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NF-Lee's Gildor and Frodo

Rivendell 6 ~ ‘Ready to go home’, plus jan-u-wine's "Soon".

Posted on 2008.10.22 at 08:12
Tags: , , , ,
~*~



The FOTR sequence screencapped below, the scene in which Sam argues persuasively that they ought to be heading home, is original to the film. It has no direct book equivalent. I decided to use a book scene from the opening of the Ring Goes South to go with it, even though the film scene takes place before the Council, not after it.

The connection I see between the book scene and the film scene is a strong sense of Frodo’s reluctance. On the terrace in FotR, Frodo is resistant to Sam’s urgings; he’s clearly reluctant to leave. I am not sure what the filmmakers meant to convey with this reluctance, but I have thought the reason two-fold. Because the film scene is set before the Council, I thought his unwillingness to dash off home expressed his reluctance to turn his back on a destiny that he felt in his bones was his, even if he did not yet know it. Also, I thought it was meant to pick up book Frodo’s reluctance to leave a place he so much enjoyed. The film’s Rivendell scenes don’t show the hobbits enjoying themselves that much, but in the book they experience their months in Rivendell as deeply refreshing: a tonic and a delight.

In the book, Frodo clearly loves staying in Rivendell, so of course he is reluctant to leave on that account. But, unlike film Frodo, in the book scene below he has already offered himself as Ring-bearer. He’s answered the call, but, while he doesn’t precisely regret making the offer, the enormity of what he has done is beginning to hit him. If Frodo is reluctant to leave Rivendell as a place of wonder and refreshment, he’s even more reluctant to leave knowing he’s going into toil and want and terror. All the endings he sees for himself, he says to Bilbo, are “dark and unpleasant”. Bilbo tries to assure Frodo that Elrond won’t send him and Sam off alone, which bucks Frodo up a little. When Gandalf tells him he thinks he will come, Frodo seems weak-kneed with relief and joy. So Frodo’s reluctance is again two-fold, but not identical.

One more note about the book scene. In Rivendell Pt. 4, I talked about the high regard in which Bilbo was held among the Elves of Rivendell. Typing out the book passage for this post, I have decided to modify that. The Elves might think well of Bilbo, but Gandalf’s remarks show that even they were unprepared for Bilbo’s and Frodo’s offers to take the Ring into Mordor. “If you want to know, the only real eye-openers, as you put it, were you and Frodo,” Gandalf informs Bilbo, “and I was the only one that was not surprised”.


The poem I have chosen for this post is jan-u-wine’s Soon. It was not written to this scene, but to the Field of Cormallen. Sam is watching recuperating Frodo sleep—which is what he did in Rivendell, watching over Frodo as he recovered from the Morgul wound—Sam’s thoughts full of home. Although it was not written as such, I think the poem captures beautifully the “inside” of film-Sam’s efforts to persuade Frodo to go home in the scene on the terrace. Sam’s images in Soon are so vivid and compelling, it’s as if he were willing them into Frodo’s head, so that the sight and sound and scent of the Shire, and the feel of being in his old haunts and going about his old routines, might make Frodo well and whole again.



~*~



Book scene.

At the end of the previous chapter, Frodo has just announced that he will carry the Ring to Mordor. Elrond accepts the offer—if Frodo has made it freely. Sam bursts in at that point, demanding that he be allowed to accompany Frodo. Elrond agrees to it. The excerpt below follows immediately after, the opening of the new chapter.


Later that day the hobbits held a meeting of their own in Bilbo’s room. Merry and Pippin were indignant when they heard that Sam had crept into the Council, and had been chosen as Frodo’s companion.

‘It’s most unfair,’ said Pippin. ‘Instead of throwing him out, and clapping him in chains, Elrond goes and rewards him for his cheek!’

‘Rewards!’ said Frodo. ‘I can’t imagine a more severe punishment. You are not thinking what you are saying: condemned to go on this hopeless journey, a reward? Yesterday I dreamed that my task was done, and I could rest here, a long while, perhaps for good.’

‘I don’t wonder,’ said Merry, ‘and I wish you could. But we are envying Sam, not you. If you have to go, then it will be a punishment for any of us to be left behind, even in Rivendell. We have come a long way with you and been through some stiff times. We want to go on.’

‘That’s what I meant,’ said Pippin. ‘We hobbits ought to stick together, and we will. I shall go, unless they chain me up. There must be someone with intelligence in the party.’

‘Then you certainly will not be chosen, Peregrin Took!’ said Gandalf, looking in through the window, which was near the ground. ‘But you are all worrying yourselves unnecessarily. Nothing is decided yet.’

