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22. Re: Out of the Blue Jan 11, 2013, 16:14 Scottish Martial Arts
1) That's not fully accurate. Tolkien states in the forward to the revised edition of the Lord of the Rings that his chief interest in composing The Silmarillion was "his own satisfaction" but that nevertheless he very much hoped to have it published. There was just never any publisher interest to do so in his lifetime, although he did spend the last four years of his life reworking The Silmariilion in preparation for publication after it having sat on the shelf since the thirties. When he died, his son finished that work so it could at last be published.

2) I don't see it that way. The Tolkien family was upper class to begin with. It's not as if Tolkien had a hard scrabble youth and made his fortune writing best selling fantasy novels, and now his son wants to ensure that the money keeps flowing so he can stay rich without having to work at it. Rather, I think he is motivated by a deep love of his father and a desire to share his father's work with any who will love it as he does.

As for sueing the studio, what is wrong about wanting the terms of a contract honored? Particularly, when someone is profiting off of, what you see as, a bastardization of your father's legacy? If you can't stop it from happening you might as well see to it that they pay you what they contractually owe you.

3) As for the films themselves, while they were loyal to the plot of the books, they were presented with all the subtlety of Michael Bay. Consider how the flight from the Shire was depicted: rather than creating an air of menace playing on what you don't know, Jackson shows you exactly why Gandalf never showed up to help Frodo, he let's you know what the black riders are, and rather than create a sense of being hunted, i.e. looking back to the last ridge and momentarily seeing a dark figure, he instead treats it as a cheap horror movie complete with lightening and frantic camera work. For a tale that was in many ways a reaction against modernity and industrialism, two things which living through World War I caused Tolkien to view with suspicion if not outright distaste, it seems remarkably in poor taste to make the movie that was made. Likewise, I think Jackson, while clearly having spent many skill points on Tolkien Lore, did not have a very firm grasp of the themes that Tolkien was exploring. Since we're on the subject of WWI, consider how the Hobbits were depicted: Frodo, Pippin, and Merry were, in the books, country gentlemen cast into terror and war, much as Tolkien and his friends were in 1914. Notably, for Tolkien, by 1918, all but one of his friends was dead. Likewise, Sam was the English commoner, now soldier, loyally following his officer into machine gun fire at the Somme, a battle in which Tolkien led such men. Jackson, instead of exploring class sensibilities and how members of each class responded to the horrors of the battlefield, turns Pippin and Merry into comic relief and gives the Sam/Frodo relationship homosexual overtones. At any rate, I don't have any trouble seeing how Christopher would dislike the films.
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