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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Lord of the Rings:
SCOD: The Decline of Gondor

Silwen_Peredhil
Rivendell


Sep 4 2013, 2:21pm

Post #1 of 10 (456 views)
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SCOD: The Decline of Gondor Can't Post

Welcome to another Screencap of the Day.


Here is the image:



You can find the full sized image here.


What struck me was the way Gandalf and Pippin seem to be stepping out from the shadows of the hall in comparison to when they first arrived.

1) Do you think this is to visually represent the fact that a shadow doesn’t just lie outside but also inside the walls of Minas Tirith?

2) What do you think about the composition and lighting in the image?

3) Gandalf’s narrative to Pippin of the Decline of Gondor, I thought, was a lovely addition to the film.
....i) Does it help convey that the first impression of the white city being very grand and mighty can be a little deceiving?
....ii)Do you think Gandalf tells Pippin because he feels that Pippin should know its history now that he has offered his service to Denethor, or do you think there was another reason?
....iii) What do you think about the music in this scene in comparison to what we heard when Gandalf first arrives?

4)

Quote
When the shadow of Mordor reaches this city it will begin.

Do you think Pippin starts to understand the danger he’s entangled himself in when Gandalf says this, especially now that he can see Mordor for himself?

5) Any other thoughts or comments about this scene?

What's this? A Ranger caught off his guard?


Faleel
Rohan

Sep 4 2013, 2:37pm

Post #2 of 10 (253 views)
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My [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
1) Do you think this is to visually represent the fact that a shadow doesn’t just lie outside but also inside the walls of Minas Tirith?

Yes.


Quote
2) What do you think about the composition and lighting in the image?

I find it interesting, that the shadow behind Gandalf, is darker than the shadow of Mordor in the distance, almost representing that it seems darker and more hopeless to Denethor than it really is.


Quote
3) Gandalf’s narrative to Pippin of the Decline of Gondor, I thought, was a lovely addition to the film.
....i) Does it help convey that the first impression of the white city being very grand and mighty can be a little deceiving?
....ii)Do you think Gandalf tells Pippin because he feels that Pippin should know its history now that he has offered his service to Denethor, or do you think there was another reason?
....iii) What do you think about the music in this scene in comparison to what we heard when Gandalf first arrives?

Yes.
Yes.
Its much more reflective and sad, I love how the Realm of Gondor theme plays incompletely, but never lets you know if it will be the Ascension phrase or the Descension phrase.


Quote
4)
Quote
When the shadow of Mordor reaches this city it will begin.
Do you think Pippin starts to understand the danger he’s entangled himself in when Gandalf says this, especially now that he can see Mordor for himself?

Yes, I think thats why he wants to leave so quickly, and I believe he was trying to change the mood as well ("Well, thats great, where to next?")


Quote
5) Any other thoughts or comments about this scene?



Minas Tirith theme is great!



Darkstone
Immortal


Sep 4 2013, 5:59pm

Post #3 of 10 (227 views)
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Well [In reply to] Can't Post

1) Do you think this is to visually represent the fact that a shadow doesn’t just lie outside but also inside the walls of Minas Tirith?

Yep:

”Something festers in the heart of Middle Earth. Something that you have failed to see. But the great eye has seen it! Even now he presses his advantage. His attack will come soon.”


2) What do you think about the composition and lighting in the image?

Fantastic! There is darkness in Mordor, there is darkness in the throneroom, but the light of the White City endures!


3) Gandalf’s narrative to Pippin of the Decline of Gondor, I thought, was a lovely addition to the film.

Actually it was cut from the film. This is an EE scene. Interestingly, this scene was Jackson’s favorite ROTK scene, and, as he remembered, one of the first he visualized in planning the film. He said it was very hard to cut it, but he felt it necessary for the pacing of the film. Note he also cut his favorite scenes in both FOTR (The gift-giving) and TTT (Treebeard’s poetry). It’s said great directors are those who have the wisdom to “kill their babies” (cut their favorite scenes) for the sake of the film.


i) Does it help convey that the first impression of the white city being very grand and mighty can be a little deceiving?

