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Minas Tirith Forums » New Line Cinema's Lord of the Rings » "Fictional Frontiers" Hobbit podcast
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tumhalad
Soldier of Gondor
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Over at TORN, they've posted a "Fictional Frontiers" podcast interview with Larrie Curtiss,, a "senior contributor" at theonering.net. Having gone through and listened to the interview, I am startled by the degree to which both Curtiss and Sohaib are unwilling to criticise Peter Jackson at all with regards to his adaptation of The Lord of the Rings. That is, despite the fact that both are willing to acknowledge that many of the rumours and casting decisions around the upcoming Hobbit adaptations (such as the presense of Legolas) may contribute to a possibly unfaithful reworking of the story in cinematic form.

I was disturbed by the tone of their conversation when they mention Jackson; whenever they want to make any kind of criticism they feel as though they are obliged to load it with caveats and fawning interjections. Neither, especially Sohaib, who I felt had more misgivings, seemed to be willing to voice their concerns strongly, or without risking "offence" to Peter Jackson.

I know that TORN has always been a dangerous site for the "purist" inclined like myself (as I recently discovered while discussing the introduction of Legolas there), but this fawning, irreverant attitude toward Jackson (and Boyens and Walsh) is surely unhelpful. Many of the posters on this site, I'm sure, are not afraid to criticise Jackson, not only for the egregious missteps he took in conceiving 'LOTR' on film, but also for the arrogant attitude displayed after the fact by himself and especially Boyens with regards to to the 'reasoning' behind their changes. (i.e. a general inclination to want to "improve" the story, by indiscriminately changing characters, affording them "journeysTM" etc)

Even if you somewhat like the movies (and they are entertaining in places, for sure) why should you be obliged to censor yourself, or provide fawning caveats, everytime you wish to make a criticism? It just seems to me that the kind of attitude on show in the podcast in unhelpful. Not that Jackson, Boyens et al. really care about remaining true to the book (that much is certain), but if we're going to be responsible fans of Tolkien's work, surely it is encumbent upon us not to be afraid to make criticisms where they are called for or where they are appropriate.

Here's the interview: judge for yourself:

http://www.theonering.net/torwp/2010/12/28/41401-torn-rounds-up-the-year-with-fictional-fronteirs/

From: Canberra, Australia | Registered: Dec 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
The White Hand
Guard of the Citadel
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It's just a sign of bad moderation, when the mods let someone get mobbed for expressing an unpopular opinion; it's like Bill Maher would just sit back and trumpet-smirk as three liberals would all jump on a token conservative-- and then pull rank to shut down the conservative when they answered back against the attacks.

[ 01-02-2011, 07:11 PM: Message edited by: The White Hand ]

From: Memphis | Registered: Nov 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
tumhalad
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Well yes, that's why I've basically left ToRN; the moderators there are a bunch of sycophantic, self-righteous "guardians" who don't like to let things get "out of hand" (i.e. they don't like anti-Jackson views to be expressed). Of course, ToRN has always been and play house of deluded film loving morons (wow, it feels good to say that. Not saying all people who like the films are 'morons', just some on ToRN in particular)and probably always will be.

But try listen to the interview, I guarentee you will be absolutely stunned by their sheer reluctance to criticise Jackson at all. It seems to me as though they just carry these rosy memories of their precious "faithfull" films around. I don't know what kind of mental processes are going on, but they must just deliberately suppress all the obviously non-faithfull garbage in the films, including, as you (White Hand) say, its rejection of Tolkien's "values". Personally I just think the films dumb everything down to such a degree that no particular worldview is evident at all; I'm not sure Jackson et al. have that kind of intellectual finesse. Alas, all this is lost on our faithfull Larry Curtiss of theonering.net.

It strikes me as weird, that in ToRN circles, to utter words against Jackson without caveats (and fawning, drooling, endlessly repeated ones at that) constitutes some kind of mortal sin. What happened to free-speach?

From: Canberra, Australia | Registered: Dec 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Tigranes
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quote:
What happened to free-speach?
Free speech is popular as long as people's emotions aren't hurt. Then suddenly, they're butt hurt and claim that their opponent was "abusing free speech". This is quite a popular sport in Europe nowadays. The entire "trials" of Geert Wilders and some other political minds were based on that. Free speech is a delicate concept and hardly practised at all outside of the US, Switzerland, Israel, and Iceland.

So basically, on most boards you're 'free' to say that PJ is a great man and such.

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The White Hand
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quote:
Personally I just think the films dumb everything down to such a degree that no particular worldview is evident at all; I'm not sure Jackson et al. have that kind of intellectual finesse.
I disagree; it's definite anti-hero arrogance, with a sledge-hammer-- and it doesn't take intellect to be pseudo-intellectual, just arrogance and zero character.
The lowbrow-audience was fooled by the violence and noise, while the highbrows are fooled by the token inclusion of Tolkien's morals, despite that they're distorted beyond recognition.

quote:
Free speech is a delicate concept and hardly practised at all outside of the US, Switzerland, Israel, and Iceland.
Mods can ban you for anything, and there's really nothing one can do about it, even if they're complete hypocrites.

[ 01-04-2011, 12:08 AM: Message edited by: The White Hand ]

From: Memphis | Registered: Nov 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
tumhalad
Soldier of Gondor
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Yes, I think I agree with you, now that I've had time to think over it. The films are definitely suspicious of anything that reeks of "nobility".

There's less of that in the Hobbit, who knows what they'll do to Bard though.

From: Canberra, Australia | Registered: Dec 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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