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20521Re: [mythsoc] "The Hunt for Gollum" movie

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  • David Bratman
    May 14, 2009
      "Doug Kane" <dougkane@...> wrote:

      > I mostly agree with you, David. It is true that Gandalf doesn't say that
      > he
      > specifically can cure Gollum, but he does make it clear that humane
      > treatment of Gollum might help facillitate his finding a cure. He tells
      > Frodo that not only did they not kill Gollum, but that the Wood-elves
      > "treat
      > him with such kindness as they can find in their wise hearts." Later,
      > Legolas clarifies that this was partly because "Gandalf bade us hope still
      > for his cure." And, of course, Frodo takes Gandalf's words to him about
      > pitying Gollum to heart, and his kind treatment of Gollum due to his pity
      > for him was very much instrumental in Gollum's near-redemption (but for
      > Sam's failure to follow Frodo's lead in this, as Tolkien discusses in
      > Letter
      > 246). To me at least, all of this is contradicted at least in spirit by
      > Gandalf's flat statement in the "Hunt for Gollum" film that Gollum's
      > wretchedness was beyond their power to heal.

      It does, but I see it as more a contradiction in spirit than a change in the
      facts of the story. But this difference in our view of it is exceedingly
      minor, and rendered more perilous by the fact that neither of us remembers
      the film's exact wording.

      > It reminded me a little bit of
      > the argument between Frodo and Sam in the Jackson films in which it seems
      > to
      > be implied that Frodo was deluded in believing that he could help Gollum,
      > and that Sam was correct in saying that there was no hope of Gollum ever
      > finding any redemption. (As an aside, the fact that in the films Frodo's
      > desire to help Gollum was actually based on his concern for himself rather
      > than actual pity for Gollum misses the point that Tolkien was making, but
      > that is another issue altogether.)

      Just one, or two, examples of Jackson's massive Not Getting It, so massive
      as to render ludicrous any defense on the grounds that the deviations serve
      the plot of the story he's trying to tell. If he's trying to tell a story
      _that_ different from Tolkien's, it's a grave injury to pretend that it's
      based on Tolkien's in any way, and an insult supreme to be as devoutly
      copying of Tolkien as he was in more surface elements. When Tolkien had the
      trees really march to war, he was _trying_ to thumb his nose at Shakespeare.
      When Jackson thumbs his nose at Tolkien, and does so incompetently, he
      doesn't have that excuse.
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