‘Nothing decided!’ cried Pippin. ‘Then what were you all doing? You were shut up for hours.’

‘Talking,’ said Bilbo. ‘There was a deal of talk, and everyone had an eye-opener. Even old Gandalf. I think Legolas’s bit of news about Gollum caught even him on the hop, though he passed it off.’

‘You were wrong,’ said Gandalf. ‘You were inattentive. I had already heard of it from Gwaihir. If you want to know, the only real eye-openers, as you put it, were you and Frodo; and I was the only one that was not surprised.’

‘Well, anyway,’ said Bilbo, ‘nothing was decided beyond choosing poor Frodo and Sam. I was afraid all the time that it might come to that, if I was let off. But if you ask me, Elrond will send out a fair number, when the reports come in. Have they started yet, Gandalf?’

‘Yes,’ said the wizard. (…) ‘So cheer up, Frodo! You will probably make quite a long stay here.’

‘Ah!’ said Sam gloomily. ‘We’ll just wait long enough for winter to come.’

‘That can’t be helped,’ said Bilbo. ‘It’s your fault partly, Frodo my lad: insisting on waiting for my birthday. A funny way of honouring it, I can’t help thinking. Not the day I should have chosen for letting the S.-B.s into Bag End. (…)


Gandalf elucidates on the fact that the Ringwraiths are not destroyed, even if their horses were. Admitting the right of Pippin’s statement—that someone of intelligence would be needed in the party—Gandalf says he thinks he will go with them.

So great was Frodo’s delight at this announcement that Gandalf left the window-sill, where he had been sitting, and took off his hat and bowed. ‘I only said I think I shall come. Do not count on anything yet. In this matter Elrond will have much to say, and your friend the Strider. Which reminds me, I want to see Elrond. I must be off.’

‘How long do you think I shall have here?’ said Frodo to Bilbo when Gandalf had gone.

‘Oh, I don’t know. I can’t count days in Rivendell,’ said Bilbo. ‘But quite long, I should think. We can have many a good talk. What about helping me with my book, and making a start on the next? Have you thought of an ending?’

‘Yes, several, and all are dark and unpleasant,’ said Frodo.

‘Oh, that won’t do!’ said Bilbo. ‘Books ought to have good endings. How would this do: and they all settled down and lived together happily ever after?’

‘It will do well, if it ever comes to that,’ said Frodo.

‘Ah! Said Sam. ‘And where will they live? That’s what I often wonder.’

For a while the hobbits continued to talk and think of the past journey and of the perils that lay ahead; but such was the virtue of the land of Rivendell that soon all fear and anxiety was lifted from their minds. The future, good or ill, was not forgotten, but ceased to have any power over the present. Health and hope grew strong in them, and they were content with each good day as it came, taking pleasure in every meal, and in every word and song.

So the days slipped away, as each morning dawned bright and fair, and each evening followed cool and clear.


~ from The Ring Goes South



~*~



Film scene.

Sam is crouched in front of a pack, muttering to himself as he stows something away.

Sam: Now, what have I forgotten?

Frodo, strolling onto the terrace, draws near.

Frodo: Packed already?

Sam: No harm in being prepared.

Frodo: I thought you wanted to see the Elves, Sam.

Sam: I do!

Frodo: More than anything.

Sam: I did! It’s just … we did what Gandalf wanted, didn’t we? We got the Ring this far to Rivendell. And I thought, seeing as how you're on the mend … we'd be off soon. Off home.

Frodo: You're right, Sam. We did what we set out to do. Frodo takes out the Ring. The Ring will be safe in Rivendell. Decisively: I am ready to go home.


Frodo and Sam stroll away as the camera pulls back to reveal that Gandalf and Elrond have been watching the two.











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Soon

~ by jan-u-wine


It does me good
to watch
your sleep.

It puts my heart to rest

to see the swift
rise

and fall
of your breath
and know:

it is only
that the air

is sweet and new
and that
somehow,

even in the midst of dreme,
you find an end to wandering,

a finish to weary care,
a joy

in simply being alive.

Your eyes move
beneath sleep-weighted lids,

the least bit of a smile
finds your mouth…

your fingers
curve,

as if they held the warm
smoothness
of a walking stick.

I know what you dreme of:

Home.

You are standing
upon the top of the Hill….

aren't you….


a summer day
shuttering

its fierce gold with purple'd dusk.

Within stark tree-fingers,

stars
twine,

grey smoke
curling

its fragrant fog
into chilled night.

