While my beta and I have been sending the new chapters of Threshold back and forth, I have been thinking, "What shall I do to occupy myself between revisions...?"
"I know!" I said. "I haven't done any screencaps for a while -- I could make a new series!" I wanted something gratifying to do, but within in a limited time frame. That is because while I am fiddling with revisions, I also am putting together our daughter's "grad party". It takes place the day after tomorrow. But there is only so much cleaning and furniture-moving and shopping one can do without a good Frodo-fix. Tomorrow is going to be given over entirely to food prep and more cleaning, so tonight is IT. So screencaps it shall be.
But which screencaps? Bree should have been next (the scene in which Frodo and the hobbits are upstairs at the Prancing Pony, awed and terrified as they listen to Aragorn's story of the Nazgul). But I knew I couldn't make and tweak a whole new series of caps in one night. But it just so happened that in a fit of procrastination last month I made a big series of caps for a much later scene, Amon Hen, while looking for a face to use for a Frodo Art Travesty (the Lorenzo Lotto). I even tweaked and trimmed them back then, so they were all set to be posted. Therefore, I present....
Amon Hen, Pt. I.
The film changed things around a bit in Amon Hen, but I thought the whole sequence came out splendidly. From the first shiver of Boromir's shoulders as their boats drew up at Parth Galen, I thought it was a great piece of movie-making. But it really was rather different from the book.
In fact, when I first started reading the threads at TORc, a whole year after FotR had been released, fans were still arguing about it with passion. The scene which drew all the fire was the one in which Aragorn intercepts Frodo -- after having been attacked by Boromir and after having run up to the summit and sitting upon the Seat of Seeing, overtaken by a terrifying vision while wearing the Ring -- listens to Frodo's apologies and sorrowfully sends Frodo off with his blessings.
In the film, unlike the book, Aragorn knows that Frodo is going off on his own, and he lets him do it. I think this works perfectly well in the context of the film (not "perfectly well" -- sensationally well), although I would agree that it is difficult to imagine book Aragorn letting Frodo go off to Mordor with only the clothes on his back, all by himself. But the film is the film and the book is the book and, somehow, in the film it works.
In preparing this series of caps for posting, I looked at them and looked at them. The more I looked at them, the more I felt inspired to switch the order of the scenes. Therefore I am showing Frodo's confrontation with Aragorn first, although in the film it is not first.
I had been reading the book scene, and decided the "feel" of the book scene (in which Frodo and Aragorn talk about Frodo having to make his decision to stay with the Fellowship or go off on his own) seemed to come through in their film scene, even though the dramatic situation is very different.
Here is a bit of the book scene, from The Breaking of the Fellowship:
There was a long silence in which no one spoke or moved.
'Well, Frodo,' said Aragorn at last. 'I fear that the burden is laid upon you. You are the Bearer appointed by the Council. Your own way you alone can choose. In this matter I cannot advise you. I am not Gandalf, and though I have tried to bear his part, I do not know what design or hope he had for this hour, if indeed he had any. Most likely it seems that if he were here now the choice would still wait on you. Such is your fate.'
Frodo did not answer at once. Then he spoke slowly. 'I know that haste is needed, yet I cannot choose. The burden is heavy. Give me an hour longer, and I will speak. Let me be alone!'
Aragorn looked at him with kindly pity. 'Very well, Frodo son of Drogo,' he said. 'You shall have an hour, and you shall be allone. We will stay here for a while. But do not stray far or out of call.'
Frodo sat for a moment with his head bowed. Sam, who had been watching his master with great concern, shook his head and muttered: 'Plain as a pikestaff it is, but it's no good Sam Gamgee putting in his spoke just now.'
Presently Frodo got up and walked away; and Sam saw that while the others restrained themselves and did not stare at him, the eyes of Boromir followed Frodo intently, until he passed out of sight in the trees at the foot of Amon Hen.
When I look at Frodo in these screencaps, even though I know something else is being said in the film scene, I imagine I can see everything Frodo might have felt hearing those words that Aragorn spoke to him, putting it kindly but plainly that Frodo must make up his mind at last: then and there. How varied the conflicting emotions; how intense the pressure must have been for Frodo -- not just from the others but from inside himself -- to have to make the terrible decision he had been dreading.
Looking at these caps, it seemed to me that Elijah Wood (and Viggo Mortensen with him) seemed to gather up all the feeling of that book scene and transpose it into the scene written for the film. Maybe that's why I didn't miss the book scene. In a way, it was still there.
~ Screencaps of Aragorn and Frodo's scene on Amon Hen, from FotR, the fullscreen edition of the theatrical release:
Next entry here.
For other Frodo Screencap entries, see the table of links here.?