Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

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

Expand Messages
  • Doug Kane
    I too am a fan of the Jackson films, at least as compared to David. Of course, that is damning with faint praise. ; ) Alana, I ll wait a couple of days and
    Message 1 of 13 , May 5, 2009
    • 0 Attachment
      I too am a fan of the Jackson films, at least as compared to David. Of course, that is damning with faint praise. ; )

      Alana, I'll wait a couple of days and then post some further thoughts if no one states that that they mind. The particular point that I was referring to comes almost at the very end, and while I doubt that it would seriously ruin anyone's viewing experiences, I have seen some awfully strong reactions to what I thought was fairly innocuous spoilers before.

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Jason Fisher
      To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Tuesday, May 05, 2009 3:04 PM
      Subject: [mythsoc] Re: "The Hunt for Gollum" movie





      All I'll say for now is I appreciated the effort (to a point), but honestly, I found it boring. And not quite as lush and impressive as advance word had led me to expect. And I say this as a fan of the Peter Jackson films, FWIW.

      Jason

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Alana Joli Abbott
      Definitely, waiting a few days seems like a good idea. I m not anti-spoiler myself, but I don t want to step on anyone s spoiler-free toes! ;) -Alana ... --
      Message 2 of 13 , May 5, 2009
      • 0 Attachment
        Definitely, waiting a few days seems like a good idea. I'm not anti-spoiler
        myself, but I don't want to step on anyone's spoiler-free toes! ;)

        -Alana

        On Tue, May 5, 2009 at 6:30 PM, Doug Kane <dougkane@...>wrote:

        > Alana, I'll wait a couple of days and then post some further thoughts if
        > no one states that that they mind. The particular point that I was referring
        > to comes almost at the very end, and while I doubt that it would seriously
        > ruin anyone's viewing experiences, I have seen some awfully strong reactions
        > to what I thought was fairly innocuous spoilers before.
        >
        > .
        >
        >
        >



        --
        Alana Joli Abbott, Freelance Writer and Editor (
        http://www.virgilandbeatrice.com)
        Author of "Nomi's Wish" (
        http://coyotewildmag.com/2008/august/abbott_nomis_wish.html), featured in
        Coyote Wild Magazine
        Contributor to Serenity Adventures: http://tinyurl.com/serenity-adventures
        Contributor to Ransom: The Anthology: http://tinyurl.com/ransombook
        --
        For updates on my writings, join my mailing list at
        http://groups.google.com/group/alanajoliabbottfans


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • John D Rateliff
        I think it s telling that they went to great lengths to reproduce the look of the Peter Jackson films, to the extent of casting actors based on their
        Message 3 of 13 , May 5, 2009
        • 0 Attachment
          I think it's telling that they went to great lengths to reproduce the
          look of the Peter Jackson films, to the extent of casting actors
          based on their resemblance to Jackson's cast. I'm reminded of The
          Mamas and the Papas, who at one point fired Michelle Phillips and
          replaced her with a woman who looked like her, not one who sounded
          like her.

          I think these people spent an enormous amount of time and effort
          producing a 34-minute piece of fan-fiction; if it were in print
          rather than on film it wouldn't stand out from among thousands of
          other examples.

          An amazing piece of mimicry, though.

          __JDR


          On May 5, 2009, at 2:17 PM, David Bratman wrote:
          > It is online at <http://thehuntforgollum.s3.amazonaws.com/
          > index.html>. Anyone interested in sharing or reading reactions, or
          > would that still be spoilers at this point? (Not that the outcome
          > is a big surprise or anything like that.)
        • David Bratman
          One-line review: Don t bother. More boring than Peter Jackson at only a quarter the length. How to make a movie of The Hunt for Gollum (down below, spoiler
          Message 4 of 13 , May 7, 2009
          • 0 Attachment
            One-line review: Don't bother. More boring than Peter Jackson at only a
            quarter the length.

            How to make a movie of "The Hunt for Gollum" (down below, "spoiler" alert):






















            1. Peter Jackson begins his film with a Portentious Backstory, so begin your
            film with a Portentious Backstory.

