I Feel Little Fellowship with these Characters
SIngli6 - wrote on 10/12/14
The extravagance and scope of Middle-earth, the fantastical realm first conceived by J. R.R. Tolkien in the 30's and finally realised on the big screen by Peter Jackson at the dawn of a new millennium, has had a gargantuan impact on contemporary literature and film. Take any epic fantasy book series produced in the last half century, and doubtless you will find strong thematic and stylistic strands of linking DNA with Tolkien's books; likewise, if you took any epic fantasy film (or television show) from the last decade, you would find echoes of Jackson's panoramas of forests, wastelands, and dramatic battles.
All this cultural significance and visual splendour considered, the 'Lord of the Rings' trilogy (in particular this installment) can be a bit boring. The main problem I have with it is that most of the characters lack personality. Frodo's sole characteristic seems to be shedding single tears, Samwise and the other Hobbits are latent homosexuals (not to imply Frodo isn't as well), the elves are smug and ponderous, and Viggo Mortensen's Aragorn is hailed as being a great leader more than he ever is shown to be one. The only characters who really interest me are Gandalf, Saruman, Boromir, and Gollum... and I have a sneaking suspicion that is solely because I'm an enormous fan of the actors who portray them. Nevertheless, you can't be a cinephile and not have a healthy appreciation for this film, especially considering the love and effort that went into it.
The Extended Edition is slightly superior to the Theatrical Cut in that it features more world-building and fewer clumsily edited segments, but the characters see little improvement.