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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
If Radagast were re-thought and re-written AUJ would be a much better movie...
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macfalk
Valinor


Jan 20 2013, 8:09am

Post #26 of 89 (329 views)
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I don't think it's 80-90% right now though [In reply to] Can't Post

More like 60% female and 40% male or so. On other websites, it's probably the other way around.



The greatest adventure is what lies ahead.

(This post was edited by macfalk on Jan 20 2013, 8:10am)


Angharad73
Rohan

Jan 20 2013, 8:37am

Post #27 of 89 (304 views)
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Could have done with less bird poo... [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes, I could have done with less bird poo (on his face - ok, that squicked me out a little...), but otherwise I actually liked Radagast. He's eccentric, a little (well, a lot) strange and very funny. He kind of dances to his own tune, and that is something I like. I love the rabbits and the hedgehogs. And he does show that despite not looking like a 'proper' wizard, he has a good bit of magical power in him. He is also courageous - or just really, really mad, if you consider the rabbits vs. wargs chase.

And I got a good laugh out of Saruman's mushroom comment.


imin
Valinor


Jan 20 2013, 9:18am

Post #28 of 89 (299 views)
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Could not agree with you more [In reply to] Can't Post

Everything said here is correct and i see it as another case of PJ just going that one step too far and making things too obvious.

As you say his character could have been done so so much better. My reaction to him softened somewhat after i saw the film a second time but that was more out of resignation than actual liking the character.

It just seems like they took every little description of him and ran with it for cheap laughs which ultimately stumps his characterization meaning he becomes the figure of ridicule that saruman talks about rather than the eccentric but still powerful wizard that gandalf mentions.

Was a great opportunity missed.


dormouse
Half-elven


Jan 20 2013, 9:41am

Post #29 of 89 (300 views)
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No, he's fine as he is.... [In reply to] Can't Post

... after all, it was Tolkien, not Peter Jackson, who identified him as being absorbed with the natural world, and birds in particular. And what's inappropriate about showing bird droppings in his hair and beard? That's what birds do - and he has a whole nest of 'em under his hat. I wouldn't mind betting Long John Silver had a fair amount down the back of his coat. What it says about Radagast is that his mind is on other things - he doesn't fuss about non-essentials. He reminds me of the description of Merlyn in TH White's 'The Sword in the Stone':

Close inspection showed that he was far from clean. It was not that he had dirty fingernails, or anything like that, but some large bird seemed to have been nesting in his hair. . . . The old man was streaked with the droppings over his shoulders, among the stars and triangles of his gown, and a large spider was slowly lowering itself from the tip of his hat, as he gazed and slowly blinked at the little boy in front of him. He had a worried expression. . . .

I've never been keen on Sylvester McCoy as an actor, but I think the design and characterisation of Radagast is superb - very firmly in the tradition of White's Merlyn and others of the type. This Radagast isn't a buffoon. He knows his his forest, his creatures as no one else does - and he has real power too, but you can see precisely why Saruman, at the other end of the wizard spectrum, would despise him.


Roheryn
Grey Havens

Jan 20 2013, 10:34am

Post #30 of 89 (288 views)
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*SQUEEE* He's so CUTE I just want to stroke his [In reply to] Can't Post

bellybutton!!!! I mean, have you seen it?!!? Surrounded by just the right amount of soft, fuzzy hair? *swoooooon* And even better, he's got more pricks* than I'd know what to do with!!!!



*(= prickles, in the US)


Kendalf
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 11:13am

Post #31 of 89 (275 views)
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A nice interpretation! [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
He has taken on some animal characteristics - excitability and a touch of panic when his little world is threatened...There is plenty of dignity and mythic grandeur elsewhere in Middle Earth - why not a little absurdity. Fun!



That's a nice interpretation, lyndomiel Smile And, like you, I enjoyed his twitchy anxiety when he detected things weren't quite right in his woodland domain. It's just that, for me, on too many occasions, this delightful zoomorphism faded away and the character was reduced to some fairly heavy-handed attempts to elicit a laugh from the audience.

