Friday, December 17, 2004

The King Returns (Again)

Warning: High Geek Content

I eagerly await the arrival of my Return of the King extended edition DVD from While I enjoyed the film, as well as the first two installments, I did have a few problems with the theatrical version. Everything after the battle of Pelennor Fields feels badly rushed and compressed. Also, the more I think about the way Peter Jackson uses the Army of the Dead, the more it bothers me. If all Aragorn had to do was bring this indestructible green horde to Minas Tirith, then why did the Rohirrim even bother showing up. Upon further reflection, having the Dead save the day by showing up at Pelennor Fields in my view cheapened the battle. In just a few minutes, Return goes from being a gripping, dramatic portrayal of a battle against overwhelming odds to a George Lucas movie. Besides, what was the point of dealing with the Corsairs when the Dead didn't need ships to get to Minas Tirith.

Anyway, my hope is that the extended version of ROTK will fill in some of these gaps. The omens so far are positive. Jonathan Last of the Weekly Standard was far less enamored of the theatrical edition of Return than I was, yet his review of the extended version is both entertaining and positive:

Return of Return of the King

(Warning: minor spoilers)

I'll post my own thoughts on the extended edition of Return after viewing.


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