Monday, February 4, 2008

Getting Frodo safely to Rivendale

I just have a quick comment. I have watched the movies but never read the books. In the movies, they made Liv Tyler's part out to be pretty significant. The first appearance she made was when Frodo was stabbed by the knife of the enemy. In the book, however, it was days after he was stabbed before they were saught after to be saved, and it was by no female. I was wondering if anyone could tell me if her character plays a significant role in the book or if it was all just made up for the sake of a "good" movie plot? Also, why all the inconsistencies with the book to the movie? Wouldn't you think if you were making a movie based on a book it would be a little more accurate? Any thoughts?

10 comments:

Danae said...

I have not seen the movies nor read the books, but you said it was days after he was stabbed that he was saved in the book (I don't think I've gotten there yet). Perhaps in making the movie, it was a way to speed things up. And adding a female would maybe create some diversity considering almost all of the book's characters are male.

Danae said...

So I hear there's a love story in the movie between Aragorn and the female, which obviously would not have worked if she were a he. Perhaps this was to attract a larger female audience?

td2985 said...

I think there are a few reasons why Arwen takes on a more significant role sooner in the movies.

First, it introduces the love interest of Aragorn fairly early and sets the stage for a few of the later scenes that reference some of the mythology (Tolkien also does this with the story about Beren and LĂșthien).

Second, Glorfindel, though possessing great power, is not a major character or even integral to the plot outside of the one appearance. Adding such a minor character in the movies at such a critical point in the story who is never heard from again doesn't work well in the 3 hour time frame alloted for the movie. It's easier give that responsibility to a different character, one that is more important to the story, so to introduce them earlier and make their importance obvious.

Jacob Carlson said...

I agree with td2985. Glorfindel has his 15 seconds of fame, and 15 seconds is a lot of time in a movie to waste.

Also, this is an obscure observation on my part, but the movie may be picking up on something in the books: Aragorn speaks fondly of Rivendell in the books...a little too fondly, if you ask me. He could be hinting at his affection for Arwen while they are travelling. So, instead of having Aragorn whining about Rivendell (aka Arwen, wink, wink) during their travels, Peter Jackson just had Arwen show up, removing all doubt from the viewers' minds.

I don't really have any proof for this, but it's a neat connection.

David Le said...

i think it was to attract a larger a female audience along with that "Girl Power" movement that came out at the end of the 20th century. She was alongside what Xena Warrior Princess, and many other Head Action Female Figures in Movies as of Late. The character of Glorfindel was probably not even significant enough to be introduced in the movie since I didn't even recall a person named Glorfindel and realized how integral he was in just that one part in FOTR.

Eachus24601 said...

When was the last time an action movie didn't have the damsel in distress? Even though the movie is about the destruction of the world and the "One-Ring" I think Arwen is added to increase the urgency and tension along with adding a personal interest in Aragorn's need to push on.

joe donaldson said...

Peter Jackson originally had Arwen even showing up at Helm's Deep in the movie to keep the Aragorn interest on screen, but the rumor hit the internet and fans quickly shot it down- Tolkien never mentions Arwen throughout the story (once or twice maybe), but in the appendixes behind ROTK, he reveals the whole romance- why even bother if its not in the actual story?

Mike Pilato said...

For me it would have much more exciting if the movie followed the book in this particular scene. The point was that Frodo made it the Ford of Bruinen by himself; of course on the back of Glorfindel's horse. Frodo showed his strength when he threatened the Black Riders at the Ford, and if that was in the movie it would have displayed Frodo as more heroic. In my opinion that is what Tolkien intended in the book.

Megan Becker said...

I agree with Mike's previous comment. I was kind of discouraged after I read this part in the book, since I have already seen the movie. I would have much rather the scene actually happening the way it did in the book on screen. It would have strengthened Frodo's character, instead of portraying him as someone who always has to lean on someone else for strength. This would have shown that he can do it on his own too!

erin smith said...

That's kind of what Frodo is though, right? A character who wants to do it on his own to protect those he knows, but (always) accepts the help that is given - usually because those who want to help give him no choice. Merry and Pippen insisted on coming with him through the Old Forest, he glady accepted Bombadil's housing, Maggot's dinner. And in the end, he relies on Sam who refuses to leave. Although I, like most other book-to-movie fans, would have preferred it the way of the book, I don't think the change is too detrimental to Frodo's character throughout the novel.