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The Lord of the Rings (1978)

Trailer
1:19 | Trailer

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The Fellowship of the Ring embark on a journey to destroy the One Ring and end Sauron's reign over Middle-earth.

Director:

Ralph Bakshi

Writers:

Chris Conkling (screenplay), Peter S. Beagle (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
4,592 ( 505)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Guard Christopher Guard ... Frodo (voice)
William Squire ... Gandalf (voice)
Michael Scholes Michael Scholes ... Sam (voice)
John Hurt ... Aragorn (voice)
Simon Chandler ... Merry (voice)
Dominic Guard ... Pippin (voice)
Norman Bird ... Bilbo (voice)
Michael Graham Cox Michael Graham Cox ... Boromir (voice) (as Michael Graham-Cox)
Anthony Daniels ... Legolas (voice)
David Buck David Buck ... Gimli (voice)
Peter Woodthorpe ... Gollum (voice)
Fraser Kerr Fraser Kerr ... Saruman (voice)
Philip Stone ... Theoden (voice)
Michael Deacon Michael Deacon ... Wormtongue (voice)
André Morell ... Elrond (voice) (as Andre Morell)
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Storyline

A young Hobbit known as Frodo has been thrown on an amazing adventure, when he is appointed the job of destroying the One Ring, which was created by the Dark Lord Sauron. He is assigned with three warriors including Gandelf, Aragorn, and Boromir. But it's not going to be an easy journey for the Fellowship of the Ring, on the ultimate quest to rid the Middle-earth of all evil. Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A single dream is more powerful than a thousand realities See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

RalphBakshi.com

Country:

USA | UK | Spain

Language:

English | Sindarin

Release Date:

15 November 1978 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$626,649, 19 November 1978, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$30,471,420, 31 December 1979
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

3 Channel Stereo (5.1) (L-R)| Dolby Stereo (Dolby 5.1) (5.1) (L-R)

Color:

Color (DeLuxe)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rotoscoped action scenes were filmed in Spain. See more »

Goofs

The Dwarf Gimli is almost as tall as the human and Elven characters in this movie. Presumably the actor who played him in the live-action footage was insufficiently short, and it was considered impractical to shrink him in the rotoscoping process. See more »

Quotes

Gandalf: Long ago, in the early years of the Second Age, the great Elven-smiths forged rings of power. Nine for mortal men, seven for the Dwarf lords, three for the tall Elf Kings. But then, the dark lord learned the craft of ring making and made the Master Ring, the one ring to rule them all. With the One Ring, Middle-Earth was his, and he could not be overcome. As the last alliance of men and Elves fell beneath his power, he did not notice the heroic shadow who slipped in. It was Prince Isildur, of ...
See more »

Alternate Versions

The version screened on British TV in the 1980s contains more music than the recently-released VHS and DVD version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Big Bang Theory: The Transporter Malfunction (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

MITHRANDIR
Music by Leonard Rosenman
Words by Mark Fleischer
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Underrated adaptation
12 February 2000 | by jvowles-2See all my reviews

As an animated film from 1978, this is pretty good--generally well above the standard of the days when Disney hadn't done anything good in years (and Tolkien cared little for Disney anyway). It gets major points for innovative and careful camera work, applying cinematic techniques with relative success. The much-maligned rotoscoping actually works pretty well, especially with the Ringwraiths, and the opening narration. However, it is so drastically overused--possibly as a money-saving technique--that it detracts from the overall effect. The same technique that makes wraiths spooky and otherworldly doesn't fare so well in the Prancing Pony.

As for the adaptation of the story, it's actually quite good. We lose little bits here and there, minor details such as the Old Forest and Tom Bombadil, the Gaffer and the Sackville-Bagginses. We compress a few characters, such as revising Legolas as one of Elrond's household and an old friend of Aragorn's, but that's a rather wise decision for film. In books you have room to include the references to the larger world of the Elves and Middle-Earth's vast history. In film, you trade that for visuals and sound that convey the same elements in a different way. Nothing critical is truly lost here, and although I have minor quibbles about some of the changes, I'm generally pretty happy with it.

If only the dratted writers had managed to remember Saruman's name--he's frequently referred to as Aruman, a decision probably made to make him more distinct from similarly-named Sauron; it took me a second viewing before I was certain I hadn't misheard it. It's also annoying that Boromir is a bloody stage viking, and irritable from the start. However, Gandalf is excellent, and most of the rest of the voicework is excellent. If only John Hurt weren't too old to play Aragorn; I love his voice.

Of course, with the film ending at the midpoint of the story, there's a vast disappointment built in. What makes it far, far worse is the altogether miserable job done by the Rankin & Bass crew on the sequel. That they were permitted to do Return of the King after butchering The Hobbit remains a huge mystery; they seem more interested in bad songs than in proper storytelling. For all its faults, this film's heart is solidly in place and it tries very hard to accomplish a nearly impossible task. I can only hope that the upcoming series of films keeps as true to its vision...


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