Fellowship of the Ring viewing

Special Note: This viewing uses the “Extended Version” DVD

Another Friday night and Duckie’s away on business. Sucks to be him, because I am about to embark on my greatest project… an eventual Mutant Viewing of the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Bet you’re surprised it’s not Harry Potter, aren’t you?

Don’t worry. I’ll get there someday.

Okay — truth time. I wrote this introduction ages and ages ago, when I first did the Viewing. Amazingly, I can read it. I don’t own a laptop, so I hand write all my notes for these things. I’ll be curious to see how many of them I can read. Just for the record, I might not be a medical doctor, but I am a doctor. My handwriting reflects that fact. I can’t even remember when I did this, so bear with me.

Why am I just getting around to typing this up now? Probably because I’m procrastinating doing something else. Or because when they were asked what Mutant Reviewers could do to improve, so many applicants cited more Mutant Viewings, and heck, this was DONE. I just had to type it. I don’t know exactly why I’m doing it now. But regardless, here we go. Grab a beverage of your choice, some ice cream, and pop disc 1 in, because we have hours upon hours of viewing to get through!!!


1:55: If someone gives you a ring that grants you power over your people by some magical means, wouldn’t two minutes of thought tell you to be at least a little suspicious?

2:30: You know, we find out about the elves (who, for some reason that’s probably explained in the books I haven’t reread since 5th grade remain pretty autonomous), and we find out the humans become enslaved, but whatever happened to the drawves? And why does my spellchecker not recognize drawves? You’d think whoever programs spell checkers would be enough of a geek to make sure that was in there.

2:50: “Attack, Mr. Anderson!” Seriously, Hugo Weaving must be SO sick of hearing the words “Mr. Anderson” said in a dry voice.

Kill the human viruses!

3:30: Right here, Sauron looks like a pretty promising bad guy. Too bad he ends up being the least threatening bad guy I’ve ever seen. I mean, a giant eyeball? Please. Voldemort could kick Sauron’s disembodied butt any day. At least Voldemort got a body back.

5:32: 500 years of possession, loneliness, exile, and talking in rhyme would really require some serious therapy to overcome.

7:38: The Prologue is FINALLY over. When I say finally in all caps like that, I actually don’t mean that I find the Prologue boring. I don’t, actually. At all. But when the Prologue to a story is THAT long, you know you’d better have a really comfy seat and maybe a butt pad.

8:30: Hey – Bilbo’s office is more of a mess than mine! But his handwriting is far more legible, even I can admit that.

9:02: Is that Andy Serkis digging, there? I think it is — I know he appears as a hobbit in the Return of the King.

9:20: My notes say “yuck. Just yuck.” I suspect this was when the hobbit was picking his nose or something.

10:12: Okay, so was Sir Ian McKellan the best choice EVER for Gandalf or what? Honestly, he looks and plays it exactly right. This is how I’ve always pictured Gandalf.

14:00: Maybe it’s because I’m like 10 years older than the actor, but I’ve just never had a thing for Frodo – or really for any of the hobbits. My junior high girls (um, Liss, they’re now in senior high as you type this – oops) drooled over the hobbits and Legalos. Personally, I’m more for Aragorn, Faramir, or Boromir myself.

14:40: Cute little hobbitses. (I suspect this comment was about the little kids, not about the principle hobbits.)

16:49: It sucks to be tall, doesn’t it, Gandalf? Not that I’d know, mind you!

18:32: Why the dramatic music here? This is one of those things I don’t get – this sudden mood shift when Gandalf and Bilbo meet up again for the first time. Okay, so we are seeing the effects of the Ring and we’re foreshadowing and all that, and I do get that part, but… could we be a little more heavy handed please?

19:46: I’m so not going to speculate about other applications of Gandalf being able to blow smoke designs like that. Really. I’m not going there.

20:30: You’ve gotta admit, Sam’s stuttering at Rosie is very realistic.

20:54: That little girl is so cute. She really is.

21:22: Our first introduction to Merry and Pippin. As mentioned in my proper Return of the King review, it took me a good three movies to sort out which one was which. (Merry has the orange vest, right?)

22:36: Why aren’t our fireworks that cool?

Magneto under cover.

