I made a PROMISE

I was going to have an actual thing to share tonight (yes, a thing), but I want to try and illustrate the thing at least in a small way, and tonight is too late. I’m tired. I’d say goodness knows why, except daylight savings time started on Sunday and I’m still reeling like I’ve got major jet-lag instead of an hour less sleep in the morning. Still, it is nice to see the sun’s face a little longer in the evenings, so I’ll leave my complaining at that.

In other news, I’m reading The Lord of the Rings before I go to bed each night, and having an enormous amount of fun comparing it with the movies and trying to recall the original way I imagined everything. Regardless, the movies are fantastic adaptations, though I can’t help but shake my head a little over some of my favorite bits that were lost in the making. Biggest complaint: they dumbed down and eviled up my two favorite characters–Pippin and Faramir, respectively. Pippin, for the record, was young and occasionally foolish by reckless choice, but actually quite intelligent; Faramir was the best and noblest of the two brothers without hesitation when he didn’t have a Hollywood writer insisting that Gollum needed a reason to go bad after a brief respite of okay behavior, as though the evil in the heart of man needs a reason to be. But they simultaneously deserve a hearty round of applause for all the favorite character pieces that did make the cut–like Gimli and Legolas competing over their corpse tallies. However, there is one very clear example of something I think the movie did better: the end of the Fellowship of the Ring. As Aragorn closes Frodo’s proffered hand and quietly says, “I would have followed you to the end.”

(And Sam bawling the hobbit out only a few short minutes later: “I made a promise, Mr. Frodo!”)

The reason it remains such a great adaptation despite the many–and in many a case deep–cuts is because they captured the feel of the novel, if not every excruciating rock that lined the road into Mordor (it took me three read-throughs to start appreciating the scenery; the first two times I actually skimmed the landscape shots because there’s only so much of that I can take). And most of the changes had to be made because of the limitations of the media. Time is a constraint a novel isn’t bound too, and movies are more rigid in their structure due to audience expectation. But that’s a topic for another day. I’m to bed to finish reading The Two Towers.

P.S. Wrote every day I was supposed to, with not enough to show for it. This challenge has been good for my habits, but I think I need to add another layer: an amount goal/expectation. “Two rotten, stinking pages,” was one suggestion I read somewhere recently. Thanks, Mom.

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2 Responses to I made a PROMISE

  1. Your Local Friendly IT Guy says:

    I would agree. I think the movie does put a nicer bow on the book 1-2 transition. And I enjoy both for different reasons (but all brought together by the fact that they’re still ultimately the same story, which is awesome).

    • A.L. Schultz says:

      I loved what they did with Boromir too. Reading the book now I can see threads of the good man he could be, but the movies put a really nice emphasis on it, having him training and horsing around with the hobbits–you can tell he just gets a kick out of these peaceful folk, and he totally would’ve been friends with Frodo too if the ring hadn’t stood between them.

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