Hey, guys, well, I guess I’ll drop in my two cents about this flick as well. I came in with a lot of pre-conceived ideas of what was going to be in this film, based on the trailers I have seen and the book.
There are some things missing, especially from the trailers. Pretty much all of the dialogue from the four-minute theatrical preview that was on FOTR is not in the film. Also, the Ents are not given enough screen time, if you ask me. The only Ent that is named in the movie is Treebeard, so there is no mention of Quickbeam.
I was a bit suprised that PJ intercut the battle of Helm’s Deep with Merry & Pippin talking to Treebeard, but I guess 30 straight minutes of butt-kicking is a bit too much. I wish the Storming of Isengard would have been a bit more built up, like Helm’s Deep was, but it’s still cool. In fact, if you go back and watch the 4 minute preview, you can see Saruman when he runs to the window of Orthanc and realizes his fortress is being destroyed. The look on his face is priceless!
There is also a bit of tension when everyone thinks Aragorn falls off a cliff and dies after the Warg attack, but that’s okay. I guess people who haven’t read the book might think he really buys the farm that early. The Arwen/Elrond/Galadriel stuff is great. I wish there had been more Gandalf/Saruman in this movie, but I think PJ is saving that for ROTK. This is really Aragorn’s show, as it shows him trying to be a real leader, even if he pisses off Theoden in the process. Gimli is great fun (best line “Don’t tell the Elf!”).
But, the real suprise for me is Gollum. This little guy can act. Andy Serkis and Weta digital turn in a performance that makes Yoda look as exciting as a game of Pong. The scenes where Gollum is arguing with himself (think of Willem Dafoe’s mirror scene in Spider-Man) really sent chills up my spine. The hurt he conveys when he thinks “master” has deceived him really touches a nerve.
Other random thoughts The scenes with Faramir needed to be cut a bit. By the time Faramir decided to let Frodo go, I wasn’t interested anymore. I wanted to get back to Helm’s Deep. Also, the Nazgul aren’t as terrifying in this movie, but again, maybe PJ is saving that for the Pelennor fields in ROTK. I think someone else mentioned it, but the movie ends right after the battle of Helm’s Deep, although Gollum alludes to Shelob, saying something like, “SHE can take care of them!”
Having said all that, this movie is amazing. As good as the first one, but more entertaining. I don’t think any fans of FOTR will be disappointed. I can’t wait to see it again, and again, and again…