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A Different Take on Return of the King
So many people are praising this movie and think it is amazing. While I agree that this movie is very good overall, I wanted to give a different review, showing the negatives.
I think it's best to start with the main character, Frodo. While Frodo was a smart, strong character in The Fellowship of the Ring, he is suddenly weak throughout most of this movie. It's not good to make the main character weak all the time, because the movie loses its drive. Frodo is always tired and desperate. Every step is a mountain for him, and he barely does anything. After all his time spent with his best friend Sam, he is still too immature to trust Sam, ignore Gollum's lies, and resist the urge to keep the ring for himself. He and Sam are way too isolated in the movie, so much so that the viewers basically forget about them as they focus on the epic battle scenes with all the other characters. Instead of Frodo conquering himself as he should have, Sam has to help him along the whole time, even to the point of carrying him. Frodo's finger is bitten off at the end. It just doesn't seem right to leave the main character with part of his limb gone. Frodo's reaction to Gandalf near the end is creepy more than happy. At the end, Frodo is taken off with Gandalf to some far away place. We have no idea where he is going or why he is taken.
Sam is way too dominating and emotional. The movie ends with Sam strangely, as if the director is completely obsessed with him for some reason. Sam marries a woman who has not been mentioned in the entire trilogy, and he looks too young to even get married. Also, Sam finds Frodo suffocating in a web completely covering him, yet he only unbinds his head and then decides that Frodo is dead.
Gandalf loses his sense of humor. He sleeps with his eyes open. He charges through a city on horseback without hesitation, and no one seems to get run over.
Aragorn's huge kiss with Arwen is way too much at the end of the movie. His singing is not needed after he becomes king. His bowing to the hobbits is also out of place.
Saruman completely disappears. I honestly can't remember what happened to him. It's not right to take one of the main villains out of the picture with no explanation.
Gollum appears in the first scene and fights with his cousin over the ring. The scene is a flashback to an earlier time. Those who are not watching the Lord of the Rings films back to back may be confused.
Pippin is too prevalent. I think he is supposed to provide comedy relief, but he ends up being an annoying, dopey distraction in the battle scenes. In the scene with Denethor, his cheesy kissing of the ring is not needed. Also, his singing during the battle led by Faramir is not needed.
Legolas barely has any parts. He is mostly nonexistent for the first part of the movie. He later explodes on the scene by killing the elephant. More character development was needed with Legolas in this film, and, quite frankly, throughout the entire trilogy.
Eowen doesn't fit in the battle scenes. She is the only woman in the battle, too. Why didn't other women fight? Eowen especially doesn't fit killing the Lord of the Nazgul. She isn't a major character. I honestly think Frodo should have killed him because Frodo was the one who was stabbed by him in Fellowship of the Ring. Also, Eowen took way too much time to react to Theodin's death. And what is the point of Eowen's romance with Aragorn? It never leads to anything.
The Lord of the Nazgul appears out of nowhere. He was never mentioned in the first two films. He says that no one can defeat him. Let's imagine that he did indeed stab Frodo in Fellowship of the Ring, as Gandalf said. Well, Aragorn chased the Nazgul attacker away. Thus, the Lord of the Nazgul must have been defeated.
Faramir is wounded and trapped by the enemy, yet we later seem him alive and helpless in the palace shortly before his mad father tries to burn him to death. Shortly after Faramir is rescued, he disappears. It defeats the point of rescue if the character disappears shortly after.
Grima Wormtongue, a major villain in The Two Towers, is not shown. In Two Towers, he was sent away. He disappears along with his master, Saruman.
Theodin is the only memorable character that dies. Why don't more characters die? There are too many battles and too many Orcs for so many on the good side to remain alive.
The movie doesn't have enough comedy relief as the first two films did. A movie that long and loaded needs that relief.
Finally, the end is way too long and left me feeling very disappointed with the film. Why does it go on way after the ring is destroyed? I began to forget the wonderful scenes earlier and get very bored with the emotional, drawn out goodbye scenes and the odd return to the Shire. The Shire wasn't really needed to end out such a strong movie. The movie should have ended with Aragorn's new kingship at Minas Tirith. Frodo's uncle, unusually aged in the past four years, is suddenly brought back and he joins Frodo and Gandalf in their unexplainable journey. I think the producers didn't know how to end the movie. Therefore, they decided to make it epic by adding thirty minutes of fluff. They then begin the credits with a casual, modern-sounding song that doesn't fit with a medieval/fantasy movie like Return of the King.