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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Lord of the Rings:
**SCOD: Mayhem in the Marshes...**


Oct 16 2012, 12:02am

Post #1 of 14 (596 views)
**SCOD: Mayhem in the Marshes...** Can't Post

Here's your first screencap for this week!

Questions, for your discussion pleasure...take your pick!

1. First thoughts when you look at this image? What do think about the lighting? The composition? The contrast between Sam and what you can see in the background?

2. If you did not know anything about the movie or book, what story does this shot tell, on its own? If it was a painting in a gallery, what might it be titled?

3. TTT begins with Frodo and Sam, and gradually introduces Gollum into their relationship. Is Sam already starting to be the odd man out at this point?

4. How well does the film portray Sam in this shot? Do you know "your Sam" ?

5. Other thoughts?

(Fun to be leading one of these again -- it's been so long, I had to go back and re-read Magpie's Image Posting Guidelines!)


Eye's on Guard

Oct 16 2012, 1:46am

Post #2 of 14 (294 views)
"Desolation and Determination" [In reply to] Can't Post

1. As for the lighting, I think it conveys the quest's descent into darkness while still incorporating distant light as a glimmer of hope.

2. See subject line

3. This is the very beginning of Frodo's becoming distant from Sam as he relates to Smeagol/Gollum and tries to learn more about him.

4. In the shot, you can see Sam's fear and awe. At the same time however, his expression is one of courage and determination to see the quest through.

5. Just watched the scene. This is a perfect example of a screencap shot that you probably wouldn't catch as the film rolls by. It's great!

One Ringer
Tol Eressea

Oct 17 2012, 12:47pm

Post #3 of 14 (243 views)
Awesome choice! [In reply to] Can't Post

Though it's a brief shot in the film, seeing it still like this, it feels like a perfect shot to perform a harsh push in on Sam, backed by high-pitched strings. Tongue Classic suspense.

Really great having you back here, weaver. Smile

FOTR 10th Anniversary Music Video - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=33xJU3AIwsg

"You do not let your eyes see nor your ears hear, and that which is outside your daily life is not of account to you. Ah, it is the fault of our science that it wants to explain all; and if it explain not, then it says there is nothing to explain."

Tol Eressea

Oct 18 2012, 7:19am

Post #4 of 14 (227 views)
Again, a screencap reveals something new [In reply to] Can't Post

This is a nice shot. You can almost hear the intake of breath as they realize that they are not alone.

Maybe it's just in this one little shot, but it's still significant that Sam is seperated from Frodo and Gollum. As your third question implies, I think PJ is definitely establishing the beginning of Sam being the third wheel.

If you're asking if film Sam is like book Sam, or what I imagined while reading - no, but not in a bad way. He's less of a rube, more deliberately heroic. Book Sam isn't stupid by any means, but his strength is his heart. His courage stems from his loyalty to Frodo. He's perceptive, but not as sharp as film Sam who seems to have more of an idea of what he's up against, but is determined to see things through. I would have liked more of book Sam with his rattling on about what his Gaffer says - I even imagined scenes where the camara pulls back and shows a wide shot, but you can still hear Sam burbling on Laugh- but the film incarnation worked for me, too.

Thanks, weaver! I don't know which is trickier, picking a shot and thinking up interesting questions, or trying to think of something original and intelligent to say in response. Tongue I usually state the bleeding obvious, but I like to try Smile


Oct 18 2012, 10:51pm

Post #5 of 14 (203 views)
Great find! [In reply to] Can't Post

Wow just when you think there are no more surprises in the screencap library!
I had to go back to the library to find when this moment occurred, because I just could not place it.
However before I did that, I decided to try to answer your questions -- first thoughts, what impression do I get, etc.?

Well, without knowing (er, remembering) when this moment took place, I definitely got a very heroic vibe from it. Sam here looks much larger, very determined, very focused - and I guess there's that symbolic/literal interpretation to that - once you find out when this is taking place.

So then I found that this takes place right after Frodo and Smeagol/Gollum are having their memory-jogging talk, traveling down memory lane, as it were, and they are jerked back to the present by the sound of the nazgul. So Sam here is very "focused", he's very alert to their surroundings, in contrast to Frodo and Smeagol/Gollum who are very hazy and still unfocused, and therefore vulnerable.

I don't see it so much as 'odd man out' as 'odd hero out', maybe -- the only one who is not yet being distracted by, and whose judgement is not being blurred by, the Ring.

This shot begins to show him in that different light, the heroic warrior who is focused when the others are losing their perspective because of the influence of the Ring.

Fantastic find, Weaver, thanks for finding this gem!


