During the Second Age of Middle-earth Rings of Power were granted to the lords of the Elves, the Dwarfs and Men. Amongst the shadows the Lord Sauron forged a single ring…one meant to bind and rule the rest of the world. As he wielded his power to rule over all of Middle-earth the armies of Men and Elves rose up to best the being. As all seemed lost the great Ring was cut from the finger of Sauron, reducing him to dust and spirit as he once was.
But the Ring itself was mischievous…passing from one owner to another until it was lost to the world of legend and myth…lurking in the shadows until which time it finds itself needed once again.
As we enter the Third Age of Middle-earth we pick up on an old companion, our dear Bilbo Baggins on his 111th birthday! As Bilbo plots his escape from the world of peace and quiet the Shire has to offer, one of his dearest friends, Gandalf the Grey, arrives with a gift of fireworks for the festivities that night. As the party wears on, Bilbo and his nephew, Frodo, evade relatives and have a generally good time, eventually culminating in a grand speech that is expected of the honoree. Of course, Bilbo, who has grown weary of life in the Shire…somehow disappears in the middle of the speech…
Gandalf follows the clever Hobbit, demanding the magical ring that Bilbo has had in his possession for many years should be left behind for his own safety…as magic can alter the state of the person it has a hold over…and dark magic even more so. And so, his beloved ring is passed to Frodo as Bilbo leaves on yet another grand adventure.
Frodo is now tasked with keeping the ring secret and safe…for what, neither he nor the great Gandalf seem to truly know.
As time passes it becomes apparent that this seemingly innocuous ring, one of mere small magics, one that can turn the wearer invisible is far more than what it seems. A precious Ring. The Ring. And it is with this knowledge that Gandalf returns just in the nick of time to prevent both Frodo and the Ring from being returned to its master.
In this moment Frodo is tasked with keeping the Ring safe. As Gandalf races to gain more answers, dear and sweet Frodo cuts across the world, joined by one of his dearest friends…the incredible Samwise Gamgee. The pair set off on what may turn out to be the greatest adventure of their lives.
-Genre: Epic Fantasy, Action/Adventure
-Creator: Peter Jackson
-Length: 178 minutes (theatrical)/208 minutes (extended)
-Rating: PG-13 (for moderate violence and gore, mild smoking and alcohol use, moderate frightening and intense scenes)
-Where to Watch: Hulu (with subscription), Amazon Prime Video (Buy/Rent), iTunes (Buy/Rent), DVD, Blue-Ray, or look for it at your local library
-Main Cast: Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler, Viggo Mortenson, Sean Astin, Cate Blanchett, John Rhys-Davis, Orlando Bloom, Christopher Lee
-Page of Reference in RP1/RP2: 62/
Review (contains spoilers):
I am going to start this review with something that seems to irritate other geeks…but I honestly never understood the hype of Lord of the Rings.
That being said I can appreciate the films and the books for the works of art that they are.
This film was beautifully composed. From the stunning sets full of forced perspectives, practical effects and cutting edge computer effects….there is much to appreciate even for those of us who don’t care for the story overall. The costumes are textured and sumptuous where needed and rustic and homey when not. This is honestly one of few epic fantasies that truly built a world from start to finish, telling all the little nuances and details of the tale through music, word and visual effects.
The battles are epic, and the story is enhanced, in my opinion, through the visuals of film.
This film was a wonderful start to the series. Visually compelling and composed of gorgeous details Peter Jackson truly did justice to the world created by JRR Tolkien.
This film is well thought through using composition and action to drive the story forward. There isn’t a lot of superfluous explanations (I’m looking at you book *insert eye roll*). Characters are introduced and their merits and places in the world are explained as needed…or through the action and story development. We as the audience must trust the people that come into the lives of the Hobbits, the same way they must. It adds a level of connection to their world and the circumstance that they find themselves in.
For as long as the films are they are a visual treat which does help in watching them. From what I can remember (as of writing this I haven’t completely reread the novels) they do a good job of following the storyline cutting only what seems to be unimportant to the story line such as Tom Bombadell. There is little extra in the world that Jackson builds…everything seems to have a place and a standing.
Overall an absolutely beautiful film and a great start to an epic trilogy.