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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Middle-earth TV Series Discussion:
Tom Shippey is no longer on the project
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Voronwë_the_Faithful
Valinor

Apr 20, 12:24am

Post #26 of 35 (2759 views)
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Thanks, N.E.B. [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm glad to hear that you have had good experiences with him.

I look forward to the day that I will get to interact with you a conference again!

'But very bright were the stars upon the margin of the world, when at times the clouds about the West were drawn aside.'

The Hall of Fire


Noria
Gondor

Apr 20, 1:25pm

Post #27 of 35 (2705 views)
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Art vs history [In reply to] Can't Post

Movies are art and/or entertainment not documentaries. We all know that director and writers will often ignore or sidestep historical or biographical accuracy in favour of their creative objectives. It is a different mindset from that of a historian or history buff.

Shakespeare’s historical plays come to mind.

That being said, I agree that this type of artistic license can be dangerous because people may accept what they see as actual truth instead of recognizing it is a story (which in itself may have great artistic merit), merely inspired by real events. But for better and for worse, it’s a long established feature of movie-making.


Solicitr
Gondor


Apr 20, 1:35pm

Post #28 of 35 (2704 views)
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Well, [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
We all know that director and writers will often ignore or sidestep historical or biographical accuracy in favour of their creative objectives.


Well, that's true enough... assuming that the objective is actually artistic, and not simply ignorance, audience pandering or falling back on tired cliches.

Lean creating the composite character Ali is defensible on artistic grounds. So, even, is Shakespeare converting Clarence from the treacherous wolfshead he really was into an innocent martyr to Richard's ambition. Wallace and Gibson turning Isabel from a little girl into a hot babe, not so much.


Chen G.
Rohan

Apr 20, 1:41pm

Post #29 of 35 (2700 views)
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Without Isabella's affair [In reply to] Can't Post

we wouldn't have that cathartic moment of spite against the dying Longshanks.

To see Isabella turn into a shrewd spinstress is soul-crushing and vindicative in equal measures. Its simply wonderful, and I get much, much more out that than I ever got out of Ali in Lawrence of Arabia.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Apr 20, 1:42pm)


Solicitr
Gondor


Apr 20, 1:46pm

Post #30 of 35 (2694 views)
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Subject [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
we wouldn't have that cathartic moment of spite against the dying Longshanks.

To see Isabella turn into a shrewd spinstress is soul-crushing and vindicative in equal measures. Its simply wonderful, and I get much, much more out that than I ever got out of Ali in Lawrence of Arabia.


Bingo. Audience pandering.


Chen G.
Rohan

Apr 20, 1:48pm

Post #31 of 35 (2689 views)
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Nope. Rather, it is the power of cinema [In reply to] Can't Post

 


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Apr 20, 1:51pm)


Solicitr
Gondor


Apr 20, 2:05pm

Post #32 of 35 (2681 views)
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Subject [In reply to] Can't Post

the power of cinema over an audience which, hobbit-like, prefers them "full of things they already know, laid out fair and square;" audiences who expect and are comforted by the same old tropes and cliche's mixed slightly differently and warmed over like a bad Mexican restaurant.

Now, there's certainly room for big dumb troperific popcorn films. I like Indiana Jones and Die Hard and (original) Star Wars as much as the next guy. But I don't confuse them with art and I don't hand them Best Picture Oscars. They're light entertainment.

The problem is, that's exactly where Boyens and Jackson are coming from: the Lucas and (pop) Spielberg tradition. They just can't think outside the light-entertainment box, which is why when trying for "epic" all they get is bombastic and bloated. Del Toro would have been far more interesting-- even though likely he would have offended every Purist from here to Mongolia, it would have been different and interesting. Something like Kubrick's Shining: a lousy adaptation but a great movie.


Chen G.
Rohan

Apr 20, 2:35pm

Post #33 of 35 (2680 views)
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And how is Lean's Lawrence of Arabia not that [In reply to] Can't Post

where Braveheart and The Lord of the Rings are?

Mind you, I love all three.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Apr 20, 2:48pm)


kzer_za
Lorien

Apr 20, 10:41pm

Post #34 of 35 (2628 views)
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I do think it's worth noting that Braveheart more or less disclaims any historical accuracy [In reply to] Can't Post

Saying "historians from England will say I'm a liar, but history is written by those who hang heroes" in the opening voiceover sounds like Gibson telegraphing he's not sticking to history in a way that doesn't break the fourth wall.

As for Braveheart as as whole, I remember enjoying it but it's been so long that I don't really have a strong opinion. Certainly its visuals are gorgeous, the script I would have to rewatch to judge.

Lawrence of Arabia is a definitely a much more ambiguous movie than Braveheart though - Wallace is a highly idealized hero; it's debatable whether Lawrence is a hero at all.There is room for both types of protagonists, though there are very few movies that can compare to Lawrence (I've seen it twice on the big screen too!)


(This post was edited by kzer_za on Apr 20, 10:55pm)


Chen G.
Rohan

Apr 21, 8:29am

Post #35 of 35 (2568 views)
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Lawrence is just a tragic hero [In reply to] Can't Post

An admirable character who’s objectives, character and finally his own life are beset by his tragic flaws of hubris, mockery, thril-seeking and sadism. Likewise, Lean’s Nicholson is a tragic figure, albeit with different flaws. So is Jackson’s Thorin.

Tragic heroes are no less formulaic than any other kind of hero. They go as far back as Gilgamesh. At the end of the day, all human storytelling is formulaic.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Apr 21, 8:30am)

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