The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring 1.0 stars

Movie poster


Dr. Tolkien's home-cooked myth. First course only. All manner of visual invention, photographic trickery, computer magic, etc., cannot alter what is in essence an overblown bedtime story. They can only blow it up bigger. And the burden of it is more or less tripled by the knowledge that these three hours are just a third of it. Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Ian Holm, Viggo Mortensen, Sean Astin, Liv Tyler, Cate Blanchett; directed by Peter Jackson.

Duncan Shepherd

Length: 3 hours, 45 minutes

Rated: PG-13

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The Lord of the Rings, an overblown bedtime story? Sure, vast (I have read it and The Hobbit through once, around age 40), but overblown? That, and calling this series a burden, suggests the reviewer's mind was shut tight. I count on reviewers for thoughtful analysis; I can get prejudiced responses from any teenager or codger. I expect better.

Guillermo Del Toro was reportedly hand picked to shoot the LOTR prequel The Hobbit, in two separate film installments. I was more excited to hear this than I was about the big LOTR trilogy itself, as Del Toro is the brilliant madman behind Pan's Labyrinth, the Devil's Backbone, and the Hellboy movies.

However, today comes news that Del Toro is off the Hobbit - I'd be hard pressed to think of anyone else capable of pulling it off, and I fear we may end up with Sam Raimi (since he's off Spidey 4) or =gasp= Tim Burton, whose every turd is considered gilt with gold after the surprising success of Alice in Wonderland ---

Yes, I read that as well. The problem is that the project was never gree-lighted (apparently MGM is having major financial issues), and since MGM owns the majority of the rights, The Hobbit may never be born after all.

I'm frankly amazed that the old Rankin Bass TV movie of The Hobbit hasn't been rereleased to theaters - it's actually a very good summation of what was essentially an entry-level kid's book to begin with. The whole tone of the Hobbit storyline is so different from LOTR that it would probably be a mistake to make a film version that emulates the grim battle-centric Hollywood trilogy.

Y'know who SHOULD be doing the Hobbit theatrical - the Jim Henson house. They're putting far too many eggs in their one remaining basket by dedicating so much in-house (and overseas) manpower and $$$ toward their upcoming CGI/muppet Dark Crystal sequel, an idea that makes me wince every time I think on it (which I try not to do too often).

That's an interesting idea Jay. And, probably, a good one. In which case Hollywood will likely ignore it ;)

The Hobbit was definitely either ahead of its time or behind it. Speculative fiction was quite limited back then, I still have a copy here somewhere but I wouldn't have had it showing back when I was in high school, it was considered very nerdy. However, I was free to showcase my Bradbury and Asimov quite freely. This is what happens.

Hey, I bet I can strike terror into both your nerdboy hearts. Two words: Baz Luhrmann. :)

(I happen to think HIS every turd is gilt with gold, so I'd be all for it.)

Imagine. HOBBIT: The Musical.

Sadly, the best thing about the LOTR series would be missing, which is...



just swooping in a moment...

...and the Viggo Mortensen (wee, I spelled it right without checking first!) masturbation video appears at the Reader for the twentieth time this year ;)

"Speculative fiction was quite limited back then"

Teach me, refried. Not sure whatcha mean by this.

"...and the Viggo Mortensen (wee, I spelled it right without checking first!) masturbation video appears at the Reader for the twentieth time this year ;)"


Heehee. Hey, I saw an opportunity to post it in one of Duncan's dealios, and I took it.

Still trying to figure out how to work it into Jerry Schad's "Outdoors San Diego" column. I don't think Bauder's been hit yet, either. I'm sure he'll dig it big time.

It's kinda like graffiti, but better. Don't you agree?


It's cheestastic!! Oh, yes, Don's column for sure!!

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