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Friday, 27 December, 2002, 17:12 GMT
The Two Towers: Your views
The waiting is over for Lord of the Rings fans as the second movie in director Peter Jackson's adaptation of the JRR Tolkien literary classic hits cinema screens worldwide.
The Two Towers takes over from where last year's debut movie The Fellowship of The Ring left off.
Many of the original cast return, including Elijah Wood, Sir Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler and Christopher Lee.
"The Two Towers bears some resemblance to other cinematic epic series such as Star Wars and Indiana Jones, but it seems free of a Hollywood sensibility," wrote the BBC's Tom Brook.
But what is your view?
Does The Two Towers live up to the first Lord of the Rings film? - or was Peter Jackson's initial triumph just a flash in the pan?
Here is a selection of BBC News Online users' comments.
This movie was incredible. Not only did director Peter Jackson stay very close to the original story line, but he turned it into exactly what I imagined it to look like. The special effects were awesome and the costume designs were done very well. I also enjoyed the little bits of comic relief throughout the film. The Battle at Helms Deep is one of the most incredible war sequences I have ever seen. Also, the music fits perfectly with what was happening on screen. Overall, this movie was excellent. Although I don't want to have to wait another year for the Return of the King to come out. I guess it's better than waiting three years for Star Wars!
What can I say! Fantastic! I have the books and if anyone else does - watch this film then look at the pictures in the book of the Two Towers. Some of the scenes in the film look as though they have come straight out of the book!! Check out the picture of Helms and the Treebeard!!
I have to say I have never been a devotee of the Rings. That aside I found this film to a good one. Unfortunately it's not a great one. It struggles to find a balance with the dark adult-oriented plot and innocent child like jokes that were probably very amusing when young fans first read the book. I also felt that too much of the plot was just a filler before the expected set piece battle at the end. There was just not enough development of the characters during this time.
Overall though given the size of the job I think Peter Jackson has done as good a job as could be expected. I look forward to the Return of the King next year to complete the story. It'll be interesting to see if Sam's eyes turn blue (as Gollums have) he is the only character I noticed that didn't have blue eyes!
Rory, N. Ireland
It was a privilege to sit through The Two Towers. Even as a die-hard Tolkien fan who can spot the 'changes', it has to be said, this is a flawless film.
Deeply Disappointed! They are just few words to say about this film. Though The Fellowship had some minor glitches, it was a well done adaptation of the book. But The Towers is just so disappointing. No problem with the special effects and the scenery (even if it really is darker than the original), but why, oh God, why did Peter Jackson have to change the storyline? There's no reason to do that. The whole book offers suspense enough, so why change all the parts. All year long I couldn't wait till yesterday. Now, I'm no longer looking forward to The Return of the King. Style, form and language: brilliant, Content: failed!
I'm a huge Peter Jackson fan, I genuinely believe he's the only director who could have put Lord of the Rings on the big screen, and was dedicated enough to go to a 12.01 am screening on a work night, but ...
Of course the cinematography is amazing, yes, the effects are superb - Gollum is astoundingly rendered both visually and from a character point of view - but still The Two Towers seems to suffer from the bane that is "the middle episode of a trilogy". Too much filler in the form of too many battles. Too many oddly static scenes in between: I was beginning to wonder if the hobbits' rear-ends and hands were fused onto Treebeard.
Throw in the same gags that were funny the first time but not this time (e.g. dwarf tossing), some very sterile shots of "scared" blond grubby faced kids, and a tedious amount of running around pretty scenery at the beginning.
I'm just glad that I wasn't picked by one of the numerous TV crews to give my thoughts at 3:45 am this morning. I would have found it even harder to be kind.
Overall, though, I feel the film is a bit too patchy. It was always going to be very difficult to keep three completely separate plot lines going but the fact that they don't converge (as far as I remember, Merry and Pippin meet back up with Aragorn et al by the end of the second book) adds an extra sense of shabby editing (plotwise that is, not technically). I mean, two of the main characters spend the bulk of the film on top of a talking, walking tree and the amazement of seeing Treebeard wears off much quicker than I thought it would.
There is hardly any Gandalf or Saruman and they being the two best actors in the film does not help the overall acting. Frodo and Sam are hit and miss; Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli (especially Legolas) are very formulaic (Orlando Bloom is so very wooden). Faramir is like a second rate Bormoir clone, and the whole siege of Osgiliath thing is redundant (though the Saving Private Ryan-esque feel is well achieved).
