After the rebels have been brutally overpowered by the Empire on their newly established base, Luke Skywalker takes advanced Jedi training with Master Yoda, while his friends are pursued by Darth Vader as part of his plan to capture Luke.
Eight years after the Joker's reign of anarchy, the Dark Knight is forced to return from his imposed exile to save Gotham City from the brutal guerrilla terrorist Bane with the help of the enigmatic Catwoman.
While Frodo and Sam, now accompanied by a new guide, continue their hopeless journey towards the land of shadow to destroy the One Ring, each member of the broken fellowship plays their part in the battle against the evil wizard Saruman and his armies of Isengard.
Better Paced than the first, the battle for Isengard was excellent
We have been waiting an entire year for this one!!! The Two Towers picks up right where last years Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring leaves off. The director, Peter Jackson, did not include a recap of the last movie, so if you don't remember what happened in the first movie you better rent it and refresh your memory before you head off to the theater.
When we last left our fellowship, it had splintered apart. Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood) and Sam Gamgee (Sean Astin) continue there quest to return the all powerful and evil ring to Mordor where it can be destroyed. They take on the creature Gollum (Andy Serkis) as their guide to Mordor despite Gollum's obsession with getting `his precious' back. Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen), Legolas (Orlando Bloom), and Gimli (John Rhys-Davies) begin by trying to find the kidnapped Merry (Dominic Monaghan) and Pippin (Billy Boyd), but end up getting caught up in a battle to save a race of humans. The evil wizard Saruman (Christopher Lee), controlled by Dark Lord Sauron created a grand Uruk-hai army that is sent to destroy the race of Humans at the fortress Isengard. The presumed dead Gandolf (Ian McKellen) also returns to lend his assistance in battling Lord Sauron's troops.
This film was better paced than the first in the trilogy. There were still some breaks in the action that were a little dull, but the dialog was necessary to further the story. With three separate stories going on simultaneously between the three groups of the splintered fellowship, the film kept the action moving quickly. Clocking in at 179 minutes, it is just one minute longer than the first film. This time, I didn't mind the length. The battle for Isengard comprised about a third of the film, and it was very intense.
The rest of the film had a lot of the same excellent cinematic shots as the first movie. The shots tracking the actors from above (done by helicopter) with the beautiful New Zealand mountains and countryside in the background were just amazing. The landscapes helped to keep me involved with the story when the action slowed for dialog intensive scenes.
The creature Gollum played a very key roll in this movie, and the computer-generated character was very lifelike and amusing. He reminded me of Dobby the `house elf' in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Gollum and the Dwarf were the two main comic relief characters in this very serious film.
To conclude, we had to wait a year for this film, and it lived up to expectations! A final reminder this is the middle film in the trilogy so you can expect another ending that leaves you wanting more! Not to worry though, the third and final film is due out next Christmas.
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