Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Lord of the Rings - The Fellowship of the Ring / The Two Towers |
Actors: Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Viggo Mortensen, Bruce Allpress, Sean Astin
Director: Peter Jackson
Genres: Action & Adventure, Science Fiction & Fantasy
The first two films in Peter Jackson's landmark Middle Earth trilogy.
Don't cheat yourself, this is not the edition to own
a1 | 10/12/2003
(1 out of 5 stars)
"First of all, these are not the kind of movies you buy in fullscreen. They were shot too beautifully to have the edges cut off. Peter Jackson the director made full use of the entire frame in many extreme closeups that do not translate well to a fullscreen cut. Also, the fullscreen edit of the two towers has some unfortunate mistakes that leave important visual references off the screen. Note that the 2-pack widescreens are the same price.Secondly, these are the theatrical release editions. If you like these, then there is only more to like in the extended editions, and more of Tolkien's intended story. The extended editions are aptly named as they are not your typical indulgent "director's cut", in which scrapped scenes are heedlessly tossed back in here or there and resold to make a quick buck. The extended editions of lord of the rings include fine scenes that add to the depth of the story, as well as reworked extended scenes from the theatrical version, all of which were only left out because of contractual time restraints.I see no reason why you'd choose these abbreviated, visually truncated versions to own and cherish when you can have the movies as they were intended for about ten bucks more."
Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring and Two Towers
A. Ross | New Zealand | 06/28/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Peter Jackson's first part of the collossal LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy is nothing short of a brilliant masterpiece, with incredible SFX, great characters, and staying true to J.R.R Tolkien's story while altering some of the book's elements to make it more suitable for film.
Deeply rooted in the fantasy genre, Fellowship of the Rings sees a young Hobbit Frodo Baggins inherit a powerful mystical ring from his cousin Bilbo Baggins. The ring, worn by the Dark Lord Sauron, has been passed down through many people until it reaches Bilbo. The mighty wizard Gandalf and a troop of dwarfes, elves and hobbits set out on a journey to destroy the dangerous ring by casting it back into the lava of Mt. Doom. But of course, there are bad guys, in the form of Saruman the White, played with relish by the brilliant Christopher Lee and his army of Orcs and Ringwaiths.
Director Peter Jackson (The Frighteners) has taken Tolkein's story and molded it into the perfect fantasy adventure. Some characters that were ciphers in the novel have been elevated to main characters, and while some purists may be upset over the loss of some characters, Jackson does do service to the story's originality. And the result? In a Hollywood summer of dissapointments, Fellowship was the standout, one of those rare films that come along like THE MATRIX that remind us of why we like movies in the first place. In comparison to that other cinema-changing trilogy known as STAR WARS, this is possibly the biggest competition George has ever come against. This, more than the recent SW prequels, wins out for it's action and acting. The fantastic casting of Christopher Lee, Ian McKellen and Elijah Wood are inspired. It's a sign that the actors have done their job when you stop saying Ian McKellen and start calling him Gandalf. As to wether the next chapter, THE TWO TOWERS will be even better is debatable, but since the whole trilogy was filmed as one big movie, the stunning film-making should continue and for once, an event rare these days, the sequel looks better than this one.In a film as ambitious as this, all the key elements are in place, the masterful storytelling, Jackson's brilliant visionary direction, superb acting (especially Ian McKellen as Gandalf and Elijah Wood as Frodo), incredible visual effects and the wealth of imagination from Tolkien's extraordinary tome. The supporting cast is great too, with John Rhys- Davies as Gimli the dwarf, Sean Bean as Boromir and Orlando Bloom as Legolas. The best facet about the whole thing is that it's so real that you really think that all this happened long ago. And that, more than anything else is a bonifide sign that this is not only one of the greatest cinema acheivements ever, but it's now entered into the cultural zeitgeist. The film takes us where we've never been before, Tolkein's world of Wizards, elves, ringwaiths, orcs and all the other imaginative creatures on display are a thrill to watch. For such a huge scale, the use of CG is of course neccesary, and like STAR WARS, every incredible vista is truly breath-taking and the visuals are incredible, utilising state-of-the-art technology to create entire landscapes, creatures and battles. The most outstanding scene, where our intrepid fellowship travels into the mines of Mordor is a fantastic tour-de-force of incredible movie magic. The seamless blend of FX and amazing cinematography is absolutly breath-taking. Howard Shore's brooding score adds another layer of excellence to the myraid of adventurous escapism. There are problems; the film may not sit well with purists and the ending feels somewhat of an anti- climax after the climactic Mordor, but we all know that the real battles are yet to come. This is a film that takes you far beyond your imagination. For people who managed to hold off the temptation to but the first DVD release, this platinum series "extended" edition is worth the wait. Discs 1 and 2 have a unique version of LOTR with over 30 minutes of cut footage incorporated into the film and new music scored by Howard Shore. The extended scenes range from breath-taking ( More views of Lothlorien) to perfuctonary (Bilbo's introduction). But for the most part, the added half hour is fascinating stuff for affeciandos, and while the re-instated scenes slow the pace sometimes, it fills in the gaps and makes for an even more fascinating experience. Also included are four feature-length audio commentaries by director and writers, the design team, the production team, and the cast featuring more than 30 participants.The second part to Peter Jackson's collosal LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy is even more visually impressive than FELLOWSHIP, with new characters including King Theoden, Eomer, Grima Wormtounge and the ancient Treebeard. This time around, the fellowship has parted into three groups; Frodo and Sam force