The Return of the King (1980)

TV Movie  |  Not Rated  |   |  Animation, Action, Adventure  |  11 May 1980 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.7/10 from 2,621 users  
Reviews: 53 user | 17 critic

Two Hobbits struggle to destroy the Ring in Mount Doom while their friends desperately fight evil Lord Sauron's forces in a final battle.


(novels), (adapted for the screen)
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Cast overview:
Aragorn (voice)
Lord Denethor (voice)
Gandalf (voice)
Samwise Gamgee (voice)
Brother Theodore ...
Gollum / Smeagol (voice) (as Theodore)
Paul Frees ...
Don Messick ...
John Stephenson ...
Sonny Melendrez ...
Eowyn / Dernhelm (voice)
Glenn Yarbrough ...
The Minstrel (voice)


This film adapts the final book of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy where the Hobbits, Frodo and Samwise, struggle through the barren land of Mordor to destroy the Ruling Ring in Mount Doom. At the same time, Gandalf and the others wage a desperate battle against the forces of Sauron at Minas Tirith, but Sauron seems to have the upper hand while the source of his power, the Ring, slowly threatens to corrupt its bearers. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The thrilling climax to J.R.R. Tolkien's classic hobbit stories ... in animation. See more »


Not Rated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

11 May 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El retorno del rey  »

Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


John Huston directed Theodore Bikel in The African Queen (1951), which also featured Katharine Hepburn. Hepburn was played in The Aviator (2004) by Cate Blanchett, who also appeared in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003). See more »


Many names of locations and characters are mispronounced: Gorgoroth as Gorogoroth, Minas Tirith as Mine-as Tirith (instead of Me-nas), Cirith Ungol as Sirith Ungol (insteaf of Kirith), Smaug as Smog (instead of Sma-ug), Sauron as Soron (instead of Sow-ron), Lebennin as LebEnnin (instead of LEbennin). See more »


Frodo Baggins: Oh Sam, what have I said, what have I done?
See more »

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User Reviews

"Where there's a whip, there's a way!"
28 February 2005 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Ten minutes less singing replaced with actual development of the story would have made this mediocre animated version of Tolkien's classic at least somewhat similar to the actual story. As it is, we get a lot of tired, dull hippy tunes and a story that moves slower than molases, and a neglect of a number of critical events from the book. Generally inferior to the Bakshi "Lord of the Rings" and definitely inferior to Peter Jackson's stunning special editions. ("Do you not know death when you see it?!") Still, mildly amusing, and there's always that groovy "Where there's a whip..." Calypso-disco may yet be the strongest weapon in Mordor's arsenal!

5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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