Like Denethor.


ii)Do you think Gandalf tells Pippin because he feels that Pippin should know its history now that he has offered his service to Denethor, or do you think there was another reason?

Consider:

“All had turned to vain ambition. He would use even his grief as a cloak! A thousand years this city has stood and now at the whim of a madman it will fall! And the white tree, the tree of the King will never bloom again.”

“Why are they still guarding it?”

“They guard it because they have hope. A faint and fading hope that one day it will flower. That a king will come and this city will be as it once was before it fell into decay.”



This very nicely sets up the scene (cut from the theatrical release) where the single blossom of the White Tree is seen during Denethor’s procession with Faramir to the Tomb of the Stewards. Personally I find that to be one of the most powerful moments in ROTK.


....iii) What do you think about the music in this scene in comparison to what we heard when Gandalf first arrives?

Nice.


4)
________________________________________ Quote ________________________________________
When the shadow of Mordor reaches this city it will begin.
________________________________________
Do you think Pippin starts to understand the danger he’s entangled himself in when Gandalf says this, especially now that he can see Mordor for himself?


“Starts” is the appropriate word. It does take a while.


5) Any other thoughts or comments about this scene?

It's interesting that this scene forms the middle arc with The Voice of Saruman and The Tomb of the Stewards. So if one was cut for the TE, all three must be wholly or partially cut.

******************************************
“That hobbit has a pleasant face,
His private life is a disgrace.
I really could not tell to you,
The awful things that hobbits do.”


Nuradar
Rohan


Sep 5 2013, 2:50pm

Post #4 of 10 (192 views)
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Aged halls and musing on heraldry [In reply to] Can't Post

1) Do you think this is to visually represent the fact that a shadow doesn’t just lie outside but also inside the walls of Minas Tirith?
No, but now you mention it, it's some pretty nice symbolism.

2) What do you think about the composition and lighting in the image?
Just brilliant. The dark foreground makes our eyes focus immediately on Mordor and two of our heroes, who face it directly.

3) Gandalf’s narrative to Pippin of the Decline of Gondor, I thought, was a lovely addition to the film.
....i) Does it help convey that the first impression of the white city being very grand and mighty can be a little deceiving?
I didn't find it deceiving. I just took it at face value - he was familiarizing Pippin with the history of the city and why Denethor is a Steward and not a King.

....ii)Do you think Gandalf tells Pippin because he feels that Pippin should know its history now that he has offered his service to Denethor, or do you think there was another reason?
More because of the first reason. He knows that he and Pippin are now fixed to this place and others must come. They're not going anywhere, so he wants Pippin to be familiar with the place.
....iii) What do you think about the music in this scene in comparison to what we heard when Gandalf first arrives?
I actually don't remember it!!! The shame...

4)
Quote
When the shadow of Mordor reaches this city it will begin.
Do you think Pippin starts to understand the danger he’s entangled himself in when Gandalf says this, especially now that he can see Mordor for himself?
Absolutely



Werde Spinner
Rohan


Sep 5 2013, 9:05pm

Post #5 of 10 (186 views)
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The colors are amazing! [In reply to] Can't Post

(1) Yes. The shadow lies upon the tombs of all those dead Numenoreans.

(2) The only thing that comes to my mind at the moment (and I swear I haven't had chocolate today) is the scene from the beginning of The Lion King where the giraffes step out into the sun. Don't ask me why I thought of "The Circle of Life" at this moment, but I did. The time of the Stewards is up; it is time for the king to return and complete the circle.

(3) (i) Yes. (ii) Yes, he does tell Pippin to impress the full truth on him. Being Gandalf, he may certainly have had other motives, but I cannot think of them at the moment. (iii) Melancholy, hovering in potentia. The doom of Minas Tirith is as of yet undecided.

