I'm surprised there was no discussion of this interesting blog post (http://scienceblogs.com/dotphysics/2010/07/how_fast_is_the_beacon_of_gond.php)
where a Physics professor tries to estimate time and distances for the beacons of Gondor (from the Peter Jackson movies).
Naturally, a bazillion people left comments offering all sorts of glaring controversial corrections.
And I couldn't allow all THAT to go with comment myself (http://tolkien-studies.com/blog/index.php/michael/2010/08/07/the_physics_professor_and_the_beacon_hil)
But I find it interesting that people are still talking about the movies in this fashion. Perhaps the anticipation for "The Hobbit" is the catalyst that has everyone thinking about the three LoTR films.
Some of the Tolkien grandsons (and one great-grandson) have been in the news recently and naturally the press bring up the movies. I cannot find the reference now but I did recently read an article where one of the grandsons (I think) said he liked the first movie but felt the quality declined with the second and third.
The immense pressure that is being placed on Peter Jackson to step up to direct the "Hobbit" movies may limit the options for cinematic expression in Middle-earth. I think Guillermo del Toro would have done a fine job of matching Peter Jackson's Middle-earth while bringing something new to the mix.
At what point will discussions go from being about Peter Jackson's work to being about Middle-earth in film? Sure, we have "Born of Hope" and "The Hunt for Gollum" to talk about but they don't get nearly as much attention as the PJ film franchise.
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