24:26: I’d just like to state for the record that when we had Geekfest, I was NOT this drunk at this point in the movie. The hobbit has me beat by a longshot.

24:44: Great line. I love drunken toasts. My favorite was after our wedding. My sis gave a lovely toast as a proper toast at dinner, and then proceeded to consume mass quantities of white zinfandel. In the bar afterwards, she wrestled the microphone away from the lead singer of the band playing and began a toast. When people didn’t stop talking, she shouted “hey all you drunken slobs in the back! Shut up and listen to me!” Hehe. I managed to work that line in my toast to her at her wedding. She was so appreciative.

26:50: How many close-ups does the ring get? Honestly. I mean, I know is almost a character, and it’s kind of the main impetus for the movie, but still!

28:04: You could make such a wonderful addiction analogy here with Bilbo and the ring. I’m sure people have already.

30:11: See? You even get shots from the ring’s point of view. There’s a lot of addiction analogies you could make with the ring.

31:51: I forget who won best supporting actor that year (looked it up – it was Jim Broadbent), but Ian McKellen really deserved it as well. (I was going to say over it, but man – Jim Broadbent did Iris, Moulin Rouge!, and Bridget Jones’s Diary that year. Can we say RANGE?) But McKellen just really brought Gandalf to life perfectly. Dead on.

32:00: Hey! Minis Tirath! Now that I’ve seen Return of the King, I know that!

33:20: Okay, what idiot lets a wizard smoke around a bunch of old parchment? Aren’t these people supposed to accumulate wisdom or something? Obviously, they don’t read what they gather.

34:10: His speech doesn’t match up with what’s written on the parchment.

35:28: Y’know, Rosie really is pretty. Sam has good taste.

37:54: The ring speech is so cool right here. The music is perfect.

38:15: Quite the rescue for a ring.

39:40: While Voldemort could kick Sauron’s butt, I think he read Lord of the Rings way too many times. Or maybe there’s only so many ways you can become an evil overlord.

The problem with the above comment is I have no idea what I was talking about. I mean, there’s certainly some major parallels between Voldemort and Sauron, like they offer disenfranchised people their rights or spoils for service, they have minions that wander around in ragged black robes, and they like followers that suck up to them, and they spent time disembodied. And come on, the One Ring is basically Sauron’s Horcrux, isn’t it? But I really don’t know what I meant specifically. This is why I should write these things up earlier.

41:31: The Inn of the Prancing Pony. Who comes up with names like that for their business?

42:30: A logical person must ask just what was Sam doing listening outside of Frodo’s house at that hour of the morning?

43:50: “You dragged me out here?” I have no idea what that was a reference to, except that it seemed appropriate at the time.

44:00: You know, there are so many great MST3K moments in these movies, but I’ve been relatively wisecrack-free for now. Maybe it’s my mood, maybe it’s the fact that the moments all come later, I don’t know. But it seems odd to me.

45:00: I so cannot read my writing for that comment, so I’ll take this moment to share a bit of trivia I found on IMDb. Bill the pony is a big feature in the novel, and I’ve heard people complain that he wasn’t really in the movie much. The reason for that is that apparently it was just too hard to get a horse up to the mountains. When you DO see Bill, a lot of times it’s two people dressed up together or something.

47:06: Gandalf the Grey, Saruman the White… these guys aren’t overly creative in their naming practices, are they? Either that or they’re very enamored with the game Clue.

47:36: Stoner!!!!

48:07: How can you not know this guy is evil? Between the nostrils, the fingernails, the scowl… honestly, he just radiates it.

48:37: Gandalf, how do you think he knows? Use your head!

49:32: He’s catching on! Oh wait – it took another 20 seconds. Which, given the fact that these guys were supposed to be friends for the last however many years, I suppose I can understand to an extent. But still.

50:07: Sauron and Sarumon. Tolkien, that was not one of your better naming choices.

50:39: It’s a sad year in movie battles (but pretty darn cool at the same time) when the best fight of the entire year is fought by two old guys. If I did my math right, Sir Ian McKellen was 62 when this movie was released, and Christopher Lee was 79.

