I must say I was skeptical when I first heard my favorite novels were being made into films. I dreaded A-list tow headed actors and actresses over-dramatizing and/or faking their way through one of the greatest journeys ever. I feared they’d cast Tom Cruise as Aragorn, and Brad Pitt or some other overindulgent, overconfident “golden boy” as Legolas–a character I’ve loved since I first read the chapter about The Council of Elrond.
…but then I heard That Elijah Wood, a fine young child actor now grown up, was playing Frodo. I was intrigued. Sir Ian McKellen would be playing Gandalf–and I felt it would be refreshing to see him play such a good, likable character after watching him play Magnetto in X-Men (another performance of his I enjoyed.) The rest of the cast was either unknown to me at the time, or I hadn’t heard that they had been cast in it yet. Needless to say I was DYING to see this movie. Unfortunately I didn’t get to see the film when it first came out. In fact, I finally got to see it several months later. Definitely worth the wait. The cast, the script, the entire production was simply flawless.
Within the first scene the shire that I read about when I was a child, came to life… Middle earth where I longed to escape as a child had come to life, and was even more beautiful than I imagined. THe characters were almost exactly how I had pictured them, and the excitement, the drama, and everything else seemed very, very real.
My hat is off to Peter Jackson for his excellent job in bringing The Lord of the Rings to life, for those of us who grew up dreaming of Middle Earth. He did a wonderful job of (more or less) sticking to the original story, and bringing his vision of The Lord of The Rings to the big screen for all of us to enjoy.
Hat’s off to the cast too, who not only looks exactly like I imagined them…they act and speak, even walk just how I pictured them.
Some long-time Tolkien readers may scoff at scenes that were cut out, or rearranged…or Arwen taking the place of Glorfindel in the Flight to the Ford… Well some scenes don’t always translate well onto film,…I would have been bored watching Frodo wait a full ten years at Bagend waiting for Gandalf while the Sacksville Baggins’ raided and pilfered what Bilbo had left behind… The Tom Bombadill scenes would have been rather bland, and taken away from the central story… And I didn’t mind at all that Arwen was the one to save Frodo…that scene was so spectacular, F/X wise! I’m not going to nit pick about a female elf saving Frodo.
Regardless of such changes, the movie is spectacular! If you don’t like it…well then maybe fantasy movies, or classic literature brought to life is just not your thing. To each his own.
But it’s a must see for all Tolkien fans, all fantasy fans, and all who want to escape reality for approx 4 hours… and wander into Middle Earth.