What if he didn't forget what he was talking about? What if he didn't find a stick insect in his mouth? What if he didn't go cross-eyed when having a puff of Old Toby? Do you not think he would have been a little more unearthly, a little more arcane...a little more Tolkien?

"I have found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love."


Kendalf
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 11:21am

Post #32 of 89 (261 views)
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Very true [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Can't change him anyway so just have to live with him as he is.



Indeed Crazy My only hope is that, in the subsequent movies, his buffoonery (as I see it) is reined back and he starts to take on a stature more befitting of one of the Istari. I suspect (and hope!) that events around Dol Guldur will provide the character with this opportunity.

"I have found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love."


Kendalf
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 11:30am

Post #33 of 89 (268 views)
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This isn't "nitpicking" [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
(Sorry, but...no.) Radagast was just fine. In fact, I loved him. This just sounds like nitpicking to me, tbh.



No need to apologise Smile

But, seriously, "nitpicking"? Perhaps if I'd criticised the hue of his cloak, yes. Perhaps if I'd complained that the bird-poo didn't look real enough, yes. Perhaps if I'd suggested there's no way the forest floor could be smooth enough (and free of obstruction) to allow a bunny-sled to be a viable method of transportation, yes.

But I didn't. And instead, the points I raised, I believe, when taken together, amount to a valid criticism of the overall portrayal of the character in this first film.

Sorry Wink

"I have found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love."


Kendalf
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 11:33am

Post #34 of 89 (286 views)
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Put perfectly, imin [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
It just seems like they took every little description of him and ran with it for cheap laughs which ultimately stumps his characterization meaning he becomes the figure of ridicule that saruman talks about rather than the eccentric but still powerful wizard that gandalf mentions.

Exactly.

"I have found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love."


Magpie
Immortal


Jan 20 2013, 2:40pm

Post #35 of 89 (238 views)
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I have a hedgehog! [In reply to] Can't Post

at least one that sits on my shelf: hedgehog

I've had it (I actually have two of these I liked them so much) for perhaps 20 years or so.

And if you look hard enough, you might find an old ratty Steiff hedgehog, Micki, in this collection.


LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
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bborchar
Rohan

Jan 20 2013, 3:00pm

Post #36 of 89 (238 views)
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I thought he was fine... [In reply to] Can't Post

He is supposed to be very different from Gandalf and Saruman. He can do some serious magic, and does have courage. He's just eccentric. Plus he's only in the film for a few minutes...it's not as if he takes over the movie. He just comes in to kick off the Necromancer's plot.


Eowyn3
Rivendell

Jan 20 2013, 3:02pm

Post #37 of 89 (226 views)
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Radagast [In reply to] Can't Post

I sooo agree! As much as I love the movie, and hate all the people bashing the Hobbit, I have to agree with you. I believe PJ went way overboard with Radagast. Come on, bird poop on the side of his head? I don't think he did much justice to the character of Radagast by depicting him like a total idiot.Frown


Grant
The Shire

Jan 20 2013, 4:04pm

Post #38 of 89 (215 views)
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Don't think that would make much of a difference [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't think he was in the movie that much to make a huge difference. I guess if they dropped the character and some other things it would maybe kept the movie to a reasonable length for some people but I personally got a kick out of him.

I think critics had more of an issue with pacing and length then bird excrement and rabbit sleds.


Kendalf
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 4:44pm

Post #39 of 89 (200 views)
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You're absolutely right [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I don't think he was in the movie that much to make a huge difference...
I think critics had more of an issue with pacing and length then bird excrement and rabbit sleds.


This is quite evidently true.

Sorry, I should perhaps have been a little clearer. I'm not suggesting a Radagast re-write would see the Rotten Tomatoes average soar (or the even lower Metacritic one), just that it would lead to a more suiting depiction of the character...and therefore a "better" adaptation of the source material Smile

"I have found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love."


Kimtc
Rohan

Jan 20 2013, 4:46pm

Post #40 of 89 (219 views)
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Lego! Is there nothing hedgehogs can't do? [In reply to] Can't Post

So the question becomes, will AUJ start a run on people wanting hedgehogs? I mean, it's not like you can keep a dragon at home.