Another fun little note on Christopher Lee: apparently he reads “The Lord of the Rings” once a year and is the only member of the cast and crew ever to have met J.R.R. Tolkien (who passed away in 1973). He was also the first person to be cast in the trilogy, partly because of his extensive knowledge of the books. He frequently visited the makeup department and often gave tips about the facial design of the monsters. And the guy has got a filmography of 225 films, as of October 2005. I need to do much more research and appreciation on this guy. I mean, he played Saruman and Count Dooku, sure. But he also was in Everquest II, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Corpse Bride, Police Academy IV, is a pioneer of horror, and voiced Death in some Terry Pratchett adaptations. How much more cult can you get?

52:30: Just for my reference, Pippin’s in the green, and Merry has the yellow vest.

53:06: Mushrooms, hobbit pipeweed, how many drugs do we have in this movie?

53:40: Our first good look at the Ring wraiths. (Heh. Anyone else read Foxtrot, and remember the one where Jason was very disappointed that they didn’t use real Ring wraiths to shoot this scene?) Anyway, if I was Alfonso Cuaron, I’d be really annoyed at Peter Jackson for snapping up the good Dementor outfits.

55:16: I gotta give old PJ full credit though – they are really creepy.

56:15: One of the things I love about the hobbits is their unquestioning loyalty towards each other. I mean, they’ve just seen this thing that is probably worse than their worst nightmares, they know it’s after Frodo, and they don’t even debate if they’re going to help him. They just jump right in. I love that sort of bond between friends, and it’s really a nice theme.

58:30: I still think that Prancing Pony is a really dumb name for an inn.

1:00:15: “It comes in pints?” Best line in the film.

1:00:29: Ohhh… Strider. Viggo Mortensen. How can anyone drool over hobbits and elves when he’s looking so good in this film (aside from the grime)? Incidentally, he also would have been absolutely perfect lookswise for Sirius Black. Yes indeed.

1:01:50: What are the odds of a ring actually landing on your finger like that?

No sexual imagery here, folks.

1:02:20: “I see you!”? Sauron really needs to brush up on his threatening phrases. Dude, pick up a copy of “Evil Overlording for Dummies.” There’s got to be a version out there somewhere!

1:03:05: Aragorn, you are in an Inn. WASH YOUR HAIR.

1:04:21: Hobbits killed, end of movie! Wow. That was short.

1:06:00: “He’s foul enough!” Merry agrees with me that Aragorn needs a bath.

1:06:48: Second breakfasts, elevensies, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, supper… this was Geekfest. Another entertaining tidbit: when Pippin is being hit with the apples after asking about second breakfast, it is Viggo Mortensen himself chucking the apple at his head. They had to shoot the scene 16 times to get it just right, and Billy Boyd says he believes Mortensen enjoyed himself immensely. Can you blame him?

1:07:38: I’ve got to admit, for all that I gripe about the state of Aragorn’s hair, it is realistic.

1:08:51: Saruman is definitely not a tree hugger or a member of ELF (or would it be MELF?). But he obviously supports the military. Definite Republican.

1:09:48: You’ve got to admit that’s a much more creative prison than just shoving Gandalf in the basement or something.

1:10:41: The sets for this are simply stunning. They really are. (I think we’re at Weathertop there.)

1:12:43: I find it entertaining that the main hero of a fantasy series is crap at fighting, and never really improves. Now granted, that’s really Tolkien’s entire premise. Frodo is his hero precisely because he’s not what people expect from a hero. They expect great deeds from someone like Aragorn, but long-lost kings that can swing swords and marry Elvish princesses aren’t the only heroes in the world. Frodo never really completes a truly heroic deed in the movie (maybe he does in the book): someone else kills the orcs, slays the spider, or rescues… well, not the princess, but him, but he’s the one that must resist the Ring’s power, and is really the only one who can. But it’s still kind of funny to watch him in a fight scene.

1:13:45: Yeah. Aragorn is cool.


Aragorn battling the Ring Wraiths at Weathertop was Viggo Mortensen’s very first day on set. It was also the first time that Mortensen had ever handled a sword. What makes this rather alarming is that he insisted on using a real steel sword. I’m sure it wasn’t sharp, but still. He also did all his own stunts, and kept his sword with him at all times, which led to some interesting encounters with the police.

