"Fixing" RotK - Complications Ensue
Complications Ensue:
The Crafty TV and Screenwriting Blog




Baby Name Voyager graphs baby name frequency by decade.

Social Security Administration: Most popular names by year.

Name Trends: Uniquely popular names by year.

Reverse Dictionary Search: "What's that word that means....?"

Facebook Name Trees Match first names with last names.


Archives

April 2004

May 2004

June 2004

July 2004

August 2004

September 2004

October 2004

November 2004

December 2004

January 2005

February 2005

March 2005

April 2005

May 2005

June 2005

July 2005

August 2005

September 2005

October 2005

November 2005

December 2005

January 2006

February 2006

March 2006

April 2006

May 2006

June 2006

July 2006

August 2006

September 2006

October 2006

November 2006

December 2006

January 2007

February 2007

March 2007

April 2007

May 2007

June 2007

July 2007

August 2007

September 2007

October 2007

November 2007

December 2007

January 2008

February 2008

March 2008

April 2008

May 2008

June 2008

July 2008

August 2008

September 2008

October 2008

November 2008

December 2008

January 2009

February 2009

March 2009

April 2009

May 2009

June 2009

July 2009

August 2009

September 2009

October 2009

November 2009

December 2009

January 2010

February 2010

March 2010

April 2010

May 2010

June 2010

July 2010

August 2010

September 2010

October 2010

November 2010

December 2010

January 2011

February 2011

March 2011

April 2011

May 2011

June 2011

July 2011

August 2011

September 2011

October 2011

November 2011

December 2011

January 2012

February 2012

March 2012

April 2012

May 2012

June 2012

July 2012

August 2012

September 2012

October 2012

November 2012

December 2012

January 2013

February 2013

March 2013

April 2013

May 2013

June 2013

July 2013

August 2013

September 2013

October 2013

November 2013

December 2013

January 2014

February 2014

March 2014

April 2014

May 2014

June 2014

July 2014

 

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Alex, I'm curious about your RotK change. Going back to the books, I've always felt that the denouement in the Shire was off, though I understood what Tolkein was trying to say about the soldiers coming home from the big war to a place that would forever feel a little smaller to them (and then effectively acting out the war in miniature). So I agree that dropping that whole section out would make for a more compelling story.

But what about the final ship out to the Western Lands? The sorrow in that ending makes me tear up when I read it (and did in the movie). Would you still jump ahead to that, or would you just end with the return to the Shire?
Me, I'd skip the ship to the West. That's elegy. My posse don't do elegy.

Seriously, the ship to the West is cool. But I would go out on the big emotional moment, which I think is the return to the Shire -- made bigger because of the (necessary) decision to ditch the Scouring of the Shire. I think I'd have them show up at the pub, and they get affectionately joshed for their weird costumes, and no one really cares what they were up to in the outside world, they're just glad to have them back. And Sam finally has the courage to talk to to Rosie, and what could be better than a pint at the pub, and maybe Frodo walks out of the pub and looks around at the Shire in the moonlight ... and smiles.

What more do you need after that? Tell me you're not crying already.

I guess the key point is that once Frodo comes home, his story is over. He has done what he needed to do. No jeopardy. No stakes. No opportunity / problem / goal worth mentioning.

And once the story's over, roll credits.

Labels:

7 Comments:

I suppose I was just too busy to comment on this when you made the original post. You say: "Because the whole reason they went on the adventure was to save the Shire just the way it is."

And the reason Lord of the Rings is a great book is because what they learned on the adventure was that this is *impossible.* War has consequences. Take away the consequences, and Lord of the Rings is just a neocon fantasy.

By Blogger Will Shetterly, at 1:19 PM  

Oh, while what I said was easy, I agree that the Scouring of the Shire presents enormous structural difficulties for a screenwriter. I understand why you and Jackson want to skip it.

But I think the battles could've been shortened a little, and then you'd have room for forty-five minutes to do the Scouring of the Shire and the ship to the west properly. Think of it as Act Three.

By Blogger Will Shetterly, at 1:24 PM  

I like the idea of just coming back to the Shire and settling down.

Or at the very least, they could have handled a lot of that with very short scenes with almost no dialogue. What if one day Frodo was just gone? And they all knew where he went. Like Good Will Hunting.

Then there'd be no need for that endless resolution.

In the theater when Sam said "But the story wasn't over yet" one dude groaned really loud and the whole audience laughed.

By Blogger Emily Blake, at 1:33 PM  

I'm torn. I really do like the new, simpler, bladder-friendly ending you suggest Alex, but Will makes a great point. The hobbits left the Shire as boys and came back older, scarred, world-weary men. Your ending captures that perfectly. But it shows war as having no consequences on those left behind.

So how about we skip the Scouring. No one likes that anyway, and if LotR is Tolkein's allegory for WWII, there was no invasion of mother England, just bombardment. I don't think it hurts your ending if they...

...show up at the pub, and are welcomed, but things are different. There are a few hobbits in uniform, while some swords and shields rest on a stand by the door. They aren't asked much about their journey because the residents of the Shire have their own war stories to tell of defending their homeland from bandits and armies passing through on the way south. Sam still talks to Rosie and Frodo still smiles alone, but with a tinge of sorrow at what's been lost.

By Blogger R.A. Porter, at 3:50 PM  

Well, that wouldn't be bad at all, RA.

If you want a grownup ending, RA's ending is excellent. A little more fantastickal, go with mine. Either way, I think go back to the Shire, have a brewski and a meaningful look, and then roll credits.

By Blogger Alex Epstein, at 7:05 PM  

My problem is that SAM is the hero of the third movie. Frodo is a whiny biatch (technical term).

By Blogger James, at 8:28 PM  

I think I'm reacting from my knowledge of the book, but I wouldn't much care for Frodo smiling at the end. Getting stabbed by the Ringwraiths and the burden of the One Ring had a permanent negative, dark effect on him. Yeah, your ending would fit into the Romantic telling of the epic story, but I like the idea that Frodo didn't just grow up, he was scarred, also, and would never be the same in a not so good way.

By Blogger The_Lex, at 4:00 PM  

Post a Comment

Back to Complications Ensue main blog page.



This page is powered by Blogger.