man or Elf. Leggie and Boromir just got there first.

And if the future King of Gondor doesn't even bother to put a helmet at the Black Gate - why sacrifice anyone with more sense?

Just how the heck did the dwarves build that bridge anyway?
CGI.


Seriously, which other method would work?

Would you call the moment when the bridge falls into the chasm at the end an "iconic" image from the films?
I call it one of the moments I really don't like.
Sorry. Usually I have a more positive attitude.

It's great to see you, weaver - plese come more often!


"Do you find it strange that the food is strewn about but the clothes of victims are hanging on the walls nice and neat?"
- Finding Frodo.



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Xanaseb
Tol Eressea


Jul 18 2012, 1:41pm

Post #4 of 23 (461 views)
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Brilliant questions weaver.... ones I'd take -ages- to answer, thereore I'll answer one or two , some more later maybe.. [In reply to] Can't Post

.. They're certainly thought provoking!!

2. Why have this scene just before meeting the Balrog?:
To up the anti, build up tension, and in a funny way, it has a few parallels with the scene at Durin's Bridge, the one which Gandalf and the Balrog break and fall down. I find it quite fascinating that after surviving that earlier jump gap thing, Gandalf falls to the abyss in that end-of-Moria scene. In the crazy stairs jump, Gandalf is the second (after the acrobatic Legolas) to jump.... ... interesting comparison?
It is also interesting that in an earlier bit, just when they enter at fast speed into the vast stair-chasm, Boromir is almost the first to fall off,...... and yet, rather symbolically IMO, he is saved in the nick of time... he had a part to play yet.

5. How the heck did they build it?: Dwarves. Nuff said. They were the architectural giants of Middle-Earth

6. Is it not Iconic?: It is iconic only in that it was a very cool and memorable special effects sequence IMO. Powerful indeed.

Cheers weaver, these questions are ace!



PS. I assume you refer to the 'Stairs' collapsing rather than the 'bridge' collapsing being Iconic, and the Dwarves building the 'stairs'. I think that's a small mistake there? or do you actually mean Durin's Bridge Tongue

Join us over at Barliman's chat all day, any day!
________________________________________________

I thirst for Khuzdl! Baruk Khazd! Khazd ai-mnu!

-I am a victim of Bifurcation- (credit to LP)


(This post was edited by Xanaseb on Jul 18 2012, 1:47pm)


Xanaseb
Tol Eressea


Jul 18 2012, 1:42pm

Post #5 of 23 (380 views)
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that's a great reference to the book Kristin, you're right, that must have been part of an inspiration for sure // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Join us over at Barliman's chat all day, any day!
________________________________________________

I thirst for Khuzdl! Baruk Khazd! Khazd ai-mnu!

-I am a victim of Bifurcation- (credit to LP)


(This post was edited by Xanaseb on Jul 18 2012, 1:42pm)


FarFromHome
Valinor


Jul 18 2012, 1:45pm

Post #6 of 23 (392 views)
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Nice to see you, weaver! [In reply to] Can't Post

I get the impression that most people here don't particularly like this scene, and I'm another non-fan. It seems like typical movie business, rather than having much to do with Tolkien. In fact, that last bit with Frodo and Aragorn teetering as the stairway collapses always reminds me of the bit in Titanic where Jack makes Rose wait until just the right moment to jump into the water as the boat tips. I don't think the leaning back is meant to be affecting the fall of the stairs - just preventing the two of them from falling too early before the momentum of the falling stairs can tip them forward to safety. It's basic disaster-movie stuff, I seems to me. I can see why Jackson might have been keen to show it at Cannes, because he probably wanted to impress general movie-fans, and this is a scene that anyone with a bit of movie knowledge (that's not me...Tongue) would probably relate to very easily. In this disaster-movie context, the "dwarf-tossing" joke works fine too - it's not Tolkien, but it's classic movie-business, and keeps the general audience happy. I've always kind of liked it as a nice crossover line - a wink to the audience in the modern world, where things don't mean quite the same thing that they do in Middle-earth! (Tolkien indulges in some of this himself in The Hobbit, although he keeps his modern narrator well hidden in LotR.)

Anyway, to answer your questions:

Is this scene inspired by anything in the book, or is it a total invention of Jackson's?

I seem to recall from the extras that it was inspired by a bit of doodling by one of the artists (can't remember which), who added some cracks and crumbling stonework to a sketch of some stairs he had drawn for Moria. I imagine he (Alan Lee or John Howe) was inspired by the details that Kristin quotes from the book about the "fissures and chasms". But PJ took that little visual hint and apparently dreamed up the rest.

It's a pretty long scene, which comes right before the Balrog encounter which is huge enough in itself -- any thoughts on why the scriptwriters felt the need to add this scene on the way to the Balrog?