            2. Peter Jackson makes a solemn action-adventure film while minimizing
            Tolkien's moral underpinnings, so by all means make a solemn
            action-adventure film without any moral underpinnings. You've got your good
            guys and your bad guys, so leave it at that.

            3. Peter Jackson's Aragorn mumbles, so your Aragorn should mumble.

            4. Let's not even talk about the Orcs.

            5. Jackson's Gandalf was too shiny, so dress your Gandalf in an old sack.

            6. When filming an indoor conversation, take your production values from old
            Dr. Who serials, and your extras from science fiction conventions.

            7. When filming two people sneaking up on each other in the woods, take your
            mise-en-scène from the "Those We Do Not Speak Of" sequences of M. Night
            Shyamalan's The Village.

            8. When you finally show Gollum close up, show either your independence from
            Peter Jackson, or your inability to follow him closely enough, by modeling
            Gollum not on Andy Serkis, but on Anthony Hopkins playing Hannibal Lecter.

            9. Introduce a Ranger whom Aragorn has never met, and who has only vaguely
            heard of his own Chieftain.

            10. Have Aragorn carry Gollum around in a sack that Serkis's (or Tolkien's,
            for that matter) Gollum could easily have torn his way out of in one minute.
            (Tolkien's Aragorn made Gollum walk in front of him with a halter; this is
            obviously impossible if you're using a CGI Gollum and have virtually no CGI
            budget. But then, why does Gollum have to be CGI? Because Peter Jackson is
            God?)

            11. Have Gollum steal fish from the Woodsmen's windowsills instead of
            drinking blood from cradles. Stabbing orcs is one thing, but this is just
            icky. Do not ask what the Woodsmen put the raw fish on the windowsill for.
            To cool off?

            12. Foreshadowing! Have Aragorn see a Nazgul and tell Gandalf about it, even
            though neither of them should have any idea yet that the Nine are abroad.

            13. It's the beginning of a Dark Age, so film everything Really Dark.

            14. It is imperative to follow the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Fight rule: if
            the hero must single-handedly defeat a troupe of bad guys, the bad guys are
            required to attack him only one at a time. Everybody else has to stand
            around and wait their turn.


            [previously posted on LiveJournal]
          • Jason Fisher
            Very nice, David; many chuckles, especially #14. _______________________________ From: David Bratman To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com Sent:
            Message 5 of 13 , May 7, 2009
            • 0 Attachment
              Very nice, David; many chuckles, especially #14.


              _______________________________
              From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>
              To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Thursday, May 7, 2009 12:20:53 PM
              Subject: Re: [mythsoc] "The Hunt for Gollum" movie


              One-line review: Don't bother. More boring than Peter Jackson at only a
              quarter the length.

              How to make a movie of "The Hunt for Gollum" (down below, "spoiler" alert):

              1. Peter Jackson begins his film with a Portentious Backstory, so begin your
              film with a Portentious Backstory.

              2. Peter Jackson makes a solemn action-adventure film while minimizing
              Tolkien's moral underpinnings, so by all means make a solemn
              action-adventure film without any moral underpinnings. You've got your good
              guys and your bad guys, so leave it at that.

              3. Peter Jackson's Aragorn mumbles, so your Aragorn should mumble.

              4. Let's not even talk about the Orcs.

              5. Jackson's Gandalf was too shiny, so dress your Gandalf in an old sack.

              6. When filming an indoor conversation, take your production values from old
              Dr. Who serials, and your extras from science fiction conventions.

              7. When filming two people sneaking up on each other in the woods, take your
              mise-en-scène from the "Those We Do Not Speak Of" sequences of M. Night
              Shyamalan's The Village.

              8. When you finally show Gollum close up, show either your independence from
              Peter Jackson, or your inability to follow him closely enough, by modeling
              Gollum not on Andy Serkis, but on Anthony Hopkins playing Hannibal Lecter.

              9. Introduce a Ranger whom Aragorn has never met, and who has only vaguely
              heard of his own Chieftain.

              10. Have Aragorn carry Gollum around in a sack that Serkis's (or Tolkien's,
              for that matter) Gollum could easily have torn his way out of in one minute.
              (Tolkien's Aragorn made Gollum walk in front of him with a halter; this is
              obviously impossible if you're using a CGI Gollum and have virtually no CGI
              budget. But then, why does Gollum have to be CGI? Because Peter Jackson is
              God?)