Effects wise, the whole thing is again very much a hit and miss. Gollum, as I said, is a triumph; as is Helm's Deep. I can't say the same about the Ents, some of which seem to be designed by a three-year-old, and the Warg attack, which should have stayed in Fellowship, is badly executed. The Wargs are awfully designed and animated.
Don't get me wrong, it is definitely a good film; it just isn't Fellowship of the Ring or Empire or Chamber of Secrets (you can now shoot me for that latest of inclusions).
The first thing I can say about it is what a great imagination Tolkien had and this is equalled by the vision of Peter Jackson, although my lasting impression is not what is in the film, but what has had to be cut out due to time constraints. Of course, this issue was addressed successfully in The Fellowship Special Extended DVD and only time will tell if this second instalment becomes "more whole" when it gets its turn for Special DVD treatment, but more time should have been spent with Frodo and Sam, and Merry, Pippin and Treebeard as these story strands, I thought, were underused.
Saying that, though (spoiler ahead!), a large part of The Two Towers book still remains to be seen on the screen (e.g. Shelob/Saruman, Pippin & the Palantir) and with that in mind we must look forward to one year hence, and The Return of the King.
Great film. But was it really necessary to deviate so severely from the book? I'm still getting over the shock.
Flannel panel. Frankly I have not sat through such a load of over- hyped ridiculous rubbish since watching Harry Potter. Sorry, but can we please stop pumping this sci-fi fantasy into cinemas and get back to real movie-making!!!!
I think opinion will be sharply divided. Non-Tolkien fans will enjoy the film, but they should now try to read the books and they will realise the extent to which the storyline has been changed. A lot of critical action that should be included has not been. Those who know the storyline well will, I suspect, be dismayed and very disappointed after a year of acute anticipation following the brillant first film.
It is understandable that much has to be missed out, but what spoiled the film for me was the additional material which never happened in the book. The Elves never came to Helm's Deep, Aragorn never fell off a cliff and nearly drowned and as for the nonsense with Frodo and Sam being forcibly taken to Osgiliath and Frodo offering the Ring to a Nazgul - what on earth was the director thinking of?
He certainly badly misunderstands the character of Faramir, who is the most noble character in the whole book, a contrast with his brother Boromir. This is a crucial part of the central underlying study of this work - i.e. the corrupting influence of power (the ring) and how each central character measures up to this test.The director has also mistakenly pandered to political correctness and radically changed the storyline in order to expand the role of Arwen.
On the bright side, Gollum was sensationally good.
Why do they have to ruin a mystical story whose chief appeal lies in atmosphere and mood by including all that stupid Hollywood "humour" based around the fact that dwarves are not very tall? Gimli is one of the greatest heroes of the story who kills 42 orcs in one night, yet we're supposed to laugh at the fact that he can't see over a wall.
I have to say I thought the Two Towers was an amazing film both technically and emotionally, I couldn't help but feel sorry for the tormented gollum which was the aim in the book, the battle scenes were top notch.
The point that some people on this message board are making about this not being true to he book is rubbish, Yes there were parts missing but in all reality if Peter Jackson was to make the films word for word the story would not convert to screen as well as it has done. If you watch the special edition dvd he clearly states this a number of times that in movies you have to stick to a basic story or the audience will lose track, and remember this isn't just for hard core Tolkien fans, this is so every one can enjoy the story.
I don't see this film as being what the book exactly is word for word, I see it as another facet of the world of Tolkien, another way to enjoy his vision and different way.
So to all you critics out there stop nit picking sit back relax and try to ENJOY the film instead of trying to find fault - trust me, it's worth it.
Well done Peter Jackson and well done the cast.
Cinematography was excellent, but in all other aspects I was deeply disappointed. There were too many changes from the original story line and at too important a level. For example, Faramir DID NOT decide to take the ring to Gondor, nor would they have won the battle of Helm's Deep without the Ents. Generally, wherever there was a departure from the book, it was detrimental. Furthermore, I found the "humour" deeply irritating - this is Tolkien, not Terry Pratchett.
The battle scenes were brilliant (the earlier critic who complained about there being too many - hello, the books are about a war, so there are going to be a lot of battles! If there were too many in this film, I wouldn't bother going to see the next one) and special effects incredible, and I have to reserve special praise for the portrayal of Gollum, which actually gave the character a great deal of depth rather than simply portraying him as a stereotypical villain.
