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NF-Lee's Gildor and Frodo

The Stairs of Cirith Ungol Pt. 4 ~ “Go home.…”

Posted on 2007.07.23 at 08:30


(Anonymous) at 2007-07-24 20:20 (UTC) (Link)
Welcome back, Mechtild. It's good to know you had a lovely holiday,

What a terrific sequence of posts. The film version of the Stairs of Cirith Ungol certainly is a departure from the book, but your essay in post#1 makes fascinating reading. The screencaps, as usual, are superb. I agree that Tolkien's own account would have made an exciting and emotional film scenario, but, as you say, PJ seemed determined to separate Frodo and Sam from the outset.

Film Frodo's psychological demise is difficult to watch at times, but Elijah is wonderful here. Frodo looks utterly, utterly physically and emotionally spent when he collapses after wrestling Sam away from Gollum. Frodo's 'Go home' is heart-wrenching to me, and I can only echo your 'What a face!'

I really do believe that his portrayl of Frodo is still Elijah's most accomplished role to date.

Thank you.

mechtild at 2007-07-25 13:06 (UTC) (Link)
Hi, Blossom, I apologize for the delay in replying. I saw your reply in an emailed reply notice but could not open Livejournal, not any of it. For me it was down all evening until I gave up and went to bed. I'm happy to see it restored!

Thanks so much for posting!

I agree that Tolkien's own account would have made an exciting and emotional film scenario, but, as you say, PJ seemed determined to separate Frodo and Sam from the outset.

Did you see estelanui's first comment in Pt. 1? She noted that the splitting of the characters allowed the filmmaker's to more greatly delineate their two separate journeys and experiences as characters, which I thought a cool remark. She said it a lot better than that, but that's sort of what she said.

That happens in the book, too, as soon as Frodo has been stung, of course, with Sam having to rise to the occasion and make a lot of decisions he would have left to Frodo. Sam really shows his stuff in the Pass and Tower scenes in the book, and so does Frodo once we learn that he never told his captors anything under questioning, even though he had been stripped of the Ring. Notably, this did not a) drive Frodo mad (which Gandalf thought might be the result for Bilbo) and b) did not make him give up, since he still refused to answer questions. (Hey, I'm going to have to remember to mention this when I get to the Tower screencaps!)

Well, I'd better stop talking since I have to go to work. P.S. Blossom, I appreciated your remark about this series in The Faculty at K-D. I haven't been back again to say anything. I feel as though I have been saying goodbye in there (esp. the Harem) for many months. Now that's it's definite, I don't seem to have the heart to do the official elegy post.
(Anonymous) at 2007-07-25 20:48 (UTC) (Link)
Estelanui's point is certainly valid, and it could well have been one of PJ's objectives, aside from 'upping the ante' between Frodo, Sam and Gollum.

Now I'm really looking forward to the Tower screencaps after your comments regarding Frodo. It's amazing to think that he didn't succumb to the pressure of the Orcs' cruel torture and constant questioning. It's also fascinating that having been stripped of the Ring, he did not, as you rightly point out, go mad.
Later in the book, when he and Sam are closer to Mt. Doom, Sam offers once more to help him bear the burden. "I should go mad," Frodo tells him. But there can be no doubt that by then the dreadful trek across Mordor has further intensified the Ring's hold on him. But that's for later...

It is a shame about KD, but all good things come to an end, it seems, and most of the threads have slowed down considerably in recent months. It feels like the end of an era. I'm so grateful that there are still people like you, who supply die-hard book and film Frodo fans like me with such wonderful images and
inspiring commentaries. Your contributions are greatly appreciated.

Thank you again, Mechtild.

mechtild at 2007-07-26 00:33 (UTC) (Link)
I believe you are right about K-D. There was no reason, really, for Moggy to keep the thing afloat at this point. And it was wonderful of Sneaking to copy all the threads for people who wanted to save them.

Thanks again for commenting, Blossom. It's good to know you are out there, a fellow "die-hard book and film Frodo fan", thoughtful and gracious.
mechtild at 2007-07-26 00:37 (UTC) (Link)
I meant to add that perhaps it did not drive Frodo mad when the Ring was taken in Cirith Ungol because he was unconscious when it happened. He woke up to a fait accomplit. But if someone should try to take it from him while he was conscious, that might have pushed him over the bring. Although in the Sammath Naur it did in fact happen that the Ring was taken from him by force (book and film), but he did not go mad. In the book Sam even notes that Frodo is again his dear sweet master, in his right mind. But that might have been because the Ring had been destroyed. There was no one to continue fighting with to get it back. That person was dead and the Ring gone. If Gollum had taken it and then run out of the tunnel and down Mt. Doom, I think we could be pretty sure that Frodo would have been after him, if not out of Ring lust then out of his duty to complete the Quest or both.
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