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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Lord of the Rings:
SCOD - "The grief is still too near"

Magpie
Immortal


Jul 23 2012, 12:37am

Post #1 of 20 (675 views)
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SCOD - "The grief is still too near" Can't Post

Today's screencap of the day is this one:



The full size version is at the end of the link and I actually suggest you open that image up in another tab or window because I think it 'reads' better at a larger size and against a black background.

http://www.framecaplib.com/...es/fotr/fotr1317.htm

I mostly go with intuition when I chose images and, after looking at all of them and considering what there was to remark about... I went with this.

To put the image in context, the line quoted at the LOTR Screencap Library is, "I have not the heart to tell you. For me, the grief is still too near." Gandalf fell, and the Fellowship had little time to grieve. They have been running and traveling and now they are safe. It is when one is safe that one starts to process shock or grief at a different level.

What do you think about the expression on Legolas' face here? Does it effectively convey what you imagine a member of the Fellowship would be feeling right now? Is there anything particularly Elvish about this expression?

There's not much else to see in this image. It's dark and closely focused. But you can get a glimpse of the Mallorn tree in this image and other shots in this scene show the Fellowship are nestled at the base of a tree trunk, among the above-ground root structure.

What did you think of the trees? What about the decision to place the Fellowship at the base of a tree rather than in a flet?

I honestly can't remember exactly where the book placed them. I bet one of you will. ;-)

And this may seem trivial to the extreme but I wouldn't have three questions if I didn't ask it and I actually think *noticing* stuff like this has some value.

Do you take in things like those blurry points of light in a practical way, thinking 'Those must be lights' or in an aesthetic, compositional way - seeing it like that last dab of paint an artist puts to the canvas before she thinks, 'done'?

Not to be confined to three questions... any other thoughts or comments are welcome. Or.. ones that bash Orlando's portrayal of Legolas or his pretty bishonen hair will be accepted, if not welcome. I happen to think he did a pretty good job for a 22 year old fresh out of drama school. I had sons not much younger than him and I liked to think they would be given some room to grow when they started their careers. :-)


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Escapist
Gondor

Jul 23 2012, 6:41am

Post #2 of 20 (243 views)
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"The grief is still too near" [In reply to] Can't Post

What do you think about the expression on Legolas' face here? Does it effectively convey what you imagine a member of the Fellowship would be feeling right now? Is there anything particularly Elvish about this expression?

The expression seems ambiguous besides a quality of reflectiveness in his eyes that makes me think of memory.
The lighting around his hair seems "elvish" to me - although this is possibly just a reflection of a nearby lamp - it suggests the kind of lighting effects that are mentioned in other places about elves.


And this may seem trivial to the extreme but I wouldn't have three questions if I didn't ask it and I actually think *noticing* stuff like this has some value.

I think so. Subtle visual cues contain a lot of information. It's kind of fun to see what different people pick up on or connect an image to.


Do you take in things like those blurry points of light in a practical way, thinking 'Those must be lights' or in an aesthetic, compositional way - seeing it like that last dab of paint an artist puts to the canvas before she thinks, 'done'?

Knowing that this is a picture captured from a film makes me feel like I want to know how the lights are moving before I decide. But if I didn't know any better, I would lean towards a fairy that attached itself to Legolas like Navi attached herself to Link Blush. I can just hear her now saying "Hey!"


SirDennisC
Half-elven


Jul 23 2012, 7:00am

Post #3 of 20 (200 views)
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Welcome to TORn Escapist! [In reply to] Can't Post

Great first post... may you make many more.

Smile


Escapist
Gondor

Jul 23 2012, 7:10am

Post #4 of 20 (190 views)
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Thank You SirDennisC [In reply to] Can't Post

I just realized that "Hey!" might mean several different things ... I might expand on that with

"Hey listen!" Tongue

Not to say I am not a Legolas fangirl a little bit Angelic

<disclaimer: I realize that Link is not Legolas - this whole thing came about as an assumption of me "not knowing any better" that this was a movie clip among other things>
Shocked


SirDennisC
Half-elven


Jul 23 2012, 7:27am

Post #5 of 20 (226 views)
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Three questions? [In reply to] Can't Post

I always love the way you approach the SCOD Magpie.

What do you think about the expression on Legolas' face here?

Lost in thought.

Does it effectively convey what you imagine a member of the Fellowship would be feeling right now?

Yes, and being in Lothlorian, it seems to fall on the elven member of the Fellowship to express what they are feeling just now.

Is there anything particularly Elvish about this expression?

He seems like a deep thinker, lost in thought, so yes.

What did you think of the trees?

They're huge and ancient.

What about the decision to place the Fellowship at the base of a tree rather than in a flet?

It was in the EE that I first noticed this change... I can roll with it.

Do you take in things like those blurry points of light in a practical way, thinking 'Those must be lights'

At first, yes.

or in an aesthetic, compositional way - seeing it like that last dab of paint an artist puts to the canvas before she thinks, 'done'?