I can't wait for Return Of The King now. Oh well, one more year to go!
What has Peter Jackson done? This was a massive disappointment, I am a huge fan of Fellowship, I thought the plot differences between film and book were necessary and helped the film. But The Two Towers has been hacked about, it lacks continuity, action jumps about from story to story. Scenes have been invented for a Hollywood blockbuster feel and perhaps the most unforgivable is the treatment of the character of Faramir.
I will still see the third film but I no longer look forward to it in the same way as after the first movie.
I thought Peter Jackson did a very good job, despite the fact it didn't follow the book exactly. There is no way to compare the second movie to the first because the first book establishes the plot and the second adds onto it. Over all, though, I thought it was excellent, and I know I'll be wasting a lot of my money on it.
Effects good, acting ok, but the fact that Christopher Lee did not get more screen time, as well as McKellen, made the film much poorer than it could have been. Also, two main character hobbits sit in a talking tree about 85% of their screen time. Boring.
I have to agree somewhat with many reviews. I don't believe it's automatically a better film than FOTR just because it's LOTR II.
The Frodo/Gollum strand is incredible and certainly Oscar-worthy.
The Merry/Pippin strand suffers from being cut from what we know the story in the book to be (hopefully Jackson will reinstate the balance on the DVD).
My main problem was with the Rohan strand. I just thought the story changes weren't necessary and the battles, whilst very impressive, just went on too long. Jackson is best at character driven story but I don't think there's enough of it here.
I expect though that Return Of The King will blow everything away. I think it's going to be the best film of the last 30 years! Anyone who knows the story, knows what's to come and can't wait to see it realised.
John Moyden, US
Brilliant, beautiful, bold. Yes, there are changes, yes, it's all about the middle. Who cares? See it three or four times. We will.
Sadly, The Two Towers fails to match its predecessor. It's too full of soppy moments of Hollywood propaganda about faith, hope, love and duty. Whereas the first film was one for the adults, this is one for the kids and painfully so. The moment when Legolas steps on a board and Disney-like, skates down the steps firing arrows, destroys any intention of remaining faithful to Tolkien's vision. Instead we are left with an americanised message of beating the odds. Shame on you Mr Jackson.
I'm going to have to see it at least a second time but my initial feeling is one of disappointment. I do not agree that PJ stuck very closely to the storyline at all. While I'm not a purist and didn't mind the "changes" in FOTR, some of the changes in TT I just cannot understand.
A few examples a) Theoden's company being attacked by wargs and especially the whole Aragorn falling into the river episode, b)The Ents deciding after the Entmoot not to get involved, c) the Elves deciding to turn up at Helm's Deep, d) all the Galadriel/Elrond and Elrond/Arwen scenes, and e), the whole Faramir scene (the worst "change" of all).
I suppose I can live with Faramir finding out about the ring through Gollum rather than Sam, but what on earth was all the rest about? Frogmarching Frodo and Sam to Osgiliath, Frodo's close "encounter" with the Nazgul? Also, Faramir comes across as a weaker version of his brother lusting for the ring which is the opposite of what he is in the book. I think the film would be less flawed if more time had been spent on the key "real" scenes a lot of which felt far too short. I await ROTK with some apprehension now.
Let's be fair, this film is awesome. It will continue to suffer from middle film syndrome; it has a lot of transitional material to cover. I admit there were certain things from the book that I thought, "Why isn't it in the film?" However, this film is not a screen-version of the book - it's Peter Jackson's interpretation. To be honest, the bits that were missing were fairly inconsequential. I was pleased that the scenes with Arwen and Aragorn did not go overboard on the slushy romance as I had expected.
OK, the Ents did look a bit ropey at times, but Gollum is the most amazing thing I have ever seen. After five minutes of amazement, I totally forgot that he is computer-generated. Andy Serkis and the animators should be awarded an Oscar for the way they portrayed Gollum's schizophrenia.
Aside from the fantastic directing, acting, plot and effects; the best thing is that there is another film to come.
An absoulute triumph! This film is astounding, Gollum is as Gandalf, exactly as all readers imagined over the years. It is more breathtaking and fantastical than the FOTR and the humour of Gimli is superb. Helm's Deep is truely one of the best movie scenes.
Fantastic film, thoroughly enjoyable - haven't read the book so can't comment on what's been left out .... but Treebeard's meeting with the rest of his kin must have been based on a W.R.U. committee meeting !!