Gollum to take them to the black gate at Mordor and Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli search for Merry and Pippin. And the Istari Gandalf returns as the more powerful Gandalf the White after defeating the Balrog. The story is more emotional than Fellowship, and the central characters are stronger presences than before. Jackson's excellent direction makes this one of the most amazing films ever made. From the march of the ents toward Isengard, Saruman unleashing his army to "Destroy the world of men", it all culminates in the incredible battle of Helm's Deep, an amazing action sequence where the seamless blend of CG and live-action builds up to a fantastic climax. Howard Shore's strident score encapsulates the very essence of Tolkein's thoughts and emotions. Ian McKellen turns in another great performance as Gandalf, but it is Viggo Mortensen as Aragorn who does most of the action here, and he's great. John Rhys- Davies and Orlando Bloom provide strong gravitas, plus with such a vast array of strong supporting actors, the combined strength of veterans like Benard Hill as Theoden and Christopher Lee as Saruman makes the story come alive. As strong as the characters are in TOWERS however, it's the CG-created Gollum that is the most amazing. Putting lame Jar-Jar and Harry Potter creatures to shame, Andy Serkis' performance helps the emotional presence of an essentially computer-generated character come to life. Treebeard and the Ents are fantastic examples of top-notch CG, but they say that the best effects are the ones you don't notice, which is true in this film. You are so focused on the story, the fleshed-out characters and the spirit of Tolkein's tome coming to life that the CG is simply assisting the tale. This is a film which you have to watch at least three times to fully appreciate all the effort that went into making a true masterpiece. I can't wait for RETURN OF THE KING..."
The first two-thirds of a masterpiece
E. A Solinas | MD USA | 08/24/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Lord of the Rings" has ceased to be just a movie, and is now a global phenomenon on the scale of Star Wars. However, "Fellowship of the Ring" and "Two Towers" are not only two of the richest, most outstanding movies out there, but also two of the best adaptations of a book."Fellowship" opens in the idyllic Shire, where the eccentric Bilbo Baggins (Ian Holm) and his nephew Frodo (Elijah Wood) live in something like peace. When Bilbo suddenly departs in the middle of a massive birthday party, he leaves Frodo all his possessions -- including a golden ring that makes its wearer invisible. But the wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen) has started to suspect that Frodo's ring may be the One Ring, a nearly indestructable receptacle of the Dark Lord Sauron's power. He sends Frodo to Rivendell, where it is decided that the Ring will be destroyed in Mount Doom, in the heart of Sauron's land of Mordor. So a band of Elves, Men, Dwarves and hobbits vow to accomany Frodo -- but the journey is more dangerous than any of them could imagine, with orcs attacking them, and a rogue wizard Saruman (Christopher Lee) who wants the Ring at any cost."Two Towers" picks up where "Fellowship" left off, with Frodo and Sam (Sean Astin) struggling through Mordor, followed by the sinister Gollum (Andy Serkis), a slave to the Ring. Frodo, touched by pity for Gollum, strikes a strange deal with him. Elsewhere, Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen), Legolas (Orlando Bloom), and Gimli (John Rhys-Davies) are chasing the band of Uruk-hai that have kidnapped Merry and Pippin (Dominic Monaghan and Billy Boyd). But after Merry and Pippin are rescued by a strange treelike being, Gandalf unexpectedly returns from death as the more powerful White Wizard. He tells Aragorn that he must go to the kingdom of Rohan, one of the last free lands on Middle-Earth, and save it from Saruman. And in Mordor, Sam and Frodo are captured -- and Frodo begins to give in to the Ring.Few books have gained the devoted following that "Lord of the Rings" has, and few movies have the fans that the adaptations do. While "Return of the King" won't be released until next December, the first two parts are beautifully made and there's no reason to think the third won't be the best of all. They have "classic" written all over them in permanent ink.Elijah Wood is perfectly cast as Frodo Baggins. With his performance, we see Frodo transform from a carefree innocent to a tormented soul whose sanity is slipping. Sean Astin is equally good as Samwise Gamgee, Frodo's best friend (and gardener). Astin never plays Sam for laughs; he's earnest and sweet from his first scene on. Dominic Monaghan and Billy Boyd (both very underrated) are also wonderful, especially in "Two Towers" when their characters become deeper and more serious. Ian McKellen gives a spot-on performance as the wizard mentor Gandalf, whose grandfatherly manner hides powerful depths; Sean Bean and Viggo Mortensen are excellent as a tormented warrior and a reluctant king; Christopher Lee is delightful as Saruman; Orlando Bloom and John Rhys-Davies (who also doubles as the tree shepherd Treebeard) are fantastic as an Elf and a Dwarf who gradually become friends. Bernard Hill, Hugo Weaving, Liv Tyler, Karl Urban, Cate Blanchett and Miranda Otto also give amazing performances.One of the biggest Oscar cheats was the lack of acknowledgement of Andy Serkis's Gollum. Gollum is breathtakingly realistic, down to every wrinkle, stringy hair, and pointy tooth. And Serkis's performance really brings this wretched, withered thing to life -- even makes us feel sorry for him sometimes. WETA's CGI-work can be found all through both movies -- the destruction of Isengard by the Ents, the avalanche, the river sweeping away the hideous Ringwraiths.Jackson's method of filmmaking is perfectly suited (which is funny since splatter-gore was his first style). His camera swoops and dives like a live thing during battles like Helm's Deep, then does close-ups of actors' faces. The landscapes (in New Zealand) are incredibly lovely, and Jackson takes plenty of opportunities to use sweeping shots of mountains, trees, fields, rivers and forests. Jackson and Fran Walsh also managed to do something that seemed impossible -- write a story that is more or less faithful to the books, but that is also accessable to people who haven't read the books. (In other words, don't worry if you don't know what a hobbit is)"Lord of the Rings" is not just a good adaptation, it's also just an incredibly well-done movie. Wonderful acting, amazing special effects, and battle scenes that put war movies to shame. An easy five stars."