1:16:30: Man, orcs sure are ugly. Apparently, the orcs that are seen as blacksmiths here were actually played by some of the people that were making the weapons for the movie.

1:17:00: This part (which I can only assume is the “birth” of the orc there) so grosses me out.

1:17:25: Okay, how does Saruman the White walk around his gory, muddy, tree-burning facility and actually stay Saruman the White? He must go through a ton of bleach.

1:18:00: The three trolls which were turned to stone in “The Hobbit” are in the background during the scene where Frodo, Sam, Merry, Pippin, and Strider/Aragorn are resting after fleeing from Weathertop/Amon Sul.

1:18:43: You know, I do have to agree in some ways with Justin about the Elf chickie. But the way she comes into the movie is kind of cool.

1:18:47: Duh. I know there’s ring wraiths behind me. Do you think I’m stupid?

1:21:28: You’ve got to admit, that’s pretty cool, watching the wraiths chase Arwen (just the way they’re spread out and everything). Until Frodo looks up and you see that gross crusty stuff on his face, anyway. Ick.

1:23:00: Honestly? Arwen does kick butt in this movie. Where is this part of her for the rest of the story? Oh yeah – in Eowyn’s character.

1:24:00: I have no patience for the Elvish dream stuff. So how DOES he get from the forest to Rivendale?

1:25:30: There can be only one! Oops. Wrong movie.

1:26:38: “Welcome to Rivendale… Mr. Anderson.” Seriously. That’s really where you expect him to say it. Is it possible to hear Hugo Weaving say that line and NOT add the Mr. Anderson?

David Bowie actually wanted to play the part of Elrond. I’m not quite sure how I feel about that, especially since flashbacks to Labyrinth and his costume there. Elrond in spandex. I’m not sure that’s what Tolkien had in mind.

Teenage girls, prepare to swoon.

1:29:00: That glen is absolutely beautiful, though.

1:30:02: How do you cross orcs with goblin men? Doesn’t that go against biology in the first place? Or are there female orcs? Any good fanfic writer can tell you that male pregnancy is just one of those places you don’t go. Ick.

1:30:55: Oh yeah. Boromir. The other Fellowship cutie (even if I do prefer his younger brother).

1:32:30: It’s funny. Isildur looks more like Boromir and Faramir than Aragorn.

Another IMDb tidbit: Sean Bean starred in a UK TV series as a soldier during the Napoleonic wars by the name of Richard Sharpe. He subsequently appeared in a series of commercials where he would allude to his earlier role, saying things like, “Sharpe idea”. In this movie he continues the joke: after touching the Sword of Elendil he says, “Still Sharpe.”

1:33:00: Hugo Weaving has very long eyes. Just saying.

1:35:17: He did wash his hair, at least. There’s something to be said for that. Her voice is really annoying in this, though.

1:36:00: “Do you remember when we first met?” Ugh. I really didn’t need this sap. Blech. Give me swords, darn it!

1:37:44: Boy, Elrond sounds like an angry parent here.

1:38:33: Can you imagine if someone in Congress started a proposal with seeing something in a dream? It would so not fly.

1:39:55: A little bitter there, Boromir?

1:40:28: Y’know, it’s amazing that Legolas and Boromir don’t kill each other right then and there. (Amusingly, Orlando Bloom originally auditioned to play Faramir. I like him better as Legolas though. Especially since it’s David Wenham as Faramir. We all know how I feel about Faramir.)

1:41:25: The red pill or the blue pill? Okay. I’ll stop making stupid Matrix jokes now.

1:42:00: Okay, the axe wasn’t a good idea. At all.

1:43:00: Time for an Aleve product placement, with all the people obviously having headaches.

1:43:22: See? That look right there should have earned Ian McKellen a painkiller. And an Oscar, but I really do like Jim Broadbent so I’ll stop griping about that.

1:44:52: I really love Sam’s theme as far as music goes. It’s such a fitting piece.

1:45:17: Come on, this is a total Kodak moment for a group photo!

Last Line: Honestly, Pippin gets all the best lines.


0:59: Can we go with a little more heavy-handed imagery?

1:40: Argh! Mithril! I’ll never forget the Forum discussion. For those of you that don’t remember it, it was about the physics of mithril or something like that – how it stopped the impact of a blow. It’s magic, people. That’s all you need to know. That, and it can be stained by root beer.