(4) Yes, even Pippin understands. "...but waiting on the edge of [a battle] I can't escape is even worse." I think of that line often before something I'm dreading.

(5) I'd like to know more about those fountain guards. The Lord of the Rings: Weapons and Warfare says they wear black cloths over their mouths, as a reminder that they are not to speak while on duty. I wonder why? There are benches placed around the White Tree... who sits there? The Steward and his family? Did the kings and their families sit there a long time ago? (Is this where Aragorn and Arwen were sitting in the book when she gives Frodo her jewel?) You'd think you'd want a bit more of a sheltered location, though... rather low guardrails and all. It's got to be extremely windy up there, too. Not to mention cold.

"I had forgotten that. It is hard to be sure of anything among so many marvels. The world is all grown strange. Elf and Dwarf in company walk in our daily fields; and folk speak with the Lady of the Wood and yet live; and the Sword comes back to war that was broken in the long ages ere the fathers of our fathers rode into the Mark! How shall a man judge what to do in such times?"

"As he ever has judged. Good and ill have not changed since yesteryear; nor are they one thing among Elves and Dwarves and another among Men. It is a man's part to discern them, as much in the Golden Wood as in his own house."


FrogmortonJustice65
Rivendell


Sep 6 2013, 3:07am

Post #6 of 10 (175 views)
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I've always loved this scene. [In reply to] Can't Post

It adds a sense of weight and history to the story; and Howard Shore's score for this scene is beautiful and poignant. It features a nice reference to the Minas Tirith/Silver Trumpets theme (I think that's what Doug Adams calls it) that was teased back in FOTR when Boromir described the White City to Aragorn in Lothlorien. A very subtle musical thread that adds alot of depth to the score and the story.

And honestly, I've thought alot about the dialogue in this scene lately; Gandalf's reminiscence about Gondor's golden days reminds me of the discourse surrounding the real-life city of Detroit, Michigan, which was once one of America's biggest and brightest cities and has now fallen into disrepair, and very recently, bankruptcy. Unfortunately, Detroit needs more than the return of a long-absent king at this point.

But anyway, I've really enjoyed these last few SCOD's. Pippin and Gandalf's first few scenes in Gondor are very memorable for me.

 photo cbccab4e-f61e-4be5-aaa1-20e302430c7c.jpg


Werde Spinner
Rohan


Sep 6 2013, 2:48pm

Post #7 of 10 (176 views)
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Totally off the subject [In reply to] Can't Post

but I *love* your avatar of LEGO Merry and Pippin!!! Smile

"I had forgotten that. It is hard to be sure of anything among so many marvels. The world is all grown strange. Elf and Dwarf in company walk in our daily fields; and folk speak with the Lady of the Wood and yet live; and the Sword comes back to war that was broken in the long ages ere the fathers of our fathers rode into the Mark! How shall a man judge what to do in such times?"

"As he ever has judged. Good and ill have not changed since yesteryear; nor are they one thing among Elves and Dwarves and another among Men. It is a man's part to discern them, as much in the Golden Wood as in his own house."


flameofudun
Lorien

Sep 7 2013, 1:51am

Post #8 of 10 (158 views)
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Yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

I live near Detroit, in Canada across the border, and you described it quite well. In other notes I really do love this scene... Correct me if I'm wrong but it is from the EE right?

''We are very dangerous over short distances''

-Gimli


FrogmortonJustice65
Rivendell


Sep 7 2013, 10:39pm

Post #9 of 10 (201 views)
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yup, it's EE only I believe. [In reply to] Can't Post

Its absence always stands out when I watch the theatrical edition.

 photo cbccab4e-f61e-4be5-aaa1-20e302430c7c.jpg


flameofudun
Lorien

Sep 9 2013, 1:44am

Post #10 of 10 (126 views)
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Thought so.. [In reply to] Can't Post

I only own the EE of ROTK so I sometimes get confused. Nevertheless a great scene, with great background.

''We are very dangerous over short distances''

-Gimli

 
 

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