Aragalen the Green
Gondor


Jan 20 2013, 5:14pm

Post #41 of 89 (217 views)
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I've known people like Radagast [In reply to] Can't Post

(although not Wizards however :).

I live in the "Evergreen State", in the same town as a state college whose students are known as "Greeners". Many people take on a very back-to-nature lifestyle, Eco-friendly and fond of finding food out in the wild (mushrooms are very popular); eschewing processed foods and underarm deodorant and often bathing in patchouli and lavender (if they bathe at all).

I had one friend years ago who built a little house out in the woods with reclaimed lumber (it looked like a pile of boards lol). He would come visit me in town (to use my shower and do laundry), with twigs and moss and insects in his hair and beard. Very eccentric but also extremely intelligent and knew a lot about animals and plants.

So I have a soft spot for Radagast and his eccentricities. Sometimes outer appearances belie what a person is inside.

There it is: dwarves are not heroes, but calculating folk with a great idea of the value of money; some are tricky and treacherous and pretty bad lots; some are not, but are decent enough people like Thorin and Company, if you don't expect too much.


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Jan 20 2013, 5:27pm

Post #42 of 89 (205 views)
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I love Radagast in this film [In reply to] Can't Post

I love his presence, his eccentricities, his look, and his rabbits! His parts are some of those I look forward to the most!

There will always be pros and cons to everything. There will always be opinions of how things should be done. What Peter, Philippa and Fran have given us in their storytelling is beyond what I ever hoped for!

I can't wait to see what he does in the rest of the story :D



and first draught of TH:AUJ Geeky Observation List - updated list coming soon



sample

I'm SO HAPPY these new films take me back to that magical world!!



TORn's Geeky Observations Lists (updated soon)
LotR Unused Scenes



Ruxendil_Thoorg
Grey Havens


Jan 20 2013, 5:41pm

Post #43 of 89 (232 views)
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In defense of AUJ Radagast [In reply to] Can't Post

1) Yes, he should be a little eccentric; his self-imposed hermetic lifestyle should have resulted in a degree of social ineptitude, of communicatory incompetence. No, he shouldn't be an absent-minded buffoon.


Not an absent-minded buffoon. He was effective at every single endeavor.

2) Yes, there's an obvious scope in the above for a little humour, a little chuckle at unconventional, charming idiosyncracies. No, a stick insect materialising in his mouth isn't the right choice.

I didn't have a problem with it. It was odd, but not an inconsistency with the character from the books. It was as good a choice as any to show how his mind works.

3) Yes, he was known as "bird-tamer". No, a river of excrement down the side of his face isn't the most appropriate way of depicting this.

It seemed very appropriate to me. It said so much about him that was true to the character as written.

4) Yes, he was renowed for his love of the delicately balanced natural world and the creatures that inhabited it. No, giving him a pet hedgehog called Sebastian isn't the most subtle appoach.

Maybe not subtle, but I didn't have a problem with it. It was as a good a choice as anything else. Should it have been less ....cute? How to get that across without losing the pathos? Also: not a "pet", any more than the other animals were pets.


5) Yes, there is a precedent for supernatural beings in Germanic folklore being transported by means of unusual creatures. No, the ludicrous chase we were treated to doesn't quite match this mythic majesty.

I liked the chase, though I understand why it has been criticized. I liked how proud he was of his Rhosgobel rabbits, and rightly so as they proved effective.

6) Yes, McCoy is a fine, accomplished actor. No, getting him to act stoned isn't the greatest moment in his oeuvre.

McCoy was a bit of a ham, especially in that instance, but must we ignore the other parts of his performance? He was at times very focused when it was needed.


I have absolutely no problem with Radagast's inclusion in the film, or the function that he serves (to alert Gandalf to the growing evil in Greenwood the Great). I just think it all could have been done so, so, so much better.

Don't you?

Possibly but I happened to like this version. To each his/her own.