2:15: Did anyone else jump at this point? Bilbo just looked really freaky there.

2:55: I like his tiara – excuse me, crown. (I’ve definitely read the Very Secret Diaries one too many times.)

3:55: “Master Gandalf, is it left or right?” Why was that line cut from the original movie? It’s very cute and entertaining and utterly Frodo.

5:20: I know it’s the Gap of Rohan, but still…

6:54: Fly, my pretties! Fly!

7:20: Hmmm. Snow and barefoot hobbits. Sometimes, you’ve just gotta wonder about these guys. How much hobbitweed were they smoking, anyway?

7:54: Boromir really has a jewelry fetish, doesn’t he?

8:30: Could we have a little more tension there? And no, despite the fact I HAVE read the Very Secret Diaries, I don’t mean sexual.

9:25: Legolas mincing on the snow has got to really annoy everyone else in the party. I’d definitely be grumpy with him. Especially if he ever complained about being tired.

11:06: Y’know, this really is a good spot for a song in the Lord of the Rings musical. The hills are alive, with the sound of Saruman….

11:46: Doesn’t it seem unfair to make Frodo chose the path? I mean, clearly Gandalf knows about the Balrog, and yet he doesn’t exactly volunteer the information. Way to lay a guilt trip and shift responsibility to the little guy there, Gandalf.

13:17: If the runes and doors are invisible, how do the drawves know they’re there? How do you know if you’ve gotten your money’s worth? I know I’m not the first person to ask this; Terry Pratchett did it too in Witches Abroad. Is it like painting graffiti with Tide so it can only be seen under a black light?

13:48: I have got to stop reading Harry Potter. Every time I see a full moon, I expect a wolf to howl. I so need a life.

14:48: It’s kind of amusing that Gandalf can’t figure it out. It really is.

15:25: Too dangerous for a pony. So let’s send him off into the wild without any defenses whatsoever. Yeah. That’s a lot less dangerous, especially given what comes out of the lake in a few minutes.

16:48: Boy, does it take this crew a long time to catch on to that riddle!

17:05: Should send your Christmas cards a little more often, huh Gimli? The guy has been dead for how long?

17:36: Did Merry and Pippin tape an “attack me!” sign on Frodo’s back or something when he wasn’t looking? It would really explain a lot. I mean, it’s one thing with the Ring wraiths. They know what they’re looking for. But why does everything else go for our bite-sized hero? (Or did I just answer my own question?)

18:30: Well, so much for the Gap of Rohan, which would have been much easier, I think. Does it ever occur to anyone that Boromir might have a point every now and then?

20:09: Oh, so the drawves mine mithril. We just can’t get away from it, can we?

20:53: Look, I’m being really good and avoiding the slash jokes and everything, but could they have made it any harder to do? Honestly.

22:04: I remembered that Gollum looked different in the first movie, because it was an earlier conception of his design, but I’d forgotten just how different he looked. Wow.

23:30: Definitely one of the themes here. “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.” For all that it’s used a lot, I really like that theme, and I do think that’s such an eloquent expression of it, especially the way that McKellen delivers the line.

24:45: I’ve been trying to come up with a snarky remark, but you have to admit, that’s pretty cool. Duckie had suggested that we hang a map of Middle Earth over the TV for Geekfest. That would have been cool. That also tells me these notes almost a year old, possibly? I really don’t remember.

25:58: Drawves shouldn’t cry. It’s just wrong. Leave that to the elves.

26:27: Who writes that precisely in the middle of a war? Honestly. It’s like in the Holy Grail, where they’re debating about if the dying writer would carve “Aaaaargh” into the wall.

27:00: Oops. Gotta love those klutz moments.

28:17: For crying out loud, Boromir, how long does it take to close a door?

30:53: Legolas fangirls everywhere are cheering and sighing.

31:38: That has got the be the oldest “gag” in the movies. Hero hides behind the pillar, big stupid monster looks around for hero. Hero thinks he’s safe, turns the other way… and there’s big ugly stupid monster.

Did we interrupt you here?

32:20: Okay mithril devotees… there it is. THE STAB that started the great Mithril Debate of 1999 (I think it was 1999).

