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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
The aftermath of BOFA - is it just me?


Mar 4 2014, 9:15am

Post #1 of 8 (897 views)
The aftermath of BOFA - is it just me? Can't Post

I just re-read The Hobbit for the 1000th time, but it was a few years since I read it and for the first time in English. I was shocked by my own reaction - I thought that all those times I'd read it and my aging would lessen the impact, but it did not. The chapter after the BOFA, around and after Thorin's deathbed part, made an emotional wreck (could also have something to do with my grandfather passing away the other day, but still). I think this part is Tolkien's finest hour, describing the aftermath of battle that he knew so well himself... it is by far my favourite part of any of his writings.

I guess what I want to say with this that TABA has the opportunity to really deliver an ending that is as powerful as ROTK, and it should even surpass it. I do hope with all my heart that PJ follows the book here, and I'll be a wreck at the end of TABA, which we should if he succeeds.

The greatest adventure is what lies ahead.

(This post was edited by macfalk on Mar 4 2014, 9:19am)


Mar 4 2014, 9:32am

Post #2 of 8 (454 views)
Agree 100% with you. [In reply to] Can't Post

I love the way Kili and Fili's deaths are mentioned in passing. It really builds up the emotion, showing that not everyone came out alive, and was even costy for the company

"And do you really think, Thorin Oakenshield, that Bolg will have the slightest symphony for you? After he watched you hack his fathers hand off, so ruthlessly in Moria. Azogs defeat has brought nothing to you, only refuelled hate of his kin, upon yours"

Elanor of Rohan

Mar 4 2014, 11:08am

Post #3 of 8 (465 views)
there's a huge sense of bewilderment [In reply to] Can't Post

and loss in the aftermath of the battle. The same thing that happens after great tragic events, for example an earthquake (I witnessed a big one in my childhood): nobody really knows what to do.
And we feel it the more because our point of view is Bilbo's who had just come back to his senses, taken off the ring and was carried away to be cured.
I also wonder what our point of view will be in the film and if the deaths of Fili and Kili will be "live" or told in flashback. What a sad thought...


Mar 4 2014, 1:25pm

Post #4 of 8 (389 views)
The Post-battle scenes could become my favorite part of the 3 movies, [In reply to] Can't Post

alongside Gollum. If done book-respectfully, which I can see happening. I don't need the entire length of the Shire scenes, and could skip Rivendell and the troll treasure, but the Road Goes Ever On and On song would be a nice tie to LotR there.
I doubt it will come close to matching LotR for me, though, except where - and if - the key morale is included (the deathbed scene).

"A journalist once asked me what I would like my epitaph to be and I said I think I would like it to be 'He did very little harm'. And that's not easy. Most people seem to me to do a great deal of harm. If I could be remembered as having done very little, that would suit me." ~ Paul Eddington

Tol Eressea

Mar 4 2014, 6:05pm

Post #5 of 8 (296 views)
I've only read it twice, but had different reactions each time [In reply to] Can't Post

The first time I read TH was last summer before I had seen AUJ. I actually didn't realize until halfway through Thorin's deathbed speech that he was dying. I mean, I realized he had been badly injured, but I guess it was something about the older style of the language that kept me from understanding just how serious it was at first. I kept thinking, "Why does he sound like he's saying goodbye? Wait, is he dying? He died?! What? No!" Then when Bilbo started crying, that was the final confirmation for me that Thorin was really dead, and I started crying with him.

While I was a little sad for Kili and Fili I didn't react as much to their deaths on my first reading because they are sort of portrayed as minor characters in the book and I didn't have as much of an emotional attachment to them.

The second time I read TH was after I had finally seen AUJ and DOS and the experience was totally different. These two movies IMO did an excellent job of bringing all the dwarves to life and giving me a reason to care about each of them. The names in the book that I had had trouble keeping straight before now had faces and personalities that I could remember them by and that alone gave the story a whole new level of depth for me. By the time I had read up to the start of Bo5a again I realized that I was dreading the aftermath of the battle and the death of characters to which I was now emotionally attached. By the time Thorin started his speech on his deathbed I was a total mess and only cried harder when it was revealed that Kili and Fili had died too.

I'm going to need a truckload of tissues by the end of TABA!Frown

Btw, I'm so sorry about the loss of your grandfather! *hugs macfalk* I know how hard that can be. I do hope you'll feel better soon.Evil

"And we find what we're made of
Through the open door
Is it fear you're afraid of?
What are you waiting for?
Love alone is worth the fight."

Riven Delve
Tol Eressea

Mar 4 2014, 6:29pm

Post #6 of 8 (280 views)
Seeing the movies made a huge difference in how I felt too [In reply to] Can't Post

When I read TH as a youngster, I was mostly miffed after BOFA that Fili and Kili had died, because they were the only characters I liked in the book.

Once I had lived a little more, the ending became more poignant, because I could then relate to regrets, sorrows, and the unfairness of life at times.

But it wasn't until I had a real emotional attachment to the characters of TH after seeing AUJ that the ending really punched me. I felt what I never had before when reading it--that kind of feeling when you hit the water from the high dive. It stings, you can't breathe, you're not exactly sure where you are, and it's strangely silent, and you're flailing with all your might to get back to the air, because everything's going to be okay then, right? Right?

Yeah. Like that. Unsure

"My chief objection to a quarrel is that it ends a good argument." --G.K. Chesterton

Riven Delve
Tol Eressea

Mar 4 2014, 6:39pm

Post #7 of 8 (271 views)
Sorry to hear [In reply to] Can't Post

about your grandfather, macfalk. It does make a difference in how you respond to the end once you've known sorrow, doesn't it?

In Reply To
I think this part is Tolkien's finest hour, describing the aftermath of battle that he knew so well himself.

Yes, it is very clear to me that Tolkien knew firsthand the stunned sense of disbelief and confusion after crushing loss. It makes the scene all the more special to me that, having experienced it all, he chose not to gloss it over, nor dwell on it too long. I appreciate the "happy ending" of TH all the more because of it!

"My chief objection to a quarrel is that it ends a good argument." --G.K. Chesterton


Mar 4 2014, 7:31pm

Post #8 of 8 (246 views)
I was going to say the same thing [In reply to] Can't Post

You beat me to it Wink

I think knowing about Tolkien's past and his personal experiences with these topics makes the story all the more powerful.

keep smiling Smile


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