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Julie Carter

Interesting. I don't agree with you about the Jackson films, except perhaps for the Scouring. Yes, there were times when the dialogue was too sporty, and the surfing, well, I'd rather not continue to think of that. But I think the films captured the majesty, the horror, and the beauty of the books. Gimli is sadly adulterated, but I thought it worked otherwise.

Narnia, now, that's an interesting case. I enjoyed the film. I reread the book before going and noticed something odd. That book doesn't have details that stick in my head for long. Granted, most books don't. But even reading the book one night and going to the film the next, there were times when I wondered if this scene or that was in the book and I didn't remember. I knew certain things were wrong, and they bothered me because they seemed so arbitrary. In the LotR films, I understood completely why Jackson decided to discard Tom Bombadil, for example. But why in LWW leave out the teaparty? It was a small moment, but one that needed to be for me.

I was annoyed at the name change for Fenris Ulf until I did some research and learned that FU was actually a name change in itself. So that discrepancy makes sense. But some of the others were odd. I could be convinced about them, I think. I'm not so wedded to the idea of a film being a completely accurate representation of the book that I can't adjust to changes; but some of the tweaks in Narnia struck me as clumsy rather than clever.

The bombing is an example of the clever, I thought. The book just sort of pops you into the world without explaining why the Pevensies are in the country.

And, honestly, I should be so relieved they started with Lion and not the ghastly Nephew that I should forgive much.

Now if only they'd do quality film versions of Prydain, I'd be filled with childish glee.

I'm enjoying your blog very much.


Steve S

They couldn't possibly start with The Magician's Nephew--The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe is the one every other schoolkid in the country read. The Magician's Nephew is easily the worst of the series.

I didn't terribly dislike either Two Towers or Return of the King in terms of departures from the books, but I left Fellowship of the Ring amazed, which I didn't feel after either of the others even though I wanted to. The worst adaptations for me were all in Two Towers: Gimli becomes comic relief and the dwarf-tossing joke is repeated from the first movie; a random battle with Warg-riders is inserted because apparently Jackson decided the fucking Battle of Helm's Deep isn't a big enough action scene; Wargs aren't big mean wolves but furry quadrupedal trolls; and the worst, that Faramir actually gives in to the temptation of the ring and hauls Frodo back to Osgiliath before the stupid faceoff-with-flying-Nazgul bit for some reason changes his mind. Stupid. The whole point of Faramir was that he felt the temptation but NEVER actually acted on it, being everything Boromir, the father's favorite, should have been.

Julie Carter

You wouldn't think the publishers could start with Nephew either, but they do!

I had forgotten the problem with Faramir. That was a major, unwelcome, departure from the books for exactly the reason you mention.


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