It has been a long day,
hasn't it……

and you are tired.

Only a few steps more
and you will be Home.

See,
there is the door,

and
the almost-warm
brass of the knob.

There are no lights
within,

I know.

Soon enough,
there will be.

Lights,

and warmth spilling
from the grate.

Soon, of a morning,

you will take tea
and a bit of warm

seed-cake
(you never did eat so well)

upon the disordered table.

Soon,
I will pause

in the midst of sun-drowned gardens,
to hear the scratched protest
of quill upon parchment,

or see,
through the window's round,

ink-blotched fingers
following the thread of silvery Elvish.

Soon, you shall take your ease, of an evening,
in the deep

forgetfulness
of Bilbo's old chair.

Soon, you will find rest,

and dreme-less sleep
within the soft confines
of your own *small* bed.

It will do me good
to watch your sleep then, too.

It will ease my heart
to know you have come Home..

Soon.









Previous entry:

Photobucket ~ Riv. 5 – The Red Book: ‘I’m not like you, Bilbo’, plus Pt. 3 of jan-u-wine’s ‘Rivendell Suite’.

Other Links:

~ All entries with jan-u-wine's poems.


~ Main table for all entries


~ Mechtild

Comments:


Rakshi
rakshi at 2008-10-22 14:37 (UTC) (Link)
As always.. spell-bindingly beautiful.

Thanks from the heart to both of you.

Love...
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-22 14:50 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you very much, Rakshi. I'm so glad they included this scene in the films, it has such a lovely, melancholy-sweet, lyrical atmosphere. As in all the Rivendell scenes, the lighting and camera effects are gorgeous. And Jan's poem is splendid. I'm glad--and grateful--that she allows me to rummage through her collection at LotR Scrapbook and pull things out to use here. I so love the way the film images (and manips) work with her narrative verse.

Edited at 2008-10-22 02:50 pm (UTC)
Prim
primula_baggins at 2008-10-22 14:56 (UTC) (Link)
I do love this scene that you've capped here. As in other scenes, it goes by so quickly in the movie. I love the ruins of Rivendell shown and the cascading waterfalls across the valley. The last cap is just wonderful, isn't it?

Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-22 19:48 (UTC) (Link)
Perfect icon for this post, Primula. As you say, "the last cap is just wonderful". I love the way it echoes them stumbling home from the Dragon in happier days, but now the mood as they walk is so very different.

In fact, it would be neat to do a series of moments in the film that showed the same sort of composition. The one in which Sam gets to the end of the land that he knows, out in that field, would be one, too. Sam steps out of the Shire he knows, and Frodo puts a reassuring arm around him. They each have their own nuance, but act as little brackets or beats in the larger story. I'll bet there are lots of others. These three are only from Fellowship.

Edited at 2008-10-22 07:49 pm (UTC)
alyrthia
alyrthia at 2008-10-22 17:24 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you for continuing to put Frodo in front of our eyes--and Jan-u-wine's poem was beautiful.

Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-22 19:44 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, Alyon!
(Deleted comment)
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-22 19:43 (UTC) (Link)
Oh, that's *great*, Mews. Thinking about the reasons for Frodo's reluctance, I didn't even think about him already being so attached to it that he didn't want to relinquish it. I am betting that is part of it.

One of the reasons I love the way they wrote and shot this scene is the way it suggests rather than tells, leaving something to the viewer's imagination. PJ could be heavy-handed in some scenes, but not in this one. I never am through watching this scene.

I love what you wrote about Jan's poem, Sam "naming over all the most beautiful things about home that he can conjure up to bind Frodo to the idea, even in his sleep". That's perfect.
pearlette
pearlette at 2008-10-22 19:21 (UTC) (Link)
I love the passage you've quoted here, beginning with Pippin's cheeky indignation and ending with that oh-so-poignant exchange between Bilbo, Frodo and Sam. And for some reason, this line:

‘Ah!' said Sam. ‘And where will they live? That’s what I often wonder.’

has always made me smile. It's so very hobbity, so very Sam-like, in the most endearing way.

The film scene is superb: it's a great piece of adaptation from the source material, proving that a fine adaptation need not make everything in the film 'just like it is in the book', which is certainly not always workable. This scene between Frodo and Sam, with those exquisite waterfalls in the background, shot in dreamy golden light, conveys everything that the audience needs to know, in terms of exposition and mood ...

... not least Frodo's expression. (Great work, Elijah).

pearlette
pearlette at 2008-10-22 19:22 (UTC) (Link)
oh, and Film Sam is particularly adorable here.