I thought the film was exceptional, although I can understand why some people thought otherwise. I think there are two main reasons for the criticisms. Firstly, as a long-time fan of the books I'm convinced that to slavishly reproduce them in film would inevitably make a very dull movie indeed. It's inevitable that to reproduce the spirit of the book certain elements of the plotting would have to change. But I strongly believe these changes have only clarified the central story.
Secondly, The Two Towers can't really be thought of as a film in the traditional sense. It's not a stand-alone movie; it's the middle third of a ten-hour epic. To compare its structure to any normal movie is to totally miss the point: this is NOT Lord Of The Rings Part 2, it¿s still the same Lord Of The Rings we were all watching last year, and will all be watching in 2003.
Beyond all that I'd like to finish by saying that this is spectacular filmmaking of a type not seen since Lawrence of Arabia. It has depth, character, excitement, spectacle, and emotion, and I don't think I've ever seen a better designed or photographed film. And there's still another three hours to go!
Definitely disappointed, the first film is far superior to this one. I would have to say though that Gollum and the battle at Helms Deep were excellent but the three tier story left me underwhelmed and those walking, talking trees were awful. I haven't read the books but didn't Tolkien think the trees were a bit laughable?
Natalie Watson, England
Excellent adaptation, correctly capturing the spirit of the story. It is the hardest part of the trilogy to tell, with neither beginning or end, and a temptation to create just a preview of things to come.
The vital story elements are there and done extremely well. My only real issue is with the narrative halfway through, this might have been better placed at the beginning to set the scene again rather than as an interuption in the middle.
Once again I left the cinema wishing to see the Return of the King.
I've just returned from watching Two Towers this evening. Yes all the special effects (Ents, Gollum, battle scenes etc) are great but the film takes far too many liberties with the book for anybody who loved the original to be overly impressed. I could forgive the first film for its somewhat minor indiscretions but this film goes beyond a joke. I feel only an intense disappointment in a film of which I had such high expectations.
With all the additional and superfluous non-Tolkien dialogue and scenes and the pick-and-mix way in which the book has been tampered with it felt almost like watching a different story at times but with LOTR characters thrown in.
Warg attack...Aragorn separated from the others and going on a little jaunt...Eomer and his men going missing...an army of Elves turning up (I assume this is a mis-timed reference to Elrond's sons and the Dunedin turning up before Aragorn takes the Paths of the Dead ?)...Ents deciding to do nothing at the Entmoot...Arwen leaving for the Grey Havens... everybody else and their dog heading for Helm's Deep (nothing like sending your women and children to the place you're choosing to do battle for safety is there !)
Eomer mysteriously somehow destroying the Orc army (10000+) with his rebel band of a couple of hundred riders at Helm's Deep instead of the Huorns after finally appearing...Faramir not deciding to let Frodo and Sam leave for Mordor...the pointless confrontation with the Nazgul in Osgiliath (hello - just how is Sauron supposed to be surprised now ?!!) etc etc...and I've not even started on all the minor differences!
It is only now that I begin to understand the reluctance of the Tolkien estate to the films. It takes a case of supreme arrogance to think that you can do better than the author of a book who spent a large chunk of his life writing and revising the story and go ahead and invent scenes and dialogue and alter events in the manner in which Peter Jackson has chosen to do.
I'm sure anybody who has not read (or remembered) the books will enjoy the films and go away thinking they have seen JRR Tolkien's The Lord of The Rings but I wanted to see the book on the big screen - not an interpretation of it. The storyline in the book has been more than good enough for millions of readers over the years - I only wish it had so proved for Peter Jackson.
If you want to find the real Lord Of The Rings take my advice and go read the book - you'll be glad you did. I continue to live in hope that one day someone will actually deliver the film Tolkien himself would have wanted.
PS. It was also a mistake not to have a short recap at the beginning of the film to make it more accessible to those unfamiliar with the books or those who did not see the first film.
Nonetheless - as a book lover - I think everything about the film worked wonderfully. Critics seem to dislike diversions from their own preconceived notions of what was "important" in the book.
Let it wash over you - I prefer the movies to the book now!
Purists? - if you want the book - read the book!
