The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
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6 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

A Masterpiece!

Author: Elswet from .: Fiendish Writings in the Dark :.
8 September 2003

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I wasn't going to review this movie. There are hundreds of reviews on it and I frankly wasn't going to waste my time repeating the same words of praise.

When I first learned that they were doing these movies, I thought, "Great! Another series of movies I'll hate, modeled after a trilogy of books that I love." Stephen King's work, being a prime example. I love the literary works, and the movies all just die on the screen; be it big or little. Then I learned that Peter Jackson was directing it and I was even less eager to see the movies. I never liked the Frighteners and Meet the Feebles?! Wow, did that movie stink UP the place!

And then I discovered they had no plans of making the prequel; "The Hobbit," and that was that. I wasn't going to like the movie, and I refused to be excited about it. Any of it. But then, I was GIVEN tickets as an early Yule present and so I begrudgingly attended its premier here in the Smokies. I was very pleasantly surprised. I ended up seeing this movie twice in the theaters, and have since bought the extended edition gift set of this work.

The opening sequence was so well done, that I couldn't find any reason at all to not accept it. They didn't do "The Hobbit," true enough, but they filled in that time and gave the viewers enough of the beginning that I could thoroughly subscribe to the movie.

Many critics have literally bashed Peter Jackson's omission of one of the characters in Frodo's party, but the character was hardly relevant to the plot, the storyline, or the story itself and was best left out. I didn't even miss old Tom "what'shisname," to tell you the truth.

I do have a problem with Aragorn's character's emotionality in the movie. His character in the book was a seasoned Ranger. His emotional instability; ie: his crying openly scene after scene, is completely out of character. It lends to the storyline with Arwen, and furthers the movie along, true enough, and personally, I didn't mind it. It was just out of character. He's rough, he's tough; a seasoned ranger. He shouldn't have been as emotionally portrayed as Jackson did him, although the reasons are clearly due to time constraints. It would have taken forever to develop Aragorn properly, and they frankly did not have enough time, even with the three-plus hours of screen time.

BUT, Jackson's characters were very well developed, the story was very well told. There was a LOT of dialog, but there was a lot of detail that would've been left out; many, many finer details that never would've been able to be expressed without the richness of dialogue and Jackson and his company saw that, thankfully.

All in all, as a Tolkien fan from WAY back, I feel that Peter Jackson did a marvelous job with this, the opening edition of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. It rates so far above, "The Godfather" trilogy (to which it has been compared), that there IS no comparison.

The acting is exemplary. There is no stiffness, no badly delivered lines, no hesitation in performance. Sean Astin truly and greatly surprised me with his brilliant performance as SamWise. The scenery and cinematography is brilliant. The sets and scenes are so well done, I only spied a single flaw...and I was looking! There was a car in the background of one shot! But the car will be missing from the DVD release, I'm sure.

The wardrobing and costumes were finely hand-made; treated to look worn and imperfect, as they should and the Shire was so well done, I was as delighted as any child on Yule morning. But the thing which captured me the most and held me spellbound was the casting. They put just the right people into just the right roles. I simply loved the characters.. Each and every one of them felt just like the book (except for the deviation I already mentioned about Aragorn's emotional state).

First we had "The Godfather," then we were given the "Star Wars" trilogy and now, we have the Lord of the Rings to love. I look forward with great anticipation to the rest of this series.

Thank you, Peter Jackson, for giving of yourself to this extent. It is above and beyond all for which I could have hoped.

This first installment rates a full 10/10 from...

the Fiend :.

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7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Best adventure film of all-time

Author: Sneaky_Pete_XXVI ( from Michigan
6 August 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Who can deny the power of the rings? Anybody who watches this film with any remote interest will find it to be utterly amazing with a childish flair and heart-felt bondage to the characters. No other film in the history of cinema has been able to capture the intensity of traveling across mountains to marshes. This is Peter Jackson's best film, although he was more than rewarded for the return of the king. I believe that this film is the best of the ring trilogy because it is so simple to understand if one pays attention. I've heard countless people state that this film is boring, but then I retort by saying, "Did you know what was happening?" And they reply with a simple, "they wanted to destroy the ring." This is true to a first grader, but so much more is happening around the film. Ten out of Ten.

