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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
"The Burglar" Bilbo Baggins Takes On a Whole New Meaning in AUJ

Black Breathalizer
Rohan


Dec 29 2012, 4:34am


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"The Burglar" Bilbo Baggins Takes On a Whole New Meaning in AUJ Can't Post

One of the most inspired screenwriting decisions of AUJ was to have Bilbo witness Gollum dropping his ring rather than accidentally finding it in the dark as in the book. When Gollum left and Bilbo snatched the ring up from the cave floor, it gave Bilbo's role as the Company's "burglar" a dramatic new meaning. It was an unexpected--and some might say radical--departure from Tolkien, but each time I've watched that scene, the more I'm convinced of its brilliance.

How to present Bilbo's 'magic ring' always going to be a problem for Pete, Fran, and Phillipa. Because their film characterization of the One Ring was so much more corruptive than in Tolkien's books, they'd put themselves in a potential bind. How could they depict it in the new Hobbit films as simply a magic ring when it would take on a radical new characterization in the LOTR? It seemed to me prior to seeing the first film that while they had no choice but to depict it exactly as Tolkien depicted it--however---I thought there still needed to be at least some subtle foreshadowing of its evil for an audience.

By having Bilbo Baggins, who publicly declared earlier in the film that, " I've never stolen anything in my entire life," steal the golden ring he observed fall from Gollum's pocket, the audience was given its first clue that our good-hearted Hobbit hero was doing something that was not in character for him.

It's the type of retroactive alterations that Tolkien himself made to his Riddles in the Dark chapter of the Hobbit after he was well on his way to finishing his master work, the Lord of the Rings. With their own Riddles in the Dark revisions--highlighted by their depiction of "Thief Baggins"--Pete, Fran, and Phillipa have successfully followed in the Professor's footsteps.

Agree? Disagree? Your thoughts?

Subject User Time
"The Burglar" Bilbo Baggins Takes On a Whole New Meaning in AUJ Black Breathalizer Send a private message to Black Breathalizer Dec 29 2012, 4:34am
    I agree. Mooseboy018 Send a private message to Mooseboy018 Dec 29 2012, 4:45am
        That scene was insanity stoutfiles Send a private message to stoutfiles Dec 29 2012, 4:53am
        Bilbo not using invisibility Mahtion Send a private message to Mahtion Dec 29 2012, 4:53am
    He didn't witness it... jtarkey Send a private message to jtarkey Dec 29 2012, 4:45am
        Stolen or found? Black Breathalizer Send a private message to Black Breathalizer Dec 29 2012, 4:54am
            He doesn't seek the ring out duats Send a private message to duats Dec 29 2012, 4:55am
            This is one thing I find a bit disconcerting, as it removes some of Bilbo's innocence here, and thus changes many principles surrounding the occasion :s // Xanaseb Send a private message to Xanaseb Dec 29 2012, 11:01am
                You can rest easy jtarkey Send a private message to jtarkey Dec 29 2012, 11:16am
                    ok good good. It is a -bit- hard for me to remember, haven't seen it in over a week LOL // Xanaseb Send a private message to Xanaseb Dec 29 2012, 7:12pm
            Put me in the sauget.diblosio Send a private message to sauget.diblosio Dec 29 2012, 5:23pm
        I agree that Bilbo doesn't put two and two together until Gollum makes a big deal about having lost something. Bladerunner Send a private message to Bladerunner Dec 29 2012, 5:45am
            Perspective Rostron2 Send a private message to Rostron2 Dec 29 2012, 10:07pm
        This DanielLB Send a private message to DanielLB Dec 29 2012, 10:13am
            oops Black Breathalizer Send a private message to Black Breathalizer Dec 29 2012, 2:06pm
                Question is .... DanielLB Send a private message to DanielLB Dec 29 2012, 4:30pm
                    Because Bilbo was meant to find it.... dormouse Send a private message to dormouse Dec 29 2012, 5:04pm
    He tries to steal the Troll's knife stoutfiles Send a private message to stoutfiles Dec 29 2012, 4:50am
    Pocketses Joe-Mathews Send a private message to Joe-Mathews Dec 29 2012, 5:07am
    I looked for this the last time I saw the film Lissuin Send a private message to Lissuin Dec 29 2012, 9:57am
    Movies vs books RalphDamiani Send a private message to RalphDamiani Dec 29 2012, 12:00pm
    "Thief! Baggins!" Ruxendil_Thoorg Send a private message to Ruxendil_Thoorg Dec 29 2012, 2:01pm
        It really wasn't Bilbo's decision to keep the Ring, Aragalen the Green Send a private message to Aragalen the Green Dec 29 2012, 5:30pm
            The Ring likely had influence, sure. Ruxendil_Thoorg Send a private message to Ruxendil_Thoorg Dec 29 2012, 7:04pm
                Decisions, decisions! Aragalen the Green Send a private message to Aragalen the Green Dec 30 2012, 3:06am
                    Distinctions, distinctions :-) Ruxendil_Thoorg Send a private message to Ruxendil_Thoorg Dec 31 2012, 2:59am
    The only thing that spoilt such a great scene was Arandir Send a private message to Arandir Dec 29 2012, 7:12pm
    Wow. flameofudun Send a private message to flameofudun Dec 30 2012, 2:50am
    No, sorry, didn't work for me - at all Pousette Send a private message to Pousette Dec 30 2012, 4:45pm

 
 
 

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