10320Re: Gripes about LOTR films
- Nov 9, 2003--- In email@example.com, "David S. Bratman" <dbratman@e...>
>Certainly there arehave to
> parts of LOTR which could stand literary improvement, and you don't
> be a good writer yourself to say so; but I see this as part of acampaign,
> which I've noted here before ("Re: TTT review, startling statement",nobody
> 1/12/03), to claim that Jackson has improved a lousy old book that
> ever really liked much anyway.I feel this is, in part, a case where Jackson and Jackson's defenders
are apologizing (that's not "apologizing" as in "regret,"
that's "apologizing" as in "defending") for the wholesale departures
from Tolkien's text.
I also see 2 other factors at work here:
Factor 1: Contemporary screenwriting is very forumlaic. In
screenwriting courses, there is a very strict dramatic line that
students are encouraged to adhere to, and departures from that
formula are given as examples of "bad" (or in the text referred
to, "amateur") writing. It is interesting to note that those who are
making the comments ARE connected to the screenwriting community
rather than the literary community.
Factor 2: There are people who never were able to get through Lord of
the Rings (it certainly took me several tries, and I was an
enthusiast of The Hobbit!), and therefore have memories of the LotR
text being ponderous and boring. We may disagree (I certainly do),
but they're out there. I wouldn't be surprised if such people are
among those who say that they prefer Jackson's version (finding it
an "improvement" over Tolkien's text), and would agree with an
assessment that Tolkien's writing wasn't very good.
(Now, just to make clear where I'm coming from, although I found much
to enjoy in Jackson's movies, I do not find them preferable to
Tolkien's original text, and I do believe that Tolkien's LotR is a
literary masterpiece. I would characterize JRRT's text
Joan Marie Verba
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