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8 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

The excellent Film adaptation of an excellent novel

Author: Amy Colton from United Kingdom
28 September 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

New Zealander Peter Jackson's film adaptation of Tolkien's mythological masterpiece "The Lord of the Rings; The Fellowship of the Ring" (the first part of Tolkien's story) the epic journey and battle between good and evil retold on film. The story of Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood) a young hobbit from the Shire, a small place in Western Middle Earth embarks on a dangerous quest to destroy the legendary one ring with the help of a courageous fellowship. The film follows the hobbits journey across middle earth to Rivendell where a council of all the races of middle Earth decide the fate of the one ring; a fellowship is assigned to aid Frodo in his quest to destroy the ring in Mordor. Along this journey they encounter numbers of evil forces sent by Sauron to obtain the ring and rid the world of the goodness. Jackson's daunting task of constructing the screen adaptation of a literacy masterpiece builds an anticipation to fail as some of the audience were aware of Tolkien's depth of creation, having read the book; however Jackson successfully recreated the world of Middle Earth on screen using a variety of techniques. This transition between book and film is often made but rarely is it done with such brilliance, an exceptional success in which Jackson recreated the classic novel. Jackson's film consisted of an enormous cast and crew and was mostly shot on location in New Zealand, took over fifteen months to film in entirety, yet this massive scale film still brought out the fundamental themes of human existence and all the themes Tolkien originally created. Jackson's choice to film the three films out of sequence had no implications to the film. Elijah Wood delivers a knockout performance as Frodo Baggins and really captures the role. The quality of acting is often lost in big blockbusters, however in this film it remains to a very high standard which is a great acclaim considering the large amounts of actors involved.

Jackson opens his film using non simultaneous sound; this powerful lyrical voice over with a black screen beautifully sets the tone of the film and we are brought into the film world immediately. The delayed opening of the film creates suspense to speculate on the opening frame. The powerful prologue that follows demonstrates Jackson's film making to its best, the narrative is set and as we are told the history of the ring we are diverged from reality and are brought into an incredible action sequence combining great cinematography and special effects. The kinetic camera is a great metaphor for the intensity of the battle. Jackson demonstrates the narrative effectively with the battle sequences from the past, cleverly signifying the depth of Saurons power and the power of the one ring. A series of dramatic close ups of the one ring circled by fire, coupled with the signature music which is repeated throughout clearly symbolises the narrative. Jackson also employs techniques of extended fades of entire black to demonstrate the evil in the narrative successfully. The spectacular opening to this film undoubtedly sets the standard for the rest.

Many powerful cinematic techniques are employed throughout the film to add to the creation of a fantasy world. Difficulties arising in scale issues between the hobbits and human characters are successfully overcome using scale doubles and techniques such as forced perspective with a moving camera. Sound is used most effectively and powerfully engages a distinct sense of mood in important parts of the film. This is most noticeable when Frodo puts on the ring and enters the world of the ring wraiths; the diegetic music and sound we could hear is taken out and instead is replaced with a number of eerie sound effects and lighting techniques, this impressively conveys the evil in the narrative.

The Mise en Scene is composed with such a brilliance that it successfully transcends normal concepts of reality and has enabled Peter Jackson to create a totally imaginary convincing world on film. Sets and locations are conceived with incredible care and detail and are loyal to the descriptions of Tolkien. The location choice of New Zealand provides an ideal backdrop to the creation. The remote mountainous locations and woodlands provide the perfect locations to best demonstrate the narrative successfully. Costume and make-up both successfully aid the concept of creating Middle Earth.

One of the greatest sequences in "The Fellowship Of the Ring" is the end battle sequence at Amon Hen. Jackson produces an immense battle scene between the remaining members of the fellowship and the Uruk-Hai. The sequence begins with Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) battling with the Uruk-Hai, the kinetic camera and the increasing speed of the editing intensifies the battle; the music changes and the tempo also quickens this effectively brings the audience into the battle. Brilliantly choreographed fights also aid the creation of a believable scene on film. Sound also plays an important part in this powerful emotional climax of the death of Boromir. We see him receive an arrow to his chest and immediately the sound is removed. This hard hitting absence of the nondiegetic sound and the fade of the diegetic sound greatly contributes to the reality of the battle as we are forced into Boromir's position, a great technique in which Jackson captures this highly significant moment beautifully.

Jackson establishes an incredibly high standard with the "Fellowship of the Ring" for the sequels, combining a detailed Mise en Scene, amazing cinematography, visual effects music and sound to create one of the best film adaptations of a book.

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8 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Set pieces...battles...set pieces...battles...

Author: Neil Doyle from U.S.A.
21 September 2002

THE LORD OF THE RINGS has its admirers who are familiar with the plot and the strange characters inhabiting it--and who genuinely love the book and were eager to see their favorite story on the big screen.

In this case, it helps if you are familiar with the plot and the characters because the screenplay is a murky one with none of the characters given enough time for us to understand what they are all about. Instead, we move from set piece to set piece (grand, beautiful sets abetted by dazzling visual effects) and in between each new grand view locale there's another battle of good vs. evil with weapons clashing in every direction and limbs lopped off as fierce battles ensue.