:)
verangel
verangel at 2008-10-22 22:44 (UTC) (Link)
oh *whimpers*..I have to read this closely. This part of the movie always moved me in the transition it reflected. Frodo who is recovering still, the innocence still with him thinking he can let go of that responsibility and go home. You know so much is coming and when you see this part after it is all over, it resonates even more. I have been so overwhelmed with work, husgand's injury (immobility from his crushed ankle (tree downing accident)and kids, not to mention other stuff..that I didn't even get to read it all last time and I won't let that happen again! hugs you xooxxo v
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-23 00:39 (UTC) (Link)
Verangel, oh, no! A crushed ankle! That sounds very bad. Can it be repaired? I hope so. And you sound run off your feet. I hope your husband's ankle heals so that he can walk again, and that things lighten up at work--outof the home and inside it. ("Fat chance!")

All the more do I appreciate you coming in and saying a few words about your love of this scene and the characters. It shows how dear it must to your heart.

Edited at 2008-10-23 12:39 am (UTC)
Lavender Took
lavendertook at 2008-10-23 02:52 (UTC) (Link)
All these beautiful pics you prepare for us as always! I haven't had time to read through these last 3 yet-will soon and you will be hearing from me. *she threatens* (-;
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-23 03:04 (UTC) (Link)
Awww, I think you will like these, Lavender. These were such beautiful film scenes, and Jan's poems are moving and apt (as usual).
verangel
verangel at 2008-10-23 04:09 (UTC) (Link)
I have only read the book once, after the films. I've seen the movie at least 40 times I think by now. (it seems) there is a feeling I have of Bilbo. He is so sensical in his knowing of what he wants, needs and feels is his journey to go on regardless of anyone else (Frodo in this case). I find him a bit selfish and unsympathetic. (don't be angry for that thought please) Frodo has a tragic air about him because he is different, an outcast, taken in but so open and decent a hobbit. Nothing selfish about him. There are whims of thought, but he does and takes on what he knows he must in his heart.
Your thoughts of the film's impressions "I thought his unwillingness to dash off home expressed his reluctance to turn his back on a destiny that he felt in his bones was his, even if he did not yet know it. Also, I thought it was meant to pick up book Frodo’s reluctance to leave a place he so much enjoyed."
I have to tell you, without reading the book I had these exact feelings when I saw this Frodo on screen. It is in his bearing, his paleness and bright kinda sad eyes. His expression is more resigned,his speach lower, softer and also more resigned. There is no excitement in going home, not like you would think from an hobbit. Frodo is different. I think this scene expressed the emotion well.
He'd almost been killed by those wanting the ring. He is safe in Rivendell. They saved him. It is beautiful (and this frodo is so much more elflike to look at...had to digress in this). But now what, who makes their journey safe home? He had very little understanding of the ring and those chasing them.
The pictures are blissful. As I mentioned before, this was a transitional frodo. He was maturing from what he had endured. He doesn't understand but he is becoming much more aware.
hugs you close. These moments are wonderful and I am thankful. the poem is blissful. xoxoxoxo v
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-23 13:44 (UTC) (Link)
Yes, Bilbo was a bit selfish in leaving, especially as presented in the films. But I hope as you read the book, or re-read it, you can see how much attachment and understanding there is between the two. Bilbo had to leave the Shire when he did the way Frodo had to leave the Shire at the end of the Quest. They both needed something the Shire could not offer, or, finally, they'd waste away. Frodo needed balm for his soul, a spiritual cure for a spiritual malaise, not better feeding or more exercise or a livelier social life. His ailment was spiritual, brought on by spiritual damage. But I think Bilbo's "ailment", his dis-ease, was spiritual, too. "Butter spread over too much bread", "thin", Bilbo said, about how he'd been feeling. Gandalf explained later that that was the Ring working on him. Bilbo was increasingly restless, lacking peace inside. He *needed* to leave. Also, Frodo needed to come into his own, which happened only after Bilbo left (just as Sam came into his own only after Frodo left). That Bilbo chose to leave the Shire and his old life in such a prankish way is another matter. But it may have been that he needed to do something abrupt and outrageous in order to go at all.

Just talking out loud here, this is not a worked-out theory... *g*

since the films didn't make the time to show much of that in actual scenes.

Yes, the picturs are "blissful" - great description! I love your note that he is "transitional" here, and why.
Illyria
illyria_novia at 2008-10-23 06:42 (UTC) (Link)
I think what amazed me the most with this series of caps is the realization that Elijah wasn't even twenty when he did these scenes. Yet the look in his face and his eyes seem to show a much older, much wiser soul, someone who had indeed been through some harrowing and some joyful events in their life, who had seen and heard so much in a life long and rich. I find that incredible.