These movies are towering epics of stunning proportions!
Distant Voyageur | Io | 08/29/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"No amount of movie-making technology could ever be able to adapt J.R.R. Tolkien's immortal novels to the big screen and succeed immensely until Peter Jackson tackled the giant and complex worlds and storylines of these three heart wrenchingly awesome novels. The special effects combined with the epic battle scenes conglomerate into what are easily the best movies ever made in movie history and will ultimately go down as the greatest achievements in Peter's career and the best movies of all time! What also makes these movies so incredibly awesome is their chilling similarities to what is going on in the real world right now as I write this review. Such examples are corruption in governments gaining power, and the scattering of different sectors of society into leaderless clusters enshrouded in doubt and despair, and also of the conflicts going on in many areas of the world and how it's affecting everyone in it and also of the sacrifices that true heroes make. Both of these movies are absolute must-haves. THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING: The beginning of the dangerous epic adventures begins in a Hobbit village called The Shire it's where it all began when the eccentric Bilbo Baggins resides and is preparing for a massive birthday celebration but also possesses a ring of great power and of great evil that he recovered when Gollum lost it in his cave many years back. During taht time, Bilbo departs The Shire and leaves all of his possessions to his nephew Frodo Baggins. While at the Shire, Frodo, along with the famous wizard Gandalf the Grey, examines the ring and then realize the dangerous effects of it's power. Sauron, the Dark Lord who created the ring in the Heart of Mordor, was awakening from dormancy and his ring wraiths are now on a hunt for it and to return it to Sauron who plans on enslaving all of Middle Earth. Frodo meets with Samwise Gamgee, Meriodock Brandybuck, and Peregrine Took. From there, it's a dangerous adventure as they go on their extrmeely treacherous journey as they try to get to Mordor to destroy the ring. Eventually they meet Aragorn, Boromir, Legolas, and Gimli as the nine characters formed "The Fellowship of The Ring". Worse yet, the fellowship face even more danger when a renagade wizard named Saruman The White, betrayed Middle Earth and is now seeking the ring as well with the help of Uruk-Hai. THE TWO TOWERS: This stunning second installment in the series builds upon the awesome epic nature to create an even greater masterpiece. In this one, Frodo Baggins sets out on his own along with Samwise Gamgee who both encounter a hideous creature named Gollum, who was disfigured by the Power of The Ring, and then Gollum guides them as they venture closer towards Mordor. Meanwhile, Gimli, Legolas, and Aragorn, set out as they travel to the home of King Theoden who is badly aged by being enslaved to Saruman's spell. The dangers of Sauron and Saruman is much greater as Saruman has built a HUGE army of tens of thousands of Uruk-Hai and set out for a fortress named Helm's Deep where thousands are hiding out. The first movie was stunningly beautiful and this one is also but also is alot more terrifying as the battle scenes are among the most brutal in movie history. "Two Towers" seems to run very close to home as it runs almost parallel to the dangers of what world society in the real world is facing right now (Terrorism, corrupt officials, greedy corporations). There is so much on this movie that there isn't enough space with this review to give out. This is the best movie ever made and is only the surface of the cataclysmic events taht are to take place in the LOTR finale "Return Of The King". A few complain about the changes to some story elements in the books when put on the movie screen and they say it ruined ?The Two Towers?. I completely object to them. This is even better than ?The Fellowship?. These two movies are jsut an extremely powerful movie combo and are absolutely essential needs for everyone. What's also great about them is that for such violent movies, there is relatively little in these and it makes them better. Even the music to these films is stunningly beautiful and goes very well with the tone of the movies. This is the pinnacle of movie-making in just about every way. Go and buy these today! They are indispensable!"