              11. Have Gollum steal fish from the Woodsmen's windowsills instead of
              drinking blood from cradles. Stabbing orcs is one thing, but this is just
              icky. Do not ask what the Woodsmen put the raw fish on the windowsill for.
              To cool off?

              12. Foreshadowing! Have Aragorn see a Nazgul and tell Gandalf about it, even
              though neither of them should have any idea yet that the Nine are abroad.

              13. It's the beginning of a Dark Age, so film everything Really Dark.

              14. It is imperative to follow the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Fight rule: if
              the hero must single-handedly defeat a troupe of bad guys, the bad guys are
              required to attack him only one at a time. Everybody else has to stand
              around and wait their turn.

              [previously posted on LiveJournal]

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Doug Kane
              It occurs to me that I never did add my additional thoughts. David said much of what I wanted to say (in a much more entertaining fashion than I would have).
              Message 6 of 13 , May 10, 2009
              • 0 Attachment
                It occurs to me that I never did add my additional thoughts. David said
                much of what I wanted to say (in a much more entertaining fashion than I
                would have). I'll add just a couple of more comments, particularly the
                specific item that I mentioned previously that I thought directly
                contradicted Tolkien in an important way. Anyone who is still trying to
                avoid spoilers don't read the final paragraph.

                Before I get to that, I'll just mention that on a number of occasions I
                noticed a number of scenes where there were either shots that mimicked shots
                from the Jackson films or characters saying fragments of lines that were
                said by other characters in the Jackson films that seemed to be done not to
                serve the film in any way but simply as some kind of homage to Jackson's
                films. I thought that was ridiculous. I'm sorry that I don't have any
                specific examples to point; I didn't write them down at the time and it was
                too long ago now and too unmemorable for me to remember any of them.

                But at the end of the film, after Gollum is finally captured, Gandalf tells
                Aragorn that Gollum's wretchedness was beyond their power to heal. That
                contradicts what Gandalf actually says in the book, that there is not much
                hope for his cure, but there is still some. And, of course, that small hope
                of Gollum's cure is of critical importance to the story. The fact that these
                filmmakers blithely contradict that (for no good reason that I can see)
                shows a real disregard for Tolkien's work. They don't even have the bad
                excuse that Jackson and company had for most of their deviations from
                Tolkien's story that in some way the deviation served the plot that they
                were telling in their movie (misguided though they might have been). This
                line didn't serve the plot of this mini film in any way. It was just thrown
                in their film as a throwaway line, I guess because they believed that in
                Jackson's story it was true that Gollum was beyond redemption (which is
                debatable in and of itself, though it still infuriates me that they left out
                the tragic scene of Gollum's near redemption at the stairs of Cirith Ungol).

                _____

                From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
                David Bratman
                Sent: Thursday, May 07, 2009 10:21 AM
                To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [mythsoc] "The Hunt for Gollum" movie





                One-line review: Don't bother. More boring than Peter Jackson at only a
                quarter the length.

                How to make a movie of "The Hunt for Gollum" (down below, "spoiler" alert):

                1. Peter Jackson begins his film with a Portentious Backstory, so begin your

                film with a Portentious Backstory.

                2. Peter Jackson makes a solemn action-adventure film while minimizing
                Tolkien's moral underpinnings, so by all means make a solemn
                action-adventure film without any moral underpinnings. You've got your good
                guys and your bad guys, so leave it at that.

                3. Peter Jackson's Aragorn mumbles, so your Aragorn should mumble.

                4. Let's not even talk about the Orcs.

                5. Jackson's Gandalf was too shiny, so dress your Gandalf in an old sack.

                6. When filming an indoor conversation, take your production values from old

                Dr. Who serials, and your extras from science fiction conventions.

                7. When filming two people sneaking up on each other in the woods, take your

                mise-en-scène from the "Those We Do Not Speak Of" sequences of M. Night
                Shyamalan's The Village.