While sharing some of the reservations of the other reviewers re. Ents and Wargs, this film is a towering achievement. The script is an intelligent reading of Tolkien's work exploring the themes of grief and loss refusing to give way to despair. This is a fallen world indeed but Jackson keeps hope alive taking the audience on an emotional journey while delivering adrenaline charged action sequences that are effects ¿buoyed¿ rather than ¿laden.¿
I just got back from a 4 0'clock screening. The place was packed and at the end of the film it got a round of applause. The film was amazing - Gollum puts Yoda and Jar Jar Binks in the shade and Treebeards first appearance is a real surprise. People were laughing, gasping and screaming it was a great movie and hopefiully Peter Jackson will get the Oscar he should have won last year for his direction. Even though the special effects were epic in scale they don't dwarf the actors and that truly is good storytelling.
The entire film was fantastic. The effects were great, the scenery was beautiful and what Tolkien left out - ie images of the Wargs - Peter Jackson envisaged really well. It certainly lived up to the first film.
Breathtaking magnificence! This material would have defeated a less talented and less determined director, so hats off to Peter Jackson. One can only imagine how spectacular the third film will be.
I think it's fantastic! The depth of the film is just awe-inspiring, although naturally there were parts I wasn't so sure of. Helm's Deep was brilliant and I think the Aragorn/Legolas/Gimli triangle works very well. Frodo and Sam's journey was very well acted and Gollum looks just right. I have to admit that I didn't like the Ents - they were too thin and short and some of the acting in that section was rather dodgy. Overall it is a very worthy successor to the Fellowship - how will we wait for a whole year more?
There must be at least another 30-40 minutes of film to see - so can't wait for the DVD. Plot involving Arwen is the weakest part of the film, though she handles the material superbly. It is shot through with loving detail, colourful splendour, and a meticulous eye for detail I have never seen before. The biggest disappointment is the rushed narrative in the first act, the film isn't allowed to grow into the story - therefore the script at times feels a little strained. These are minor quibbles.
I loved treebeard even if he is only in short scenes, and look forward to the confrontation with Saruman in ROTK. I'm happy to see things carried over to the last film from the middle book as ROTK is the most difficult book to read and hence film.
Gollum is superb - it is the best CG character EVER created and Andy Serkis should, if the Academy has any guts, be Oscar nominated for supporting actor.
Equally good was Eomer and Eowyn who both brought a lot of pathos to supporting roles as did Brad Dourif. The three companions held together very well and I think came more into their own as the film went on.
Finally the siege is superbly chreographed if a tad rushed, the surprise of the film was indeed the arrival of the elves - but a welcome one nonetheless. Definitely the best action adventure film I've ever seen and I've seen a few. Off to see it again in a couple of days - can't wait!
Great Movie...I loved the books and the movies are gravy on the top. Both the FOTR and TTT are true to the spirit of the books and Jackson beautifully recreates their essence. To the Tolkien purists in this board who are ripping the changes, I have one thing to say: Get a life...
Tragically disappointing. The first film was so great and by comparison this is a mess. It has grossly and needlessly mangled the story, and changed events and characters. There are some spectacular battle scenes and some great characters - Gollum for example is perfect. However this is one I won't buy on DVD and I'm no longer looking forward to part three. So sad.
Now we must wait for 365 days! It seems more than a whole life!!! But we'll wait, because the story deserves it.
Great movie. I think the battle scenes were amazing and the film despite being three hours long kept me inthrawed. I did not look at my watch once.
The film was fantastic. True, there were diversions from the book, but I like surprises. & for those nerds who bleat about the changes - make a film yourself! It was a monumental piece of work and awards should go to all those involved.
I just saw the movie and was wondering if Jackson had actually read the story in the past 10 years or so. He added things that didn't happen and ignored things that did happen. Does he not remember that Faramir was a very noble man and not someone you couldn't trust? Did he forget that Treebeard called for the war and that he wasn't tricked into it by Merry and Pippin? Does he not recall the pride and nobility of the Dwarf race? Could he forget the darkness at the Dead Marshes? Where was the very important meeting of Gandalf and Saurumon? Had he forgotton how Gandalf reappeared? Jackson should have spent more of his time in allowing the audience to understand and feel the characters. To understand what their fears and nightmares were all about. Jackson makes the mistake of focussing on the battle instead of on the true story.
To all the pedantic grizzlers out there I say - perhaps you would have preferred a nine part version served up by Disney or Lucas as "Ring Wars" 1 to 9 (with a number of 'flavour of the month' stars and starlets playing ducks and drakes with the characters) between now and 2008.
