The Return of the King (1980) (part 5 of 8)

Sam finally finds Frodo being threatened by an Orc, who’s easily dispatched. Sam rushes to Frodo, and they have a tearful reunion. If I were immature and childish, I’d remark on how oddly creepy the scene is, given Frodo’s lack of a shirt, but to be brutally frank, I know exactly how the scene was intended in the novel and films, and I won’t pretend to be clueless just for the sake of a cheap laugh.

Caption contributed by Ed

“Okay, I’ll save your life, just so long as you promise to start screwing my wife—Wait, no, the other way around! The other way!”

Though to be fair, it does come off pretty damned weird here. At least in the live action version, you had good acting, and a reasonable pace. Here, it just drags on, as Frodo rambles on and on about how all hope is lost because the ring is gone, and for some reason, Sam doesn’t just immediately clue him in.

Sure, this is so a dramatic reveal can happen, but given that they’ve manages to stretch out maybe one or two chapters from the book over about 36 minutes so far, I think I have the right to bitch about it!

Jesus Christ, say what you will about the live-action version being too long, but at least the fatigue only kicks in towards the end! This is a 97-minute movie, and so far, as pertains to the hobbit stuff, they’ve taken over a third of it to cover what Peter Jackson was able to knock out in less than five minutes!

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Ed Harris

A fan of less than great cinema since childhood, Ed divides his time between writing scripts, working an actual paying job and subjecting himself willingly to some of the worst films society has produced.

Multi-Part Article: The Return of the King (1980)

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