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The Lord of the Rings (1978)

The Fellowship of the Ring embark on a journey to destroy the One Ring and end Sauron's reign over Middle-earth.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Guard ...
Frodo (voice)
...
Gandalf (voice)
Michael Scholes ...
Sam (voice)
...
Aragorn (voice)
...
Merry (voice)
...
Pippin (voice)
...
Bilbo (voice)
Michael Graham Cox ...
Boromir (voice) (as Michael Graham-Cox)
...
Legolas (voice)
David Buck ...
Gimli (voice)
...
Gollum (voice)
Fraser Kerr ...
Saruman (voice)
...
Theoden (voice)
Michael Deacon ...
Wormtongue (voice)
...
Elrond (voice) (as Andre Morell)
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Storyline

A young Hobbit named Frodo (Guard) is thrown on an amazing adventure, when he is appointed the job of destroying the one ring which was created by the dark lord Sauron. He is assigned with warriors including Gandalf (Squire), Aragorn (Hurt) and Boromir (Cox). It's not going to be an easy journey for the Fellowship of the Ring, on the ultimate quest to rid Middle-Earth of all evil. Written by Film_Fan

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Come to Middle-earth, a world beyond the furthest reaches of your imagination. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

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Release Date:

15 November 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$626,649 (USA) (19 November 1978)

Gross:

$921,769 (USA) (19 November 1978)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(5.1) (L-R)| (Dolby 5.1) (5.1) (L-R)

Color:

(DeLuxe)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Ralph Bakshi had originally planned to use music by Led Zeppelin in the film, but was unable to get the rights. Led Zeppelin were known as being fans of the books, with several of their songs, "Misty Mountain Hop", "Over the Hills and Far Away", "The Battle Of Evermore", "Ramble On", referencing imagery and characters from Tolkien's books. See more »

Goofs

Saruman is called "Saruman the White" and "Saruman of Many Colors", yet throughout this movie he is dressed entirely in red. See more »

Quotes

Frodo Baggins: I don't know Sam, I think one of the Enemy's spies would look fairer and feel fouler.
Aragorn: [chuckling] While I look foul and feel fair is that it?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Wizards: Ralph Bakshi - The Wizard of Animation (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

MITHRANDIR
Music by Leonard Rosenman
Words by Mark Fleischer
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Uniquely animated drama & characters true to source
31 July 2006 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

I'm fond of this film and it vexes me that so many "reviewers" rank it below the Peter Jackson trilogy. A filmed novel is always interpretive; in particular an animated film relies on the artist's vision and should be judged on its own terms. Speaking as a purist, this is a finer homage to Tolkien than the updated version. While this film has its flaws it stays truer to the source, especially so far as the characters are concerned.

In the Jackson version Tolkien's Frodo is barely recognizable: from the first scenes he is portrayed as a weakling, constantly wavering, manipulated by forces around him and never standing on his own two feet (this is physically and metaphorically true.) You wonder why fate chose this limp biscuit to carry the one ring to the Cracks of Doom. Jackson unforgivably rewrites Tolkien and robs Frodo of his finest moment when he allows Arwen to rescue him from the Ringwraiths...Bakshi's version respects the original, presenting a Frodo who demands the wraiths "Go back and trouble me no more!" Bakshi sustains Frodo's character as Tolkien conceived it. We see his decline as the weight of his burden increases. Frodo is so pivotal to Lord of the Rings you wonder why Jackson took such liberties (he does so with numerous characters)since character development propels the plot to its inevitable conclusion. Bakshi's film better explores the companionship between Legolas and Gimli in a few judicious scenes that are completely lacking in Jackson's version. Similarly we see Boromir horsing with Pippin and Merry, furthering the idea of fellowship. For my liking the camaraderie is more developed in the animated version than the live action.

Tolkien's poetry is an important ingredient in the novels and Bakshi makes tribute to this in one of my favorite scenes: when Frodo sings the "Merry Old Inn" song, minutes before stumbling into Strider. The cheery tune is chillingly juxtaposed with the darker theme music when seconds later, invisible to his friends but visible to the wraiths, Frodo is dangerously exposed. This is one of the most atmospheric portions of the film and chills me whenever I see it.

The well documented budget/time restrictions limit this film's final impact but had it been completed it may have resonated with more viewers. As it is, it's worth a look. Even its detractors admit that Peter Jackson derived much of his inspiration from this prototype.


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