Maybe it's to do with building tension, but I've never really understood how that works - how important is it to keep upping the sense of danger, rather than letting the crucial moment "just happen" when it's supposed to? I quite like the idea Kristin mentions about giving a sense of the tremendous, scary depths before we reach the bridge of Khazad-Dum. But there's another moment that does this, not long before - when the hobbits stop on the very edge of a sickening drop, and Legolas pulls Boromir back from the brink.

Each character has to take a leap of faith in this scene -- any comments on the order they leap in, how they get to the other side, and who catches who?

This is odd because only moments before, Gandalf has told Aragorn to go first while he (Gandalf) brings up the rear. That's a line direct from the book, and sets up the order for crossing the fateful Bridge of Khazad-Dum. But now suddenly there's another hazard in the way, and Gandalf decides to go ahead and leave both Aragorn and Frodo on the other side! As for who catches who, Boromir's decision to take Merry and Pippin reinforces his care for them that we've already seen and will see again. And the fact that he seems to destabilise the bridge for the others is maybe a bit of foreshadowing too...

Why in the world did the Fellowship leave Frodo and Aragorn to the end like that? Wouldn't you think they'd want to make sure Frodo got to safety first? And isn't the future King of Gondor someone you'd also want to put closer to the head of the line?

Well, it looks to me as if Aragorn intended to throw the hobbits and dwarf over, tossing Sam first to get the distance and then probably following with Frodo. (It looks as if Gimli butts in to prevent himself being tossed, before Aragorn had even got around to him - dwarvish pride holding up the rescue of Frodo.) And Boromir had already taken matters into his own hands by jumping with Merry and Pippin. Such a big weight seems to destabilise the bridge, in the end leaving Aragorn and Frodo isolated. As I say, a bit of foreshadowing for Boromir's future actions.

Would you call the moment when the bridge falls into the chasm at the end an "iconic" image from the films?

It never looks quite right to me - I just can't make myself believe that the falling bridge is real. Somehow the CGI doesn't quite work - some law of physics is being broken, I'm sure of it!

The "iconic" image that is still often reproduced is the one of Gandalf facing the Balrog on the Bridge that really matters! This one is just a side-show in the end.



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



Xanaseb
Tol Eressea


Jul 18 2012, 1:49pm

Post #7 of 23 (434 views)
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WOW, this pondering and discussion on the scene has --definitely-- made me appreciate it much more. [In reply to] Can't Post

It is in fact a much deeper (literally ;) ) sequence than I had originally thought, though I never had a lot against it.... just thought that it wasn't 100% amazing ;)... just 99% (lol :P )

Join us over at Barliman's chat all day, any day!
________________________________________________

I thirst for Khuzdl! Baruk Khazd! Khazd ai-mnu!

-I am a victim of Bifurcation- (credit to LP)


Xanaseb
Tol Eressea


Jul 18 2012, 1:50pm

Post #8 of 23 (422 views)
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Great spot with Boromir catching Merry and Pippin. So much greater meaning // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Join us over at Barliman's chat all day, any day!
________________________________________________

I thirst for Khuzdl! Baruk Khazd! Khazd ai-mnu!

-I am a victim of Bifurcation- (credit to LP)


Bombadil
Half-elven


Jul 18 2012, 2:36pm

Post #9 of 23 (458 views)
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Book Firsters know Gandalf soon.. [In reply to] Can't Post

 will fall...
so Showing each of the Fellowship
come so close to disappearing into the dephts forever
lost
makes Gandalf's Fall that

much much more signifigent.
Each one had suvived until the Most important character
they lost.
Afriend put down the book for months when he read that..he didn't want read anymore without Gandalf in it.
Bom


(This post was edited by Bombadil on Jul 18 2012, 2:42pm)


Kristin Thompson
Rohan


Jul 18 2012, 5:06pm

Post #10 of 23 (397 views)
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Yes, but ... [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes, there's the moment when they all look down into the depths of the mine and see the torches reflected by the mithril still in the rock. But as I recall, that's only in the extended edition, and it also happens not long after they've gotten trapped and started their trek across Moria. Most of the spaces they go through (apart from the steep stairs where Gandalf tells Merry to always follow his nose) are subsequently fairly flat until they get to the crumbling stairway. Especially that extreme long shot just after Gandalf shouts "Run!" where they all are racing across a flat floor in the columned hall. I think the notion that there are deep chasms on the east side of Moria as well was being set up.


Kristin Thompson
Rohan


Jul 18 2012, 5:11pm

Post #11 of 23 (405 views)
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I can empathize with your friend, Bombadil [In reply to] Can't Post

Gandalf is far and away my favorite character. I am old enough to have read the books right after they were published in the Ballantine paperbacks in 1965. I was in high school, and a thoughtless classmate informed me when I had barely started LOTR that Gandalf would come back. So I shall never know how I would have reacted to Moria without that info. I doubt I would have set the book aside, but I would have been very, very upset.


