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The Return of the King (1980)

TV Movie  -   -  Animation | Action | Adventure  -  11 May 1980 (USA)
5.6
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 2,372 users  
Reviews: 52 user | 14 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.

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Title: The Return of the King (TV Movie 1980)

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
...
Aragorn (voice)
...
Lord Denethor (voice)
...
Gandalf (voice)
...
Samwise Gamgee (voice)
Brother Theodore ...
Gollum / Smeagol (voice) (as Theodore)
Paul Frees ...
Orc / Goblin / Uruk-Hai / Lord Elrond (voice)
Don Messick ...
John Stephenson ...
...
Sonny Melendrez ...
...
Glenn Yarbrough ...
The Minstrel (voice)
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Storyline

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 <kchishol@execulink.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 May 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El retorno del rey  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Many Tolkien fans were disappointed when Ralph Bakshi's 1978 adaptation of "Lord of the Rings" covered only the first two books of Tolkien's trilogy. When it became clear that Bakshi would not produce a sequel, Rankin and Bass finished the story for him with this TV movie, disappointing fans even more due to its poor, rushed quality. This TV movie is considered by many fans to be vastly inferior to Bakshi's 1978 movie. See more »

Goofs

Gandalf mispronounces the place-name "Lebennin". The stress should be on the second syllable, not the first. See more »

Quotes

Meriadoc Brandybuck: Nay, Pippin. Not till Bilbo has cut the cake.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

good considering the time crunch
15 October 2003 | by (Dallas, TX) – See all my reviews

I really LIKED the whip song!!!

Considering this was a made-for-TV ANIMATED movie back in 1980, Rankin-Bass did an okay job trying to make amends for Ralph Bakshi's failure. R-B was hired to take the entire finale of LOTR and squeeze it down to under 90 minutes suitable for TV. By comparison, Peter Jackson spent over 90 million to make a 3 1/2 hour movie with a PG-13 rating.

R-B made some tough, hard, and brave decisions to pick what would stay, what would go, and what needed to be changed. Purists should stick with the books, but when you consider that Tolkien himself couldn't tell his whole story within the book and had to include appendices, it really isn't necessary to include every minute detail on TV.

The book spent over 100 pages just wrapping up all the "lose ends" after the ring was destroyed. The quest for the ring was the main plot, not dealing with Saruman, not resolving Aragorn's and Arwen's love, not even dealing with Legolas' and Gimli's bond. While these plots didn't make it to the movie and that's a shame, they are not essential to the main story.

I'm not saying the movie was GREAT. I still chuckle when I think that the actual RETURNING OF THE KING took a five second cameo, I stand by Rankin-Bass if only to pick up Ralph Bakshi's pieces, even in vain.


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