It's a sort of dungeons and dragons world and if this is your thing then this is your dark movie adventure. I saw this on video rather than the big screen so I can assure you it probably all looks a lot grander on the theater screen with the deafening stereo sound effects adding to the vigor of the story. But none of the characters really stand out amid all this swordplay and skullduggery.

Only Ian McKellen and Elijah Wood have substantial enough parts to connect a viewer to the movie. The others are all backgrounders without becoming characters we care about--with the exception, perhaps, of Christopher Lee as Saruman the White, who always makes a convincing villain. Another problem is the sound--voices are dropped so often that much of the stilted dialogue is muted. This is a special drawback because several of the actors have some sort of accent. The worst offender happens to be Ian McKellen who nevertheless gives a very compelling performance behind his grizzly make-up--however, someone should have dubbed some of his lines for greater clarity. The likeable Elijah Wood relies on his specialty--wide-eyed wonder or tense concern for close-ups, but it's rather a one-note performance.

All in all, I was disappointed. With all of the hype (and due to some of the comments expressed here) I expected a much more substantial story than this, especially for a movie with a running time of almost three hours. The drawback on video is that many of the special effects are pretty obvious and the big screen grandeur is lost even when viewed on a large TV screen.

A bit of a letdown in every department. Even the score only occasionally has the right mystical quality between battles. The battles are not quite as brutal as those in GLADIATOR but their intensity is just as great and they turn up with alarming frequency!

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Tolkien is back!

Author: pietrocinieri from Italy
15 February 2015

The Lord of the Rings - The Fellowship of the Ring is the first implementation of the Tolkien trilogy. Despite some discrepancies with the original text, the film is presented as an excellent transposition. Peter Jackson has captured the essence transmitted from the book and has captured the attention of the viewer involving him with shots and spectacular special effects. I liked the choice of actors who have fallen in the roles perfectly. Excellent setting and the ability of the director to give a comprehensive view of each. Detailed reconstruction of the places described by Tolkien, fascinating about atmosphere and above all, kept the make-up. In my opinion, The Lord of the Rings is a spectacular work that deserves to be seen.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Best film series you will ever watch.

Author: Adrian Nicolae Neacsu from Romania, Ploiesti
2 February 2015

Best film series you will ever watch. This review applies to all three movies.

I love this movie. Great storyline, amazing effects, good actors, great battles and fights, a lot of suspense, great acting and a truly breath-taking soundtrack. Overall, an amazing journey that you will enjoy it every minute.

The entire movie is full of beautiful sets and stunning landscapes. Peter Jackson brought to life the vision of The Lord of The Rings to the big screen, not a single thing he could have made it better.

I don't know how to describe any better this movie, is truly one of the best film ever made, full of magic, stories, love and battle.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

The greatest fantasy film of all-time

Author: Geeky Randy from United States
29 November 2014

An absolutely gorgeous adaptation of J. R. R. Tolkien's first LORD OF THE RINGS installment detailing how well-meaning young hobbit Wood unwittingly inherits a ring from his adventurous uncle Holm which possesses a dark force that is powerful enough to end all life in Middle-Earth. Visually wondrous even for those who aren't that into the fantasy genre. This installment is particularly charming for less action and more character development… and, for some reason, the Middle-Earth lingo works really well in this movie over the second and third films. Although FELLOWSHIP merely teases the viewer with the appearance of Gollum—while TWO TOWERS and RETURN are basically owned by Serkis as Tolkien's timelessly wretched creature who's not quite friend or foe—the movie is just too lovable to really even need his inclusion. McKellen is perfect as Gandalf the Grey, and Bean's performance brings to the foreground the genius of all these characters who suffers from similar temptations and weaknesses that we do in reality. It is FELLOWSHIP that holds the clearest mirror up to us, while the following two films kind of just linger in the wartime aftermath. The greatest fantasy film of all-time.

**** (out of four)

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

If you love fiction, a must see.

Author: smithremail from United States
6 December 2010

This particular movie is centered around a survival of mankind. It illustrates several scenes of sorcery and demonolgy. There are a lot of special effects and computer generated images of hobbits. There is one scene where the image looks very realistic. There is one dwarfs all others are dead which are called mountain dwellers they lived in the earth. The hobbits lived in the shire and were little people. We have good fairies that fought along the side of humans. Evil kings who rode on dragon typed creatures called nastaf, also a good and bad wizard and demons that are called or-ks. Struggle for power and the right to exists. "Good versus evil".

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

The Lord of the Rings : The Fellowship of the Ring - Saturday Night Review

Author: Prashanth Srivatsa from India
27 November 2010

Simply Stunning. Mind blowing. Breath-taking. The movie is all of that and more.

