The Lord of the Rings Reviewed

     I know I promised to put up a post about The Lord of the Rings movie series a while back, but I never got around to it, here it is though.
     So I spent about eleven and a half hours at the beginning of last month watching the three movies that make up The Lord of the Rings movie. Why was I watching the movie anyways? well a good friend said I should buy them if I ever saw them at resale shops, and I did that, then after things happened between myself and this friend I decided to watch the videos on my own, the plan had been to watch them together. I watched the videos on my laptop, wearing earbuds, if that matters at all.
     There were several things I didn't like about the movie, and I'll get to each in due time. I can't say so much as that they will be listed in order of annoyance, or any type of order at all.
     Sound levels/volume. So maybe this one was my fault, wearing earbuds and all, but I couldn't stand how the sound people, on all three parts, did such a terrible job with the levels. it's one thing to have music that swells, it's quite another to have music that wants to blast out your ear drums immediately follow by quite whispers, which weren't even whispers, it's just the volume level on the conversations were so low that they sounded like whispers. I'm trying to watch a video, I don't really want to have to be changing the volume every five minutes so I can hear things,and not get bloody ears, ya know. I liked the music, it had a nice full orchestra sound, very fitting to the movie, but the flux in the volume was just too much.
     Length. Seriously nine hours for one movie, tooooooo loooong. I must have watched some special features to get up to eleven hours, but from what I recall each of the three parts were three hours each. I think had they condensed the movie, and made it three hours long, instead of nine hours they might have been on to something. I don't want to spend an entire day just watching one movie. To the people out there saying it's a trilogy or whatever, you can't only watch one of the three parts, and you can't start at any part but part one. Unlike toy story, which has three movies, The Lord of the Rings has just one very long movie, broken down into three parts. You can watch any one of the Toy Story movies and not be wondering who people are, or what happens at the end, they are all self contained movies, with characters spread thought the three films. In The Lord of the Rings, if you don't start with part one, you have no idea who anybody is in part two, or three, you have no idea what is going on, why there is a party of people, elves, and dwarfs traveling together, what they are trying to accomplish. When I finished watching the first movie of the three I remember being like, WHAT, when the credits started rolling, the movie hadn't ended, I didn't know what happened, I was forced to waste another three hours, and then find that it still didn't end, couldn't stop watching, and had to watch another three hours. From a marketing perspective this was very well played, hook people with part one, and then force them to come to the theaters twice more to find out what happens.
     Special Effects. This was a nine hour movie, one would think that with the budget they must have had for a nine hour movie they could have gotten some sweet special effects, but not so much. Admittedly I don't know when this movie was put out, so I don't know what technologies they all had, but there were only a few spots where I felt like the special effects were overly fantastic. Like when the "evil" wizard, as if there are good wizards, fell off his tower, the camera falling after him as he tumbled through the air was pretty sweet. I enjoyed the entire sequence with Gandolf and the fire breathing dragon, from the bridge breaking, to the tail wrapping around Gandolf's foot and pulling him off the edge, to the falling with Gandolf fighting the beast, that was impressive. The part with the tree people destroying the bad guys orc making whatever it was was pretty good too, though I do wonder how the trees could see where the holes in the ground were when it was all covered with swirling dirty water.
     Battle scenes. There are armies of thousands of Orcs, hundreds of men on horses, and most battle scenes happen in a distance, and when they are close shots they cut so fast between different people that you never see any sword play. I have honestly seen better sword battles on youtube, made by people with no budget that what The Lord of the Rings had. I think in the final part of the movie they finally started getting it right with the battles. There was actually some scenes where you could watch and actually follow an entire fight. It's like the directors on the first two didn't realize that a battle is nothing more than a myriad of small fights, and is best conveyed in such fashion, showing lots of small battles between two or three assailants. When there is a screen full of people fighting you can't follow anything, there is too much information to try and take in and process, when it's scaled down to a smaller fight you can process much easier and get a feel for the entire battle. Plus it's a lot more impressive. I would rather see a few guys with sword play, than an entire field of men where you can't make anything out, other than one side wining or losing.

     When the movie finally ended, I can say I was happy with the ending, the lose ends were all tied up, they didn't leave any strings hanging, and there wasn't anything left to wonder about, so they got that right.