A bag is like a hole that you can carry with you.

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Chainsaw Charlie
Bree


Jan 20 2013, 5:53pm

Post #44 of 89 (193 views)
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Princess and the Pea. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I just think it all could have been done so, so, so much better.

Don't you?


Happily, no. There were worse things in the film (indeed, more cringe-worthy things in each of the LOTR films). Perfection is impossible. Luxuriate in what you get. Not every moment is gold. But I liked most of it. (Then again, I'm a glass half-full kind of person, and being that it's a fantasy genre, I don't feel a compulsion to nail down a director or writer on the small stuff..)


(This post was edited by Chainsaw Charlie on Jan 20 2013, 5:55pm)


Chainsaw Charlie
Bree


Jan 20 2013, 6:02pm

Post #45 of 89 (200 views)
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IMO it was a great opportunity taken. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Was a great opportunity missed.


So we'll just have to agree to disagree. Then again, maybe this stuff is far more preciouss to you than it is to me. The important stuff, they got it right; and Radagast, me and the kids loved it. (But as I said previous, I am probably more forgiving, and perhaps PJ should provide more "special needs" to the Princess and the Pea, 'cos for some fans those little peas feel like the Shards of Narsil poking their eyes and abdomens through the comfort of their soft fluffy mattresses.)


hutch
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 7:10pm

Post #46 of 89 (174 views)
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Actually, [In reply to] Can't Post

the burping and fighting were my mom's favorite bits. And it's been documented that hot dwarves and Tauriel were insisted upon by the female writers. Tongue

Davy Jones could've been Bilbo...I mean he was a Brit with a sense for adventure, singing & dancing. And think of the costs it would've save with forced perspective: he was ACTUALLY 5'3. He also hung out with a grumpy tall dude in a hat (Mike Nesmith.) While we're at it let's just have Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork as Merry & Pippin.


(This post was edited by hutch on Jan 20 2013, 7:11pm)


hutch
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 7:13pm

Post #47 of 89 (168 views)
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What's your beef with the stick insect? [In reply to] Can't Post

This is probably the least of the 'buffoonery' if you want to call it that. Radagast was little much, but not too much, much. Ha.

Davy Jones could've been Bilbo...I mean he was a Brit with a sense for adventure, singing & dancing. And think of the costs it would've save with forced perspective: he was ACTUALLY 5'3. He also hung out with a grumpy tall dude in a hat (Mike Nesmith.) While we're at it let's just have Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork as Merry & Pippin.


hutch
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 7:16pm

Post #48 of 89 (168 views)
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if Radagast was played serious... [In reply to] Can't Post

...then Saruman would have no reason to call him a 'fool'.

Davy Jones could've been Bilbo...I mean he was a Brit with a sense for adventure, singing & dancing. And think of the costs it would've save with forced perspective: he was ACTUALLY 5'3. He also hung out with a grumpy tall dude in a hat (Mike Nesmith.) While we're at it let's just have Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork as Merry & Pippin.


hutch
Rohan


Jan 20 2013, 7:18pm

Post #49 of 89 (160 views)
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At first [In reply to] Can't Post

I thought the bird poo was a trail of 'shrooms' grwoing on his face, but then I realized otherwise ("ewww...")

but I like it. Reminds me of the old PJ-which incidentally is the young PJ.

Davy Jones could've been Bilbo...I mean he was a Brit with a sense for adventure, singing & dancing. And think of the costs it would've save with forced perspective: he was ACTUALLY 5'3. He also hung out with a grumpy tall dude in a hat (Mike Nesmith.) While we're at it let's just have Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork as Merry & Pippin.


Angharad73
Rohan

Jan 20 2013, 7:37pm

Post #50 of 89 (150 views)
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Actually... [In reply to] Can't Post

when I first saw the bird poo, I was not sure what it was. I was thinking along the lines of mold (not that that would have been any less yucky). But eventually I did make the connection between the birds and that stuff... And then I spent the rest of his scenes wondering if he would ever wipe it off. Not big on general hygiene, is Radagast Crazy

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