Oct 19 2012, 12:45am

Post #6 of 14 (198 views)
yep! [In reply to] Can't Post

Saying this is the start of Sam becoming distant from Frodo seems spot on to me!

Along those lines, I liked the clarity of the image of Sam up front, and the hazy/dream-like quality of Frodo and Sam in the background...like they are in one world, Sam's in another.



Oct 19 2012, 12:47am

Post #7 of 14 (201 views)
so that's what they were doing! [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't know much about film making, but I know you do! Thanks for pointing out some of the techniques they used to get the effect they wanted in this shot.

(And I'm glad to be back, too!)Smile



Oct 19 2012, 12:56am

Post #8 of 14 (192 views)
I think picking a shot is way harder than commenting! [In reply to] Can't Post

Never get behind me in a buffet line -- you'll be there all night! Smile Always much easier to ramble on, even if you do run the risk of "burbling on" like Sam -- ha! (Loved that description of how he does go on and on in the books at time.)

I liked your observation about how Movie Sam comes across, on screen, as a bit more heroic/noble than his "rube" book counterpart -- I guess that's because Tolkien can put us inside Sam's head, or can give us those glimpses of Sam through much longer passages of dialogue. And, he can also focus our attention just on Sam on the page, so we don't miss what's going on with him.

On screen, they've got to show us on the outside what's happening on the inside, and even then, it's easy to miss with so much else going on in terms of action, or when he's not the focal point of the shot. It was interesting to find this image in this set of screencaps, as it's one, I too never really appreciated until I saw it isolation like this.



Oct 19 2012, 1:03am

Post #9 of 14 (231 views)
Yes, I was surprised by this shot, also! [In reply to] Can't Post

I thought I had seen every image in the screencap library, and then here was this one, which looked brand new to me!

I like your choice of words for "focused Sam" and "hazy" Frodo -- visually, you are right, that's a neat way of showing that they are in different "spaces" in this scene. And it definitely conveys the sense that Sam is strong (even though his expression is one of high-alert!) and Frodo is vulnerable here. Cool!

Thanks for stopping by to comment, Loresilme. I'm glad to see you here again!


One Ringer
Tol Eressea

Oct 19 2012, 4:13am

Post #10 of 14 (217 views)
No no no [In reply to] Can't Post

I was speaking in a "what if" frame of mind. The shot is far too quick in reality to suggest what I can picture being done with this particular shot. Tongue

FOTR 10th Anniversary Music Video - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=33xJU3AIwsg

"You do not let your eyes see nor your ears hear, and that which is outside your daily life is not of account to you. Ah, it is the fault of our science that it wants to explain all; and if it explain not, then it says there is nothing to explain."

Tol Eressea

Oct 19 2012, 11:16pm

Post #11 of 14 (244 views)
really like this shot [In reply to] Can't Post

1. Great focus on Sam, then going to a hazy misty and overgrown background.

2. It'd be titled: On the marsh with a weird grey-skeletal dude Tongue

3. I personally think that Sam was never the 'odd man out'

4. I think he looks a bit too baby faced and without blemish

--I'm a victim of Bifurcation--

Join us over at Barliman's chat all day, any day!


Oct 22 2012, 3:22am

Post #12 of 14 (219 views)
the temptation of Sam [In reply to] Can't Post

The lighting etc does make it look like a painting!

A title might be "the temptation of Sam" as he has Gollum sitting on his shoulder, almost, whispering evil.

Frodo seems to be sitting isolated on a pile of rocks (though I know this is just the perspective) Him looking off screen also distances him from Sam.

Gollum really is Sam's burden to bear on this journey, as The Ring is Frodo's. Sam has to restrain his 'righteous' anger (I'm sure lots of people would want to give Gollum a swift kick in the back of the loin cloth) for the good of the quest.

Sam here looks a bit too hero-ish for me, a bit mannish, rather than hobbity. I think it's his face/expression- or maybe it's a slight unshaven look?

Gollum really is trying to split them up, visually, which represents how he tried to separate Sam from Frodo.

Hobbit firster, Book firster.

Have you explored all of TORN's forums?


Oct 31 2012, 1:52am

Post #13 of 14 (153 views)
Ha! Nice painting title! [In reply to] Can't Post

Uh, I wouldn't give up my day job to work in a museum though if I were you --Smile -- but you did get a good laugh out of me, thanks!



Oct 31 2012, 1:54am

Post #14 of 14 (219 views)
Gollum being Sam's burden... [In reply to] Can't Post

I like that thought -- well said. And very apt! I had not looked at it quite that way before -- Thanks!



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