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24052Re: [mythsoc] Fw: "The J.R.R. Tolkien Companion & Guide: Chronology: 1"

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  • David Bratman
    Jan 17, 2013
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      John Davis wrote:

      >Peter Jackson has gotten a lost of unjustified
      >criticism...Except for occasional moments where he used Tolkien's own
      >words,
      >Jackson's films shouldn't be thought of as the 'actual' representation of
      >the
      >secondary world, but as Jackson's own artistic responses to Tolkien's
      >books.
      >
      >Disclaimer: that was a joke. A joke, I tell
      >you. Insert smiley faces and multiple exclamation marks if necessary. It
      >absolutely wasn't intended to rekindle the tired old debate.


      If it wasn't meant to do so, you shouldn't have said it.

      There's one big difference above all. Swann's musical setting is just one
      among many. It's not being widely touted as the incarnation of every
      Tolkien fan's dream to hear his poetry set to music, acclaimed as
      rejuvenating a tired old book, etc etc.

      If Jackson's movie were just one of a dozen or more dramatic interpretations
      of Tolkien out in the marketplace, and none of them got any particular
      hoopla, I'd be delighted to offer my own particular opinion of its merits
      (which I do not consider to be zero), listen to others' opinions, and leave
      it at that, which is what we do with the Tolkien music. And also what we do
      with Tolkien fan fiction and movies: "The Hunt for Gollum" four years ago
      got a certain amount of abuse, but even those who liked it didn't try to
      defend it with the rapture that Jackson's defenders brought to it.

      I would be DELIGHTED if Jackson fans treated his work as an entirely
      separate work of art whose only connection to Tolkien's was that Jackson was
      artistically inspired by him. And, indeed, scholarly articles on Jackson
      that make no reference to Tolkien, or that compare the two the way they'd
      compare Tolkien to any other similar author, are making their appearance.

      The only objections that I'm making, and that I have made all along, are to
      the claim that Jackson's movies do fairly incarnate the book, and to the
      contradictory (but sometimes made by the same people) claim that if they
      don't, they were forced not to by commercial considerations. See my article
      in "Tolkien on Film" nearly a decade ago, which has those as its two
      headings. If I don't personally like the movies very much, I have
      absolutely no objection to other people liking them more.
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