33:24: Hey, what happened to all the orcs, anyway?

34:22: Y’know, that mithril shirt is pretty girly looking.

34:42: Aha, they now all show up. Are these goblins or orcs or what? They’re really ugly, whatever they are. (Still makes me scratch my head about goblin/orc cross-breeding.)

36:00: It amazes me that no one has wet their pants yet. Maybe they just don’t show it.

36:56: For an old guy, Gandalf is pretty darn fast.

37:40: Jump! Not that would want to, but just jump already!

38:10: If the bridge- wait! The toss line! I love that bit!- sorry. If the bridge is going to fall over and supposedly kill our heroes, why waste so many arrows? Why not sit back and laugh and maybe toss a little popcorn at them? It’s not like any goblins manage to hit them anyway. As good shots as Stormtroopers, these guys.

39:40: Man, it’s really hard to keep the Very Secret Diary jokes out of my head right now.

40:15: Isn’t anyone in this crew afraid of heights? It’s not that uncommon of a fear. Really. (And in this situation, it’s not that unreasonable of one, either!)

40:34: I know I’ve said it constantly, but Ian McKellen is really cool. No wonder he showed up to the Oscars with a really hot guy who was like 40 years his junior. The guy can totally get arm candy.

41:37: You obviously don’t watch any movies, Gandalf. NEVER turn your back on an enemy.

42:30: Let’s go back and do it again!

43:00: This is pretty depressing. Really. Crying hobbitses. They really are sad.

43:55: Aragorn, you should be king and all that, but some things you just don’t get. Again, Boromir has a bit of a point. Or at least some compassion.

45:17: It’s never a good idea to boast in the movies. You’re always proved wrong in the next two seconds.

45:37: I have no idea what he just said, but it was obviously NOT polite.

45:55: Okay, I can see why this part was left out… although the conversation with Boromir probably should have been kept.

47:36: Does EVERYONE in this freaking trilogy announce loyalty in the same way?

48:50: Guys, I’ve got news for you – she’s not THAT pretty. Of course, for the past few weeks you’ve all only been staring at each other, so maybe there’s something to be said for that (and she’s not hideous, she’s just not that stunning), but still. Control the hormones. All of you. Seriously. I really hate it when authors make all the male characters drool over the same girl.

49:27: Well, you can’t see him up close, either, can you? Duh.

52:00: I really wish they hadn’t cut so much of the Gimli-Legolas dynamic. This bit really fleshes that out, and that overcoming-prejudices-to-become-friends thing is such a big part of Tolkien’s theme. Plus, they’re rather amusing.

51:28: CAN WE HAVE A DIFFERENT TONE OF VOICE, PLEASE? I mean, she speaks in the same tone giving the prologue, when she’s happy, when she’s sad… bet it doesn’t change when she asks her hubby there to pass the salad.

53:27: You’d think Aragorn could wash his hair here. I know Isildur … but… does Boromir get that Aragon’s king? I think so, but you almost wonder.

55:40: Oh goodie. Here comes the queen of monotone again.

57:38: Changed? Man, this chick annoys me. She really does.

58:00: Little Miss Sunshine, there. Would a few words of encouragement kill her?

58:51: I think Elijah Wood was getting tired of looking scared here. He just looks more embarrassed than anything else.

1:00:21: This is really elaborate. And for once, I will agree whole-heartedly with the Very Secret Diaries. Saruman the White was just NOT a good color choice.

It’s like a shooting gallery!

1:01:58: Swan boats. Are we in Boston?

1:02:46: This movie really needs more Merry and Pippin action. They liven things up. Yeah, I just don’t like Lothlorien, okay?

1:03:31: Wait – did he actually wash his hair? Whoohoo!

1:03:57: I think her crown’s on backwards. It looks it, anyway.

1:04:17: Rope. Great. Rope. Oh, good, he had the sense to say it to himself. But seriously. Rope. What does Galadrial think Sam is into? (Even if rope is very practical in these kinds of ventures.)

1:04:36: That is about as bad as Anakin. But it is cute here. At least he didn’t ask for her panties or something.

1:05:49: Boy, she makes that sound easy, doesn’t she?

1:06:26: The Star of whatever looks like a bottle of Cool Water perfume, to be honest.