Just be thankful that a guy with fresh passionate vision and awesome filmaking skills took a book that many would say is unfilmable and has made the whole world sit up and take notice. Shooting the whole thing at once was a Herculean task but the overall evenness of vision and product is the payoff. Nothing is ever perfect but Peter Jackson has come pretty close so far.
The first film didn't stick to the story that was in the book because it missed out most of the story or changed the storyline and the second film doesn't either. But overall if you haven't read the book it was an excellent film
Many people lose sight of what made Tolkien's work exceptional in the first place - that is the complete works of the Lord of Rings. Only until all three films have been released can we then appreciate the magnitude of Jackson's work. Don't forget, we are talking about the most significant contribution to cinema the twenty-first century has yet seen both in terms of scope and size - just in much the same way that Tolkien contributed to the novel format in the twentieth century. We also forget that Jackson does have a disclaimer to all of the negative comments above - that his work is 'based' on Tolkien's work and not intended as a direct cinematographic conversion. The fact that Shelob's Lair was missing from The Two Towers is a clear enough indicator that Jackson hasn't even finished with the second book.
How exactly could you film these ideas WITHOUT making plot changes ?
It's a great movie. Accept it.
I agree with Pete, how on earth could anyone make a film of everything in Tolkien's book/s? Peter Jackson has done a fantastic job, with far more integrity than some others would have. It's a while ago that I read the books, so it didn't upset me too much that some things had changed, as I couldn't recall exactly what happened in the book. (Perhaps the best way to see it!) However, there were plenty of scenes where I felt a frisson of familiarity, brought on by Jackson having realised the scene as near to how I imagined it as possible. I was totally transported, and I am looking forward to the third film, which is going to be stunning. Don't forget - this isn't LOTR part two, it's the middle of an epic adventure.
I just took in The Two Towers a second time in the opening weekend. The encore was even more enjoyable. Wow! I never envisioned that someone could do justice to Tolkien's landmark work of fantasy on the big screen. Peter Jackson has exceeded my wildest expectations of what movie making is all about. The casting, special effects, cinematography, costumes, acting, and music could not have been improved upon. A monumental work that will be enjoyed for countless generations to come!
It is, in a word, superb.
I've seen it twice and will likely see it in the theater several more times.
I'm not crazy about the plot changes, but I can see the necessity.
Good, spellbinding in parts but deeply disappointing in others.
Didn't I hear Jackson say in an interview, after the FOTR, that he had kept to the original storyline for the sake of the die hard Tolkien fans? Humbug!! This is an adaptation designed for the American audience.
I'm not sure why some people's comments here are so fussy. I'd like to see them try and fit the full Two Towers story into 3 hours of film. There's no way it can be done, so it is no wonder that parts have been left out. I'm a Tolkein fan and have no problem with the fact that the film doesn't follow the book word for word. The films have been amazing so far and I can't wait for the last instalment of the trilogy. The special effects, scenery and acting are a wonderful piece of cinematography, and deserve all the praise they get, and none of the critisism. Well done Peter Jackson and the team.
I can't believe there are so many whingy whiners out there who are complaining about this film! Two Towers is just the second part of a trilogy, and I am convinced that when all three films are finally put together they will be seen as one of the all time great acheivements of cinema, every bit as important as Citizen Kane, Gone With The Wind etc. etc. This movie is an awesome acheivement, and Peter Jackson is a true visionary who has fashioned his own unique work of cinematic art out of a book that most people thought was unfilmable, and proved to be so in the past-remember Ralph Bakshi anyone? So what if PJ has taken liberties with the plot. Lets face it, Tolkien's stuff is amongst the most pretentious twaddle ever written, all those crappy Elvish songs for exampleand Tom Bombadil la-laing around the forest.Oh please! Don't get me wrong, I loved the books, and think they are truly incredible literary acheivement, but to film them as they were written would be truly truly diabolical!! LOTR and TT must be seen in context, a fantastic body of work by a truly dedicated and gifted master of his art. Congratulations Peter, you have restored my desire to go to the cinema, by reinventing the epic. Harry Potter? Pah!!
