5.7/10
3,675
58 user 14 critic

The Return of the King (1980)

Not Rated | | Animation, Action, Adventure | TV Movie 11 May 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
4,535 ( 1,194)

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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)
Theodore Gottlieb ... 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:

TV-G | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In The Lord of the Rings (1978), Theoden was played by Philip Stone. This year, Stone appeared in The Shining (1980), opposite Jack Nicholson, whose then-girlfriend was Anjelica Huston, daughter of John Huston, who plays Gandalf. The following year, Jack May played the part on BBC Radio. Huston directed May in The Man Who Would Be King (1975). See more »

Goofs

(at 9:20) The opening title card reads "The Return Of The King". Below it, the copyright line reads "RANKIN/BASS PRODCTIONS, INC. MCMLXXIX". The word "productions" is misspelled. See more »

Quotes

Frodo Baggins: Oh Sam, what have I said, what have I done?
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Crazy Credits

The end credits feature illustrations of landscapes from the film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in AniMat's Classic Reviews: The Flight of Dragons (2015) See more »

User Reviews

good considering the time crunch
15 October 2003 | by VoodooChickenSee all my reviews

I really LIKED the whip song!!!

Considering this was a made-for-TV ANIMATED movie back in 1980, Rankin-Bass did an okay job trying to make amends for Ralph Bakshi's failure. R-B was hired to take the entire finale of LOTR and squeeze it down to under 90 minutes suitable for TV. By comparison, Peter Jackson spent over 90 million to make a 3 1/2 hour movie with a PG-13 rating.

R-B made some tough, hard, and brave decisions to pick what would stay, what would go, and what needed to be changed. Purists should stick with the books, but when you consider that Tolkien himself couldn't tell his whole story within the book and had to include appendices, it really isn't necessary to include every minute detail on TV.

The book spent over 100 pages just wrapping up all the "lose ends" after the ring was destroyed. The quest for the ring was the main plot, not dealing with Saruman, not resolving Aragorn's and Arwen's love, not even dealing with Legolas' and Gimli's bond. While these plots didn't make it to the movie and that's a shame, they are not essential to the main story.

I'm not saying the movie was GREAT. I still chuckle when I think that the actual RETURNING OF THE KING took a five second cameo, I stand by Rankin-Bass if only to pick up Ralph Bakshi's pieces, even in vain.


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Details

Country:

USA | Japan

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 May 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Return of the King See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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