Oh, I was smitten by David Wenhem. Not only is he very handsome, but his portrayal of being wounded to the core by his cruel father was really moving. My couple of objections to him on seeing the movie the first time was that 1) he didn't look like how I imagined Faramir would look, and 2) I had a vague memory that in the book he was a more resolute character. Neither of those things are in Wenhem's control. I'm really glad I didn't re-read the books immediately before seeing the movies.
I LOVE Peter Jackson's LotR. Though there are lots and lots of things I would have done differently, I think the movies are epic and authoritative. Though it would have been fun to see Tom Bombadil, I was never bothered that he wasn't included. They're right, his is one story that wasn't strictly necessary to include in the Ring's story.
I think movie-Arwen is Fran Walsh's idea, and it's brilliant. The books sorely needed more significant, active women, besides Eowen all by herself. Movie-Arwen wasn't just this beautiful, ethereal elvish prop for Aragorn's story. she was much more interesting. And making her an amalgamation of her brothers was perfect. The movie didn't need more guys who'd show up for a few minutes, never to be seen again. People who'd never read the books, or who'd read them once years ago, would get them mixed up, "Wait, there's more of these guys, am I supposed to keep track of them?" Liv Tyler is very beautiful and looked the part. She's just kind of a weak actor.
I imagine that's why this Itaril character was created for the Hobbit movie. She fills out the female dimension, something that many girls agree is sorely missing the first time they read Tolkien's books.
I can't go on about these movies and have these conversations about the itty-bitty detailed comparison to the books, anywhere else in real life.
Edited to add another criticism of the movie, because I can't really do this elsewhere, I think the good-by scene at the end of RotK is probably baffling to people who haven't read the books. I think the music swells waay too much, they focus on Elija Wood's huge eyes uncomfortably too long, the whole thing is just over-wrought. However, I know they were trying to portray the epic, aching, bittersweet feeling that pervaded that goodby in the book, and I appreciate it. I cried when I finished reading the book; it felt like the world had ended. It was a tragic loss for the whole world that the Elves were leaving never to come back, that Aragorn and that world of Men was fading into the past.
So I know that's what they were trying to portray, and maybe it's impossible to translate that onto film.
Edited by journeymom - 7/18/12 at 9:22am