5.7/10
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52 user 18 critic

The Return of the King (1980)

Two Hobbits struggle to destroy the Ring in Mount Doom while their friends desperately fight evil Lord Sauron's forces in a final battle.

Writers:

J.R.R. Tolkien (novels), Romeo Muller (adapted for the screen)
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Popularity
3,492 ( 981)

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Cast

Cast overview:
Orson Bean ... Frodo Baggins / Bilbo Baggins (voice)
Theodore Bikel ... Aragorn (voice)
William Conrad ... Lord Denethor (voice)
John Huston ... Gandalf (voice)
Roddy McDowall ... Samwise Gamgee (voice)
Brother Theodore ... Gollum / Smeagol (voice) (as Theodore)
Paul Frees ... Orc / Goblin / Uruk-Hai / Captain Shagrat / Lieutenant Snaga / Orc Sergeant / Lord Elrond (voice)
Don Messick ... King Theoden / Easterling / The Mouth of Sauron (voice)
John Stephenson ... Gondorian Guard / Dwimmerlaik - The Witch-King of Angmar (voice)
Casey Kasem ... Meriadoc 'Merry' Brandybuck (voice)
Sonny Melendrez ... Peregrin 'Pippin' Took (voice)
Nellie Bellflower ... Eowyn / Dernhelm (voice)
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

Taglines:

A Story of Hobbits. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA | Japan

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 May 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El retorno del rey See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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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. Many Tolkien fans agree that Bakshi's film was a more mature and detailed adaptation of Tolkien's stories. See more »

Goofs

Many names of locations and characters are mispronounced: Gorgoroth as Gorogoroth, Minas Tirith as Mine-as Tirith (instead of Me-nas), Cirith Ungol as Sirith Ungol (insteaf of Kirith), Smaug as Smog (instead of Sma-ug), Sauron as Soron (instead of Sow-ron), Lebennin as LebEnnin (instead of LEbennin). See more »

Quotes

Gandalf: You cannot do this!
Lord Denethor: Nay, nay, soon all shall be burned. The West has failed, it shall go up in a great fire and all shall be in it. Ash, ash and smoke blown away on the wind!
Gandalf: All shall not be ended! Théoden's forces are on their way!
Lord Denethor: [laughs] Ride and despair! Ride and despair... didst thou think that the eyes of the White Tower were blind? I have looked inside my palantír.
Peregrin 'Pippin' Took: What is that?
Gandalf: A palantír. The stuff of wizards. A crystal ball to see the future.
Lord Denethor: I have seen more than thou knowest Grey ...
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in The Whore of the Rings (2001) See more »

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User Reviews

 
This is actually painful to watch...
16 April 2005 | by myopichobbit29See all my reviews

First of all, I'd like to express how much I love The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Tolkien was a genius. Peter Jackson did a great job on the films, I think. But Rankin-Bass, however, did not.

SPOILERS

The thing that bothered me a lot in this movie was the music. It was annoying, and ends up getting stuck in your head. Right now I'm trying to get rid of the one about Frodo's Nine Fingers. The animation is awful. There were also several elements of the story that bothered me, in animation, and in plot. For example, why did Elrond have a beard? Elves don't have beards. They are clean-shaven, always. Why did Merry and Pippin meet on the Pelenor DURING the battle? Where are Legolas and Gimli? What's with Denethor? The orcs looked much too top-heavy to be able to walk. The Nazgul were terrible. (They were on flying horses.) Denethor was bad, as well, as he just looked like a crazy old man with a back problem. He didn't look strong at all, as he was portrayed in the books and the recent film by Peter Jackson. Gollum looked as if he were pregnant, and sounded like a guy clearing his throat. And Sam's frequent exclamations of, "Oh, my God!" and "Lord, help me!" were not true to the books. (Although Tolkien was a Christian and so am I, the phrases should not have been in the movie.) And the battering ram, Grond? The thing looked as if strangely colored drool was coming out of its mouth rather than fire.

This was overall the worst adaptation of anything I have ever seen. It was, truly, painful to watch.

No, really, I was writhing in agony. Good thing the library rents out tapes for free.


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