Sometimes, especially when I have the luxury of seeing a still image. In fact the composition of shots really comes through in the screen caps, not so much (for me) during the movie... though it depends on what else is going on, if it is something that distracts from the graphic elements of the shot in question. Sometimes composition is just eye candy but other times it is integral to understanding a scene. (FWIW, in this shot it is just eye candy. Though strictly speaking, having a character left of centre with his gaze also to the left is slightly unconventional. But it is balanced by the angle of his face and shoulders, both facing slightly to the right or centre of the image.)

Bonus: I agree that Bloom did a good job... he captured quite well the Legolas of my mind. I like his Legolas only slightly better than the first taste of Will Turner (POC:DMC), than his Paris (Troy), and his turn as Balian (KoH).


SirDennisC
Half-elven


Jul 23 2012, 7:34am

Post #6 of 20 (206 views)
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The comparison with Link is inescapable. [In reply to] Can't Post

(see what I did there?Laugh)

... and please, you may call me Sir D Wink


Escapist
Gondor

Jul 23 2012, 2:18pm

Post #7 of 20 (210 views)
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I *noticed* [In reply to] Can't Post

Sir D it is then Smile

I also notice that I failed to notice the bonus questions! Blush

Not to be confined to three questions... any other thoughts or comments are welcome. Or.. ones that bash Orlando's portrayal of Legolas or his pretty bishonen hair will be accepted, if not welcome. I happen to think he did a pretty good job for a 22 year old fresh out of drama school. I had sons not much younger than him and I liked to think they would be given some room to grow when they started their careers. :-)

I think Orlando did the part justice - considering the limits of screentime and adaptation to film (and not actually being an elf). He certainly gained a following and made a memorable character out of it! I don't think there is any reason to bash hair just because it is pretty Tongue. If I miss the sides of the character and longer quotes from the elf that didn't translate to the film, then there is always the book and things.

I hadn't caught those details about the trees! Good call Wink


One Ringer
Tol Eressea


Jul 23 2012, 6:08pm

Post #8 of 20 (174 views)
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Passive, [In reply to] Can't Post

I think Bloom pulls off exactly what's needed for Legolas especially in this scene. He comes across very passive and distant, and in many ways he is. In recent times I've felt that the best way to interpret an immortal is as distant as can be (but not too much, of course). For characters (not just in LotR) who live beyond ages, coming and going, watching people they know die over the years, they become so unlinked with the heart of mortality that they have little way to convey the grief they have felt time and time again.

For me, Legolas reflects on Gandalf's death like the passing of a tree, the snuffing of an ancient life (which it is). It's just about the only sort of death he can really feel to the bone at this point. Just look at his reaction to Boromir's death. From what we see, it isn't too heavy, nor does it linger. Not to say that he feels nothing toward's Boromir being killed, just that it's the same sort of thing he's witnessed countless times before.

FOTR 10th Anniversary Music Video - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=33xJU3AIwsg

"You do not let your eyes see nor your ears hear, and that which is outside your daily life is not of account to you. Ah, it is the fault of our science that it wants to explain all; and if it explain not, then it says there is nothing to explain."


Shelob'sAppetite
Valinor

Jul 24 2012, 6:04am

Post #9 of 20 (201 views)
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They sleep on the ground in the book [In reply to] Can't Post

After meeting with Galadriel and Celeborn high in the treetops, the Fellowship sleeps on the ground in Caras Galadhon, on the lawn under a pavilion, with some "soft couches." Peter didn't change anything on this one.


SirDennisC
Half-elven


Jul 24 2012, 8:31pm

Post #10 of 20 (154 views)
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Gah! I hate when that happens [In reply to] Can't Post

You think you remember something one way but it turns out that it was just your imagination. I do however remember thinking that it was odd that they were sleeping on the ground in the EEs.

Now I'm wondering if Magpie did not set a snare for us Laugh






(Just kidding Magpie, I know you would never do that!)


Magpie
Immortal


Jul 24 2012, 10:06pm

Post #11 of 20 (145 views)
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no snare [In reply to] Can't Post

I didn't remember and the old, obsessive perfectionist me would look it up. The new, trying hard to be more relaxed (not sure if that exactly works) me figured: someone is sure to remember. I'll let them chime in.

:-)

There are a lot of details I don't remember, but I form my own impressions and sense of things. I first thought, they were surely in a flet. Then I realized I didn't know that to be true. I did remember the earlier scene where Gollum and yrch show up as being on a flet, but I didn't *know* with certainty about later in Caras Galadhon.


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HappyHobbitess
Rohan


Jul 26 2012, 1:57pm

Post #12 of 20 (109 views)
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this brings me back... [In reply to] Can't Post

...to my Legolas fangirl days. I loved this shot and this moment. I seem to remember I got some fancy shmanzy photo paper so I could print it out and put it on my wall.

I remember being taken by the quiet and contemplative nature of his grief, and of the grief expressed by the music of the Elves. Grief isn't always sobbing or wailing, and I felt his response seemed very right. It also now seems more Elvish to me than it did at the time, though I'm struggling to articulate why. I'll have to think about that one.

"Yes, but what about SECOND breakfast?"


