Hobbits and Elves and Wizards, oh my!

              Saturday, 22 September.  Up early today.  Sleep?  I don’t need no stinkin’ sleep!  Today is Frodo’s & Bilbo’s Birthday.  Today I celebrate by watching the entire extended version of TLOTR.  The Tuckborough Cinema began showing the 1st portion of the film at 0900.  I really like the film, especially the extended version as it includes several things left out of the theatrical version, which is still a good film.  Yes, the film is different from the book.  However, I think PJ did a few things better than Tolkien. Heretical, yes, but also true.    Watching the film was enhanced by my friend, Kim,  & his fiancée, Susan, watching with me from time to time.  They had never seen the extended version of the film previously.  Kim was very happy to see several scenes which had been left out of the theatrical version.    As is the rule for watching the entire film on one day, junk food & pizza were “back on the menu, boys!”    We finished up about 2100.  Yes, sad as usual, and happy as well.    I still have a hope of either seeing the entire extended version in a real cinema or on someone 60 inch HD TV.    Earlier in my stay I had shown them RINGERS in which I get mentioned in the credits for the material from the 60’s I gave the film makers.    In the doco the oft the comment that the ACE edition had been pirated or illegal is mentioned.  Apparently in 1993, only 28 years later, was this position upheld.  In 1968 I spoke with the person who was responsible for the Tolkien books at Houghton-Mifflin.  When asked about the ACE edition she said, “We blew it!”  At least at that time, even Houghton-Mifflin believed the ACE edition was legal.  In any case the expression “all publicity is good, even the bad” comes to mind.

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2 Responses to “Hobbits and Elves and Wizards, oh my!”

  1. Cliff Burns Says:

    We go from Tolkien and Mervyn Peake to the ersatz product-shifters like Robert Jordan, et all. Contemporary fantasy needs to shed its roots and come up with something original and new, not just renaming trolls “trollucs” and that crap. I agree Jackson did a terrific job with translating the books to the screen–the only people who dissed the films were those who walk around the house with the blinds drawn, pointy tips glued to their ears…

  2. The Wombat Says:

    G’day Cliff — I hope, the snows aren’t bothering you too much up there in Canada. 🙂 Just kidding. However, I couldn’t resist. I really do know something about Canadian geography & climate. Where in Canada do you live? — I agree, that too much fantasy is poorly warmed over Tolkien. I normally don’t do very much fantasy at all. There are a few exceptions. — I did enjoy the Potter books, but more for their coming of age story as anything else. — I just read 3 books by Carrie Vaughn about a DJ who also happens to be a werewolf. It appealed to me as I think werewolves have gotten a lot of bad [and undeserved] press. Have you read “Operation Chaos” by Poul Anderson? — On the whole I prefer space opera: David Weber, Louis McMaster Bujold, David Drake, etc. —
    Terry Prachett does a different take on fantasy. I have read a few of the Discworld books, enjoyable but not really my cup of tea. — When I meet folk who haven’t read Tolkien, I tell them to see the extended version of TLOTR first and then read the books. However, I also suggest they skip the intro. I really dislike it. The version in the 1st edition & the ACE edition is far superior. I have to scan it in one day. I then tell them to read Chapters 1,2 & 3 then skipping to Chapter 9. This is essentially what PJ does [and the BBC condensed version]. They can go back and read about Tom B. However, it is these chapters that often bog down a reader and they leave. — Will you be coming south of the border with all those expensive C$ for World Fantasy Convention? Our SF club is hosting it this year.

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