Bombadil
Half-elven


Jul 18 2012, 7:01pm

Post #12 of 23 (407 views)
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Like you l I've hada aa... 45 year relationship [In reply to] Can't Post

WITH JRRT

if i can jus' keep breathing
until Christmas 2003

My Goldberry
will finally rest
in peace.


FarFromHome
Valinor


Jul 19 2012, 3:08pm

Post #13 of 23 (351 views)
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The bit I was thinking of... [In reply to] Can't Post

... was this bit, when first Boromir almost falls into the abyss, and then the hobbits teeter on the brink as well. There's no screencap of it, but I'm pretty sure that the camera looks over the edge into the depths here too.

Actually, it's almost the last thing that happens before the crumbling staircase. In fact I really like that explanation for the staircase scene that you quoted, about developing the sense of the great chasms here. I just wanted to mention that the filmmakers had already done something to show this. I even wonder whether perhaps the staircase scene could have been added because the filmmakers thought that first moment wasn't powerful enough. But to me the staircase scene does somehow feel added, rather than fully integrated into the flow of action, maybe because it feels more like a classic movie scene than a scene from Tolkien.

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



(This post was edited by FarFromHome on Jul 19 2012, 3:10pm)


Arandiel
Grey Havens

Jul 19 2012, 3:14pm

Post #14 of 23 (359 views)
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Nothing sustantive to add, just wanted to say I LOVE this thread!// [In reply to] Can't Post

 


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Kristin Thompson
Rohan


Jul 19 2012, 3:16pm

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Oh, that one [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't remember the exact point where that comes and don't have time to check, but I guess I would put that as part of the lead-in to the collapsing stairway scene. Setting up the idea of giant abysses to prepare for the big ones.

Thanks for your kind words about my explanation. I must say, so many Tolkien scholars have written quasi-academic articles attacking the films that I have tried always to give the filmmakers the benefit of the doubt and try to find some solid function for everything they added. In some cases I can see a function, but the solution just seems to be pushed too far. Legolas killing the Mumak and sliding down its trunk, for example. That, as far as I'm concerned, was just there to feed the obsession with Orlando Bloom and to add a cheap laugh to the body-count contest with Gimli. The idea of the Fellowship having to leap over a collapsed section of a stairway at this point in the Moria episode makes perfect sense. The whole teeter-totter balancing act with Frodo and Aragorn leaning back and forth spoiled it for me.


Magpie
Immortal


Jul 19 2012, 3:40pm

Post #16 of 23 (377 views)
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I appreciate the approach you are taking [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
I must say, so many Tolkien scholars have written quasi-academic articles attacking the films that I have tried always to give the filmmakers the benefit of the doubt and try to find some solid function for everything they added.


It seems well reasoned and fair. It's an approach I respect as well as appreciate and I always feel like reading your comments have given me something worthy to consider and think about.


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FarFromHome
Valinor


Jul 19 2012, 4:45pm

Post #17 of 23 (326 views)
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You're right [In reply to] Can't Post

It could be just part of the lead-in, since it's immediately before the crumbling stair (I checked the sequencing when I was getting the screencaps). Maybe it always was meant to be part of the same scene, although to me the first part feels a lot more like the book ("Look ahead! called Gandalf. The Bridge is near. lt is dangerous and narrow. Suddenly Frodo saw before him a black chasm...") and the second one feels more like a classic movie scene.

I like your approach of trying to find explanations for the elements that tend to be criticised, and in fact I suspect that pretty much all of them have something to recommend them. Even the "cheap laugh" of the mumak-count isn't completely gratuitous, as it refers back to Gimli and Legolas' counting game that is a bit of fairly heavy-handed comedy in the book too! I must say that Gimli's "That still only counts as one!" strikes me as a great movie-line, in the grand old tradtion of competing comrades, whether Butch and Sundance or Legolas and Gimli.

In fact, I'm not sure that the filmmakers should be condemned for putting movie-business, even Legolas' stunts, into the films. Just as Tolkien's book borrows plenty of elements from traditional storytelling, so Jackson's films borrow elements from the classic movie tradition. That seems fair enough to me! I think Jackson's success was not so much in putting Tolkien faithfully onto the screen as in creating a version of Tolkien that works as film.

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



Kristin Thompson
Rohan


Jul 19 2012, 4:46pm

Post #18 of 23 (312 views)
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Thanks, Magpie! [In reply to] Can't Post

As I have said and written more than once, these academics who attack the film in print don't seem to think about who might actually want to read such a piece. People who love the film are hardly likely to respond favorably when a professor says, "You're wrong to love that, it's bad, stop loving it." And people who hate the films or are indifferent are not going to read an essay about them. I suppose they're talking to each other, which isn't a big group.