Thank you for capping this scene, Mechtild. And thank you jan-u-wine for another beautiful poem.
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-23 13:47 (UTC) (Link)
Elijah wasn't even twenty when he did these scenes. Yet the look in his face and his eyes seem to show a much older, much wiser soul, someone who had indeed been through some harrowing and some joyful events in their life, who had seen and heard so much in a life long and rich. I find that incredible.

He really is pretty astonishing in this little scene, I agree. That it's beautifully lit and filmed helps. :) In some of these caps, I think he looks different from any other scenes in the film. Above, Verangel said she thought Frodo was "transitional" in this scene, and that may be why.

Thanks for stopping in and commenting, Illyria. WI e love making these posts.
telstar109
telstar_gold at 2008-10-23 14:13 (UTC) (Link)
I seem to have missed your previous couple of posts, but I've caught up now! :)

Your caps here are superb, as always, and of course, Jan's poem is beautiful. Even though not written for this scene, it does, as you say, seem to fit it perfectly. Thank you both!
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-23 14:42 (UTC) (Link)
It *does* fit well, doesn't it? But maybe that's because there's a built in parallel, with Frodo recovering in both instances from a near-fatal experience in the safety of a beautiful place, Sam in attendance. Even though technically, in the book, Frodo woke up from his quasi-coma before Sam, he probably did take longer to recover, having been more depleted from carrying the Ring.

Thanks for commenting, Telstar, and I hope you enjoyed "Rivendell Suite" in the previous three related entries.
(Anonymous) at 2008-10-25 18:26 (UTC) (Link)
Apologies for the lateness of this comment, Mechtild. We have had computer problems, but they're sorted now and I have just caught up with your wonderful Rivendell screencap series.

The images are gorgeous, and Jan's poem perfectly captures Sam's feelings as he watches Frodo sleeping:

'It will ease my heart
to know you have come Home..'

Dear, dear Sam. Sean Astin's gentle, loving glances never leave any doubt about film-Sam's emotions as far as his beloved master is concerned; whether it be helpless pity or heartfelt joy, it's written plain as day in Sam's eyes.

Thank you Mechtild and Jan for an inspiring series.

~ Blossom.
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-25 19:32 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks for your warm comments, Blossom, not just for this post but for so many. I ran one of those "report of LJ replies" tools last week and the most numerous replier on my LJ at this point is "Anonymous". Sometimes "Anonymous" is me when I forget to sign in, and sometimes it is Jan who drops in to respond to comments from time to time. But mostly it is you. I appreciate it not just as a sign that you enjoy these entries, but as an indicator of how much you care about Frodo and LotR.

Sean Astin's gentle, loving glances never leave any doubt about film-Sam's emotions as far as his beloved master is concerned; whether it be helpless pity or heartfelt joy, it's written plain as day in Sam's eyes.

He has incredibly speaking eyes. Actually, both EW and SA are such good 'eye-actors', they do as much in their reaction shots (which tend to focus on their eyes), if not more, than they do when they are the ones lines!
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Lavender Took
lavendertook at 2008-10-30 20:35 (UTC) (Link)
Your screen shots are gorgeous! When I first saw FoTR, I so much fixated on that last cap and the one where Frodo walks out onto the balcony as he finishes dressing--so beautiful. My favorite film scene is still Frodo's meeting Gandalf on the road and riding with him--another totally new adaptation. And that scene, together with this balcony scene and the previous with the Redbook, where the film deviates from the text is where it does most capture book Frodo. The writing trio caught the spirit and ran with it beautifully. Though I can't say that with the deviations in the other 2 films.

And I hadn't thought of it before until reading what you said here, how much the shear beauty of the scenery here does to convey the wonder of the hobbits' longer stay in Imladris, as Tolkien describes it by how delightedly they spend their time there. It's a good illustration of how a proper visual shorcuts text.

What a sweet poem of Sam's caretaker concern from Januwine.
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-30 21:20 (UTC) (Link)
that scene, together with this balcony scene and the previous with the Redbook, where the film deviates from the text is where it does most capture book Frodo. The writing trio caught the spirit and ran with it beautifully. Though I can't say that with the deviations in the other 2 films.


Yes to that! Sometimes their original scenes were gifts, wonderfully inspired. Sometimes ... *not*. I'm so pleased you enjoyed this series, Lavender!
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