                8. When you finally show Gollum close up, show either your independence from

                Peter Jackson, or your inability to follow him closely enough, by modeling
                Gollum not on Andy Serkis, but on Anthony Hopkins playing Hannibal Lecter.

                9. Introduce a Ranger whom Aragorn has never met, and who has only vaguely
                heard of his own Chieftain.

                10. Have Aragorn carry Gollum around in a sack that Serkis's (or Tolkien's,
                for that matter) Gollum could easily have torn his way out of in one minute.

                (Tolkien's Aragorn made Gollum walk in front of him with a halter; this is
                obviously impossible if you're using a CGI Gollum and have virtually no CGI
                budget. But then, why does Gollum have to be CGI? Because Peter Jackson is
                God?)

                11. Have Gollum steal fish from the Woodsmen's windowsills instead of
                drinking blood from cradles. Stabbing orcs is one thing, but this is just
                icky. Do not ask what the Woodsmen put the raw fish on the windowsill for.
                To cool off?

                12. Foreshadowing! Have Aragorn see a Nazgul and tell Gandalf about it, even

                though neither of them should have any idea yet that the Nine are abroad.

                13. It's the beginning of a Dark Age, so film everything Really Dark.

                14. It is imperative to follow the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Fight rule: if
                the hero must single-handedly defeat a troupe of bad guys, the bad guys are
                required to attack him only one at a time. Everybody else has to stand
                around and wait their turn.

                [previously posted on LiveJournal]






                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • David Bratman
                ... I don t remember exactly what the film says, either, but I don t see those two points as contradictory. Gandalf says that there is little hope, but not no
                Message 7 of 13 , May 13, 2009
                • 0 Attachment
                  From: "Doug Kane" <dougkane@...> wrote:

                  >But at the end of the film, after Gollum is finally captured, Gandalf tells
                  >Aragorn that Gollum's wretchedness was beyond their power to heal. That
                  >contradicts what Gandalf actually says in the book, that there is not much
                  >hope for his cure, but there is still some.

                  I don't remember exactly what the film says, either, but I don't see those
                  two points as contradictory. Gandalf says that there is little hope, but
                  not no hope, that the evil part of Gollum can be cured; but he doesn't say
                  that he can cure him. Gollum has to do that for himself.

                  I think of Frodo's comment on Saruman: "He is fallen, and his cure is beyond
                  us; but I would still spare him, in the hope that he may find it."

                  In the end, of course, Frodo's learning the meaning of Bilbo's pity has
                  tremendous effects on Gollum; and it is tremendously misleading for
                  Amateur-Film-Gandalf to say _only_ that he and Aragorn cannot heal Gollum.
                  But I see this as more a sin of omission than of commission.
                • Doug Kane
                  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
                  Message 8 of 13 , May 13, 2009
                  • 0 Attachment
                    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 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.)

                    _____

                    From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
                    David Bratman
                    Sent: Wednesday, May 13, 2009 8:30 PM
                    To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: Re: [mythsoc] "The Hunt for Gollum" movie





                    From: "Doug Kane" <dougkane@protecting
                    <mailto:dougkane%40protectingrights.net> rights.net> wrote:

                    >But at the end of the film, after Gollum is finally captured, Gandalf tells
                    >Aragorn that Gollum's wretchedness was beyond their power to heal. That
                    >contradicts what Gandalf actually says in the book, that there is not much
                    >hope for his cure, but there is still some.

                    I don't remember exactly what the film says, either, but I don't see those
                    two points as contradictory. Gandalf says that there is little hope, but
                    not no hope, that the evil part of Gollum can be cured; but he doesn't say
                    that he can cure him. Gollum has to do that for himself.

                    I think of Frodo's comment on Saruman: "He is fallen, and his cure is beyond

                    us; but I would still spare him, in the hope that he may find it."

                    In the end, of course, Frodo's learning the meaning of Bilbo's pity has
                    tremendous effects on Gollum; and it is tremendously misleading for
                    Amateur-Film-Gandalf to say _only_ that he and Aragorn cannot heal Gollum.
                    But I see this as more a sin of omission than of commission.






                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • David Bratman
                    ... 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
                    Message 9 of 13 , May 14, 2009
                    • 0 Attachment
                      "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.
                    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.