The tragedy of the Jackson LOTR is that it was made by a director who has nothing other than a B-movie sensibility. In principle, it's reasonable to change and telescope scenes from the book - if they make cinematic sense. Unfortunately, Jackson and his script-orcs seem to fail on every level. The way in which pointless additions (Aragorn falling off the cliff etc) clutter up a dynamic storyline, as well as massive misreading (when did Faramir haul Frodo and Sam off to Osgiliath?) simply drag down a great work of art, and transform Tolkien into rehashed, second-rate Spielberg. I hope that some day a great director will take on LOTR - until then, don't waste your time or money on this badly-organised and crudely directed piece of B-movie schlock. If you doubt my take on this - ask yourself what Kurosawa could have made of LOTR.
The film supersedes the book. If Tolkien's work had been properly edited at the time rather than having been just plonked into print, the taut, more exciting Peter Jackson treatment might have been the result. Before I am lynched by legions of self-appointed Guardians of the Tolkien flame who treat the Lord of the Rings as a holy relic rather than a ripping yarn, I should say that I am a professional editor and published writer; I have read most of what Tolkien ever wrote (mostly many times over); and grew up steeped in the same kind of mythology that inspired Tolkien. I bow to very few in my knowledge of Tolkien and his works. And any student of literature will know that no great work is ever finished; indeed, a good story, especially a good myth, can be told and re-told in many ways without injury to the story. Tolkien knew this full well, having re-told many of his own stories in various forms over the years. If I have a criticism of the film, it is its frantic struggle w! ith the broken structure of the Two Towers -- but such are the limitations of the material. And if any Tolkien nerd wants to do battle -- bring them on!!
The film's biggest failing was its Dr Frankenstein treatment of the plot, notably the Elves at Helm's Deep (although super impressive), Aragorn's pointless jaunt, and the Osgiliath/Faramir/Frodo/Nazgul part. He's done the opposite to what was successful in FOTR. I understand that Jackson had to make some plot changes and omit parts for the film's sake, but if the narrative is going to suffer like this, why try to condense it into three hours a go, as a trilogy, or even undertake the task if he's not up to it? But then Jackson's realising his own vision and interpretation, not making an official adaptation...
I would rather Peter Jackson sway a little from the written text, than for none of us to not have the chance to see some of Tolkien's work on the Big screen. Please enjoy it for what it is. Do not sit in the cinema with your book being a critic to every paragraph.
I was aghast at the outrageous rewriting of the script by Peter Jackson in Two Towers. The dignity of many of the main characters was utterly stripped away. If Mr. Jackson wanted to create a new film he could have done it. Why did he have to be a parasite on JRR Tolkien's back?
I have just been to see The Two Towers and I am still trying to get over it. I cannot understand the wisdom in making script changes that takes the essence away from the story. Whole characters have been changed and in some instances, some characters have been ignored completely. For instance, in the original book, it is Erkenbrand who appears with Gandalf at Helm's deep while Eomer is fighting with Aragorn all along. Where the heck is Erkenbrand? And what happened to the Huorns that follow the Orcs all the way from Isengard. And it is entirely false to say that Treebeard made up his mind at a moments notice when initially making the point(in a jestful way) that ents take their time at the entmoot. And what is with all the drama interspersed with the battle of Helm's deep with the mother being separated from her children. While the director has chosen to ignore a major part of the two towers( The voice of saruman, The palantir etc.,) he has enough drama to last an entire sea! son of " The Bold and the Beautiful". Peter Jackson has shamed the original story by selling out to Hollywood's corny rhetoric.
Well, I like part II, but it does not rate up there with The Fellowship of the Rings. I was upset that the characters of Aragon and Aarven split up and I don't like the new love interest that they have for Aragon. It could be because the female character is just so plain looking compared to the elfish character. The Twin Towers did not have enough action for me and it was kind of drawn out.
Incredible, I have never seen such a powerful film such as this in many years. I see a different movie in the theater every weekend. The Two Towers blew all of them out of the way. Stunning graphics and excellent acting, for people who have watched the FOTR but have not read the book The Two Towers sums up the reading most clearly and thoroughly in the movie.
Overall, a very promising effort that has rewarded both Rings aficionados and new fans alike. Yes, there are points in the film that have been included and/or restructured, but in truth the exact locations of each character as they cross Rohan, for example (and in what order) are not so important; getting bogged down in this level of narrative would slow the pace of the film down to snails' pace.
There will never be a better movie than "The Lord of the Rings". " The Fellowship..." was great (I especially liked extended DVD) but
"Two Towers" will be even better, because it's more exciting. The TTT premiere in Serbia is on Saturday.I've already bought yhe tickets for the first show...
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