Magpie
Immortal


Jul 26 2012, 4:18pm

Post #13 of 20 (93 views)
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I like your idea about 'memory' [In reply to] Can't Post

There's something intriguing about that expression. It seems to clearly indicate a *feeling* but a deeply inner feeling that is hard to read. I appreciate the Orlando didn't kind of mug it for the camera to try to convey something. It's more like he felt something and let that appear on his face in whatever way it would.

It's a bit sad, isn't it? It might indicate that he has moved from the first shock such that he is remembering the things that he will miss.


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Magpie
Immortal


Jul 26 2012, 4:26pm

Post #14 of 20 (119 views)
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Three *topics to ponder* then. :-P [In reply to] Can't Post

It was interesting to read your thoughts on composition knowing that my next screencap was going to go there completely.

Design is an intriguing and elusive subject/concept for me. I am attracted to it, which is what drove me to graphic design at age 50. And I know have some training and experience in it but I'm such a padawan. But I'm much more observant than I used to be and those lights just seem to finish off that composition in a very subtle way. It think it would have been a completely different 'shot' without them. I think they keep negative space from being *too* negative but they also function like those Mountains in Leaf by Niggle:


Quote
'You could go on and on, and have a whole country in a garden, or in a picture (if you preferred to call it that). You could go on and on, but not perhaps for ever. There were the Mountains in the background. They did get nearer, very slowly. They did not seem to belong to the picture, or only as a link to something else, a glimpse through the trees of something different, a further stage: another picture.'


Those lights remind us there is more we cannot see. They're a link to the larger mystery of Lorien.

So, for me, the do function as eye candy... but they also deepen the setting of the world by providing a 'link to something else'. Which makes me appreciate the artistic accomplishments of the movie all the more.


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Magpie
Immortal


Jul 26 2012, 4:38pm

Post #15 of 20 (92 views)
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Interesting observations [In reply to] Can't Post

Thinking about it the way you express it puts a stronger tone on the scene for me.

Merry asks Legolas to translate the Elvish Lament and the Elf answers, "I have not the heart to tell you. For me the grief is still too near."

I always thought of that as Legolas feeling something that was too painful to try to work at (translating) or linger with (the words of the lament).

But - after reading your post - am reminded that Legolas is amongst mortals at this point. He hears the immortals singing but he is not of them right now. He is amongst mortals who will die and can never fully understand the life of immortals and - with the exception of Aragorn - do not truly understand who Gandalf was and what the full significance of his death.

I can see where that would create a distance in him - not just from the loss of Gandalf but from being in a group who can't fully understand the situation or his own feelings.

And thinking about this moment, I am reminded that the Elves did not mingle much with mortals at all, especially the Woodland Elves. Legolas really is extending himself to travel with these mortals and 'the Dwarf'. It really deepens my appreciation of what kind of person he was.


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Magpie
Immortal


Jul 26 2012, 4:39pm

Post #16 of 20 (88 views)
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Thanks, SA [In reply to] Can't Post

I knew we'd have someone who could come through pretty quickly.

:-)


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Magpie
Immortal


Jul 26 2012, 4:45pm

Post #17 of 20 (106 views)
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err.... [In reply to] Can't Post

quietly stands next to HH about the fangirl thing. And I don't know about you but I was embarrassingly old to be having a fangirl crush. It was silly and amusing and my whole family laughed at me.

And I had a few Legolas desktop images.

But I'd always been attracted to the Elves since 1967 and when I met the man I would marry I said he looked like I imagined Tolkien's Elves would look. So the affection was deeper than just the eye candy that is Orlando. :-)

I don't think Orlando nailed his role completely but I think he did a pretty good job and what he fell short on I can attribute to learning the craft and not really having his own relationship to the book or the character. I think he was fed a lot on the character from the writers and I didn't always agree with what they were going for. But I think he tried to please his employers and you can't fault him for that.

This screenshot is one I think he absolutely nailed. I will resist listing others because that would just be indulging in fangirlishness. lol


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SirDennisC
Half-elven


Jul 26 2012, 5:53pm

Post #18 of 20 (95 views)
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I agree [In reply to] Can't Post

without the lights the image would be lacking something. It would still fall within the range of a decent composition, especially with the Mallorn tree base doing what it does in the shot. The lights though give it just a little bit more... you can almost imagine them as celestial bodies in a tilted elliptical orbit around Leggy's head. And far from being just eye-candy they do, as you say, draw the eye to the background, to the dark there, to suggest they are in a wider space than just at the base of a tree.


Shelob'sAppetite
Valinor

Jul 26 2012, 7:52pm

Post #19 of 20 (84 views)
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Always at your service, Lady Magpie! [In reply to] Can't Post

 


batik
Tol Eressea


Jul 29 2012, 9:01pm

Post #20 of 20 (206 views)
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reflections, yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

the word memory has been used in a couple/few replies and that's just the word that comes to my mind when looking at Legolas (it's the eyes!) I don't see "pain" here--that was shown minutes after Gandalf's fall. Maybe also the realization of big change in plans ahead.

 
 

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