I have to say that there are some long-time Tolkien scholars, including some prominent ones, who do like the film very much. I think of Tom Shippey, John Ratliffe, and Richard West in particular, as well as Janice Bogstad and Philip Kaveny, co-editors of the Picturing Tolkien anthology. They see the flaws, as do we all, but they don't let that get in the way of their appreciating Peter's team's work.

And whatever else one may think, it is simply a fact that huge numbers of film-firsters have been turned onto the book and loved it, too. Far more people read Tolkien now than did before.


Kristin Thompson
Rohan


Jul 19 2012, 4:54pm

Post #19 of 23 (383 views)
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Thanks, FarFromHome! [In reply to] Can't Post

I completely agree about Peter's version being a version of Tolkien (in somewhat the way John Howe's or Ted Nasmith's or Alan Lee's images are, and those differ widely). Tolkien drew upon Victorian adventure-tale conventions, Peter drew upon martial arts and horror.

I still find the mumak-killing scene hard to take, partly because Gimli's line makes no sense to me (funny though it is). A whole bunch of guys riding the mumak got killed, too. Don't they count? Inevitably when I watch that scene, that's what I think.


Silverlode
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jul 19 2012, 7:39pm

Post #20 of 23 (323 views)
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That line [In reply to] Can't Post

always strikes me as being about stubborn Dwarvish character rather than any kind of practical assessment. Legolas' stunts have been getting bigger and better continually, climaxing in this over-the-top superhuman bit. You can see Gimli's eyes go wide in amazement as he watches, but he's determined not to give in and admit he's been bested. Would a dwarf ever admit that he was impressed by an Elf in a game of one-upmanship? I think not...and besides, it was only one arrow (well, ok, multiple arrows but one shot). One shot = one kill. Still only counts as one! As dwarf humor goes, I far prefer this to dwarf-tossing jokes, pratfalls or poor table manners.

Silverlode

"Of all faces those of our familiares are the ones both most difficult to play fantastic tricks with, and most difficult really to see with fresh attention. They have become like the things which once attracted us by their glitter, or their colour, or their shape, and we laid hands on them, and then locked them in our hoard, acquired them, and acquiring ceased to look at them.
Creative fantasy, because it is mainly trying to do something else [make something new], may open your hoard and let all the locked things fly away like cage-birds. The gems all turn into flowers or flames, and you will be warned that all you had (or knew) was dangerous and potent, not really effectively chained, free and wild; no more yours than they were you."
-On Fairy Stories


weaver
Half-elven

Jul 20 2012, 3:41am

Post #21 of 23 (339 views)
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yep, meant the stairs... [In reply to] Can't Post

thanks for catching me on that one!

I am better at the big pictures than the details -- I always appreciate those, like you, who can see the things I miss!

Weaver




weaver
Half-elven

Jul 20 2012, 3:47am

Post #22 of 23 (337 views)
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I reacted a lot like your friend... [In reply to] Can't Post

I was really shocked when Gandalf fell in that pit -- it took me quite a while to get back into the story after that, and I was ecstatic when he came back. It's been a lot of years since that first read, but the fact that I can still dig up the memory of those two moments says a lot about the power of the story, I think, and the value of "not" knowing how it turns out. My husband was pretty mad at one of my sons for telling him Gandalf came back in the second film...I do think he felt robbed a bit!

I was introduced to Tolkien by a wonderful friend who was wise enough not to ruin the surprise of the return for me, even though she could tell I was traumatized over the loss...me, I would have caved and spilled my guts, but she was a rock!

Weaver




weaver
Half-elven

Jul 20 2012, 3:54am

Post #23 of 23 (423 views)
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I had not thought before about the "deep" side of things... [In reply to] Can't Post

Through most of Moria, we see them climb up, or run across flat ground, really...and that bit with Boromir and the falling torch is pretty quick. So I do think it helped the non-book audience to be hammered over the head with that image of the crumbling stair as a build up to Gandalf's fall into the depths...thanks for that insight!

I had mostly thought about the scene in terms of the characters -- crossing that depth is the "trust-fall" moment of the films, to me; the moment where they all have to rely on each other to survive, which in turn transforms their loose association into something deeper as well. But like they always say in the commentaries, their focus usually was on having each scene achieve multiple goals in terms of storytelling...

I'm with you that the teetering rock part with Aragorn and Frodo crosses the line -- a bit like Denethor's flaming run -- but in both cases, the epic shot that follows makes me forgive them. I do confess to liking both of those "falling" images quite a bit!

Weaver



 
 

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