1:08:06: Didn’t Sauron tell you boys not to run with scissors, much less swords?

1:10:30: Good for you, Boromir! Boromir does better in the extended edition. He really does. Both him and Faramir. I really wish PJ hadn’t cut so much of the stuff with the brothers – and not just because I think they’re really, really good looking.

1:11:15: I’ve always thought that was the coolest bit of scenery. Seriously.

Middle Earth Tours

1:13:30: How much time do the men in this movie spend braiding their hair, anyway? Aragorn can’t be bothered to wash his, and Legolas and Gimli are probably exchanging tips of French braiding versus herringbone.

1:14:07: I really think Sean Bean should have also been up for a Supporting Actor nomination. Just for this scene. He really did do an excellent job.

1:15:59: If I didn’t know this was filmed in New Zealand, I’d swear it was an old cross country trail I used to run in high school. I miss cross country.

1:16:32: I always feel like someone had too much fun with the filters in Photoshop when they do the Frodo’s-got-the-ring-on shots.

1:17:33: He so should have played Sirius Black. Really. Sorry, Gary Oldman. You might have acted Sirius perfectly, but Viggo has got the exact looks for it. Dead on.

1:18:45: How come he doesn’t hear that troop of orcs appearing? Are they really that quiet? Orcs don’t seem overly subtle.

1:19:55: Does it not occur to anyone to use their freaking cloaks?

1:20:24: That’s true bravery and guts. I can’t read my writing as to why, but just trust me on this. I do.

1:21:17: Sean Bean has got to… I really wish I could read this. It’s something about his death scene and getting shot a few times with the arrows. It really is a pretty cool death scene and all that, and he gets a great dying speech, which a lot of people don’t get. Down with glory, that’s for sure!

1:32:05: At least be taken out by the big guy.

1:24:00: How much does it take for this guy to die? Honestly?

1:24:28: But I really wish he didn’t have to. I do like Boromir as a character.

1:24:40: Best death scene in the trilogy.

1:25:30: Ew. I think Aragorn’s going to pass out there, and I don’t blame him. But it’s just a flesh wound!

1:27:13: Okay. I’ve hit my saturation point. How much longer does Boromir need to suffer? (It reminds me of Alan Rickman’s death scene in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.) And Legolas, could you look a little more concerned, please?

I…I am your father, Frodo.

1:28:53: It’s a good thing I didn’t try to count close ups of the ring. I’d be into triple digits by now.

1:30:27: You’ve got to love Sam’s logic.

1:31:31: Of all Sam’s impassioned speeches, this one is the best. Even if it is becoming a cliché. (Compare this scene with the ending of Half-Blood Prince, where Harry says he’s going off alone and Ron and Hermione insist they’re coming with him. Staple of fantasy, anyone?)

1:32:27: Burial by waterfall. Quick, easy, and efficient.

1:33:12: Look. Braids. Seriously – where do they get the time?

1:34:20: So biting my slashy little tongue. Biting… biting… biting….

Look. It’s not that I really think Sam and Frodo are a couple, okay? I don’t. I know that’s not the relationship Tolkien’s after. But could they have laid it on a little less thick in spots? I mean, come ON. Most of the men I know are just NOT that expressive in their emotions. They’re more the pat on the shoulder, “Dude, I’ve got your back” type, not long protestations of undying loyalty, even if that’s what the clap on the shoulder and the one sentence means. That’s what makes me giggle so much.

Hey – wait! That’s the end? What a lame spot for an ending. But WAIT! 27:08 left.

Good GRIEF!!!! Are they thanking ALL of New Zealand? That 27:08 is ALL CREDITS. According to IMDb, you could get your name in the special edition’s credits for $39.95. 1.) What did that money go to, and 2.) How many people did this? Does it explain exactly why there’s 27 minutes of credits?


  1. IIRC the dwarves (not drawves) were too inately stubborn to be corrupted by their rings. However, they did ratchet up their tendancies towards greed. Eventually, Sauron reclaimed the Dwarf rings, at least those that hadn’t been destroyed by dragons.

  2. Don’t think too hard about the crossing of Orcs and Goblins – especially when you consider that in the book, Orc is just the Elvish word for Goblin.

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