And since it is the first movie of one of the finest trilogies, a tiny outline to the story would be aptly fitting. The story goes around a young Hobbit named Frodo, from the Shire, who embarks on an epic journey having been entrusted with a powerful and ancient ring that he must destroy by taking it deep into the cracks of Mount Doom, in Mordor, the enemy's lair itself. It is not a versatile story, but a quest. An Almighty quest that is filled with determination, friendship, brotherhood, hope, and trust.

Giving his utmost respect to the late Mr. Tolkein, Peter Jackson has undertaken and completed a wonder of a movie that never fails to leave you with your mouth gape open, the marvel of the land that is Middle-earth, with the wide variety of characters ranging from the little Hobbitses to the giant Wizard Gandalf. It is a quest beyond anyone's imagination and capability and the legendarium of J.R.R. Tolkein is executed to perfection on to the big screen.

The Shire has been depicted beautifully, with its people (the Hobbits). Every step of the journey has breathtaking scenic shots and sequences that leaves the audience craving for more. The magnificence of Lothlurien should not be missed, too.

Coming to the cast, the roles played by almost everyone is near-perfect. Elijah Wood (Frodo) and Sean Astin (Sam) represent the perfect hobbits with supporting roles of the Fellowship representing Legolas, Aragorn, Gandalf, Gimli, Boromir, Merry and Pippin have been wonderful. The dialogues are a no-miss, some of them are truly excellent and add to the effect to the movie. Gandalf's "You shall not Pass" statement to the Balrog is of such power and magnitude, it will send a chill down your spine. The screenplay, the display, the music is all magnificent and adds to the beauty of the Lord of the Rings.

All in all, The Fellowship of The Ring is a masterpiece. Those unfamiliar with the Middle-Earth and its characters will find it a "little" difficult to cope up with, but no worries. The mere beauty of this film will leave them happy come end. This is a terrific movie, and it will be one of the best movies I have ever seen, along with the other 2 movies of the LOTR franchise. A full 10 / 10. Do not miss it.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

The Lord of the Rings - An epic tale you will remember!

Author: graham36-872-435014 from United States
30 October 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring is a fantasy adventure based on the first volume of J.R.R. Tolkien's masterpiece The Lord of the Rings. Following the book, the film picks up the adventure with the hobbit Bilbo Baggins (Ian Holmes) celebrating his birthday in the peaceful town of Hobbiton. Bilbo bequeaths his prized magical ring to his nephew Frodo, played by Elijah Wood, while he himself leaves his home for one last adventure. Adventure finds Frodo, however, when the wizard Gandalf (Sir Ian McKellan) discovers that Frodo's new ring is really "the one ring of power" (Jackson, 2001) sought by the Dark Lord Sauron. Frodo must set out to destroy the ring by returning it to the fires of Mt. Doom where it was forged. He is guided by Gandalf, and aided by his gardener Sam (Sean Astin) and protected by a Fellowship that includes, Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen), Legolas (Orlando Bloom), Pippin (Billy Boyd), Merry (Dominic Monaghan), Gimli (John Rhys-Davis), and Boromir (Sean Bean). Christopher Lee plays a role as the wizard Saruman while Cate Blanchett, Liv Tyler, and Huggo Weaving make appearances as Elves.

The Lord of the Rings is a classic tale of Good vs. Evil and the struggle to overcome temptation in the face of corrupting power. Frodo must resist the power of the ring if he is going to return it to Mt. Doom, thereby destroying it. Frodo is set upon by beasts and ghouls throughout his journey and must even escape his own companions to achieve his goal. This archetypal theme of good vs. evil is also seen in Star Wars where Luke Skywalker must defeat the evil Empire while resisting the temptation to turn to the Dark Side. Both films show the triumph of unlikely heroes over incredibly powerful enemies.

The music in The Lord of the Rings was composed by Howard Shore, and is a thematic element that enhances the overall feeling delivered by the film. There are many journeys within the film, and the music helps to establish the transitions from one journey to the next, such as when the fellowship was leaving Rivendell to begin their trip to Mordor. The music also enhances the dramatic element during scenes that involve the temptation of the ring, or scenes that show the components of evil.

Another element that contributes to the theme is the use of lighting. The scenes involving the dark lord and the ringwraiths are dark and gloomy. During the meeting at Rivendell, Gandalf spoke in the tongue of Mordor and the lighting quickly darkened and changed the mood of the scene. However, when Frodo first awoke at Rivendell, everything was very bright and colorful. Through lighting techniques, and sound effects, the director has created a film that helps control the intensity and mood of each scene throughout an epic tale that deals with good vs evil.

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