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NF-Lee's Gildor and Frodo

Moria Pt. 3: The Mithril Shirt ~ A Screen Icon

Posted on 2007.02.21 at 10:18

Comments:


Mona
lame_pegasus at 2007-02-21 21:17 (UTC) (Link)
Not blasphemous at all, and I don't feel offended. In fact there is more than one moment in the book (and even more in the movies) where the temptation to compare Frodo with the christian redeemer gets nearly overwhelming. What always kept me from stumbling into this trap was the deep certainty that the professor wouldn't have liked this idea at all.

And still... take the moment when Frodo and Sam have left the Sammath Naur, battered, exhausted and at the edge of dying, and the camera shows Frodo's face, filled with a bone-deep, wondering relief. And he says "It is done"... which reminds me each and every time of the last words Jesus says at the end of the crucifixion. I just checked my english bible where the exact words are It is finished - but the german (lutheran) translation says Es ist vollbracht (an ancient expression for "It is done"). I was always terribly thankful that the german translators of the movie scene chose to use the literal translation, making Frodo say: Es ist getan. The similarities in this scene are strong enough without pushing them to the limits.

Mechtild
mechtild at 2007-02-21 22:35 (UTC) (Link)
I think all the protagonists of LotR have "Christ-like" elements to their characters and stories, not just Frodo. But he does come in for a lot as "suffering servant of the Quest".

Actually, Belegcuthalion, if I had to assign Frodo a role in a religious pageant, I would cast him as "Pilgrim" rather than as Jesus. I see in him the person who shows the way for me, who goes ahead of me on the road to meet sorrow and joy, but I don't see him as my saviour.

I am sure Tolkien would not have liked Frodo talked up as a "Christ figure", and he isn't, except in isolated moments. I think of that "It is done" parallel, too. I can't help it. I've listened to too many Easter Oratorios, watched too many bible movies and heard too many Passion Sunday lesson read.

I was always terribly thankful that the german translators of the movie scene chose to use the literal translation, making Frodo say: Es ist getan. The similarities in this scene are strong enough without pushing them to the limits.

I agree. No sense beating viewers over the head with it. That would make it like allegory, and you know how he hated that. If the symbolic references are subtle, though, they can be appreciated in terms of applicability, which he approved of.
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