Counting Down My 20 Favorite Trailers: #3-‘The Lord of the Rings’

The Lord of the Rings is one of the most epic, if not the most epic, trilogies ever brought to the big screen. Based on a novel that would capture the imagination of minds around the world, young and old, these films are lightning in a bottle and have a minute chance of ever being replicated or matched in brilliance. And the teaser to announce the films’ arrival is one of the most magical I’ve ever seen. Take a look.

The first 50 seconds of the teaser is kind of good but it feels old. Like it’s totally under the format of 90s’ teasers. It is the teaser’s last 50 seconds that gives me chills just thinking about it. The music changes and suddenly, the magic that is The Lord of the Rings is revealed.

We see the main cast of characters, we get the dates for each film which arrive in succession after one another, and as the music continues to imbue the trailer with a sense of chill-inducing wonder, the words You will find adventure or adventure will find you appear on the screen as the teaser reaches its end.

This trailer is magical to me because I’ve lived with this movie my entire life. As a toddler I was seeing this film in my eyes before I even realized it. Now, as an adult, I can’t imagine how incredible it was to experience these movies in 2001, 2002, and 2003 for the first time but this trailer gives me an idea of just how magical a time it was.

I thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day.

2 thoughts on “Counting Down My 20 Favorite Trailers: #3-‘The Lord of the Rings’”

  1. Okay… I’m coming back out of the Covid cave for this one. 🙃

    I was right around 30 when these came out. And prior to this, there was a certain resignation that special effects just weren’t likely to be able to truly do justice to a serious fantasy thing like this. Maybe I should’ve been less jaded after Star Wars, but it’s easier to do spaceships than life like creatures. And Star Wars did have its creatures, but there was kind of a limit on it. All the other fantasy films up to that point had been kinda schlocky, and the studios just didn’t seem like they’d ever green light something this ambitious. Plus they had the animated ones… and while those were sorta ok, they were disjointed due to the rights weirdness between the people who did the old animated “Hobbit” (still better than Jackson’s version, sadly) and the ones who did the half-finished “The Lord of the Rings.” And even those left some limits, because we were still in a mindset in the states of “animated? Must be for kids, make sure there’s plenty of songs and a minimum of scariness.”

    And then this happened.

    I still remember the first time I saw the Balrog jump out and roar at them. And I was like, “daaaaaaaaaaaamn.” It was so brief in its scene, but it was the best rendition of a genuinely fearsome demon I’d ever seen. When I got DVDs, that was the scene I’d replay 20 times before I could talk myself into watching the rest of the movie. I have it on Blu Ray. It will likely have a similar result whenever I get around to watching them all again.

    Gollum was the best deeply acted CG creature ever done to that time… and probably still is. I’ll have to see if he still holds up… but I think he does. The sheer expressiveness and human-like quality of him, while still clearly being a twisted, misshapen creature, was really, really well done. (Andy Serkis read Trump tweets in Gollum’s voice on Colbert is epic.) I mean… I have trouble even thinking now of another clearly non human character that’s that well acted with that much range and still look right. Before LOTR, nothing had ever been done like that. Star Wars and Harry Potter still haven’t done it. I don’t know when we’ll see that again.

    And then there’s the epic battle scenes in both Two Towers and Return of the King. Some of the best medieval style battle scenes ever. “Alexander” and “Troy” come close. Not sure what else does. “Braveheart” absolutely does not. Very dramatic, but I’m sorry, the Scots were hundreds of years too late for woad, hundreds of years too early for kilts (and were wearing them wrong to boot), and did not fight effectively without armor or with sharpened wooden sticks with no metal spearheads. (And lets not even go into the ludicrous idea that William Wallace was secretly the father of King Edward III, given that Isabella of France was ten years old when Wallace was executed and didn’t even arrive in England until she was 12 or marry Edward II until she was 13, after Edward I was already quite dead.)

    It still amuses me to no end that Aragorn’s fight with the random troll in ROTK was originally shot with the idea that this was a humanoid manifestation of Sauron, and then they edited it out because they decided that Sauron fighting personally departed from the books too much. It also amuses me that this particular self restraint appeared to completely not occur to them in Hobbit. 😓

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, these movies are on a whole other level, even to this day. Even The Hobbit cannot seem to match the grandeur and perfection of these films. Funny fact; as a child I thought a really-skinny dude brought Gollum to life via prosthetics instead of being CGI…that’s how he real he looked! Even to this day, besides the apes in the recent ‘Planet of the Apes’ movies, he is the best full-CGI character I’ve seen.

      These movies are so good, in fact, that the extended editions are even great. In fact, I can’t seem to watch anything else but the extended editions because the extra content is so fun and riveting.

      I love these movies with a passion and even though I’ve seen them literally hundreds of times they never seem to get old.

      Like

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