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Author Topic: Lord of the Rings: The TWO TOWERS  (Read 1836 times)
PeacefulWarrior
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« on: December 19, 2002, 07:44:27 »

Here's a "real" review I pulled off the best movie website (www.rottentomatoes.com)  which is a site that polls about 15-30 reviews and then rates the movie according to a consensus (it is linked up with all of the reviews and has a forum, etc.)

--------------------------------------------------------------
'Lord of Rings' II is towering feat of filmmaking

2nd film in epic trilogy is even better than first
By Jeff Vice
Deseret News movie critic


 THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE TWO TOWERS — **** — Elijah Wood, Viggo Mortensen, Sean Astin, Ian McKellen, Orlando Bloom, Miranda Otto, Brad Dourif, Christopher Lee; and featuring the voices of Andy Serkis, John Rhys-Davies and others; rated PG-13 (violence, gore, mild vulgarity); Carmike 12 and Ritz 15 Theaters; Century Theatres 16; Cinemark Jordan Landing 24 Theaters; Megaplex 12 at the Gateway; Megaplex 17 at Jordan Commons; Westates Holladay Centre Cinemas 6.

      OK, this is already getting ridiculous. Perhaps it's a good thing that Peter Jackson's "Lord of the Rings" adaptations end next year, or who knows how long he might monopolize the annual No. 1 spot on many a critic's top-10 list?
      And yes, this is one case where you can actually believe the hype — "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers" is indeed even better than its predecessor, "The Fellowship of the Ring," which was a pretty terrific fantasy film in its own right.
      However, even that film pales in comparison to this enthralling epic, which makes the wait for the concluding chapter, next December's "The Return of the King," seem all the more cruel.

Viggo Mortensen, who plays the part of Aragorn, continues to display surprising cinematic range in "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers."

Pierre Vinet, New Line Productions
      Be warned in advance that this second part of the ambitious film trilogy is much, much darker than the previous episode. And even children who were able to get through "Fellowship" without much trouble could be unnerved by this infinitely more menacing installment.
      Of course, the darkness is contrasted with the film's messages about the meaning of true friendship and loyalty and good vs. evil. Also, "The Two Towers" has been made with real heart, real emotional resonance, and the film has a somewhat puckish sense of humor that crops up when it's needed most.
      "The Two Towers" jumps right into the story without recap. As it begins, the Fellowship has been scattered, with hobbits Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood) and Samwise Gamgee (Sean Astin) headed off to Mordor to destroy the One Ring before it can fall into the hands of dark lord Sauron's evil forces.
      To their surprise, they receive an offer of aid from former ring-bearer Gollum (a CGI creation, bearing the voice of Andy Serkis), who promises to find them a less dangerous path into the teeth of their enemies.
      In the meantime, their comrades Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen), Legolas (Orlando Bloom) and Gimli (John Rhys-Davies) are in search of missing hobbits Merry (Dominic Monaghan) and Pippin (Billy Boyd). But instead, they fall in with the forces of men trying to defend their kingdom from an attack by the armies of evil wizard Saruman (Christopher Lee).
      They're also startled by the sudden reappearance of believed-to-be-deceased wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen), who hints cryptically about how he'll aid them in their time of need.
      As for Merry and Pippin, they've also found help from a most unexpected source, the Ents, a race of sentient trees trying to decide exactly what their part is in the struggle.
      It's hard to remember any action sequence in recent cinematic history as intense and enthralling as the extended Helm's Deep battle here, which makes an already great movie that much greater.
      So does the character of Gollum, which is much more convincing than any CGI creation that has come before it. While some of that can be attributed to the film's digital-effects crews, most of the credit has to go to Serkis, who makes him surprisingly sympathetic.
      In fact, Serkis' performance nearly overshadows some very solid turns by the live-action cast. Wood is appropriately tormented as the film's heroic ringbearer, Mortensen continues to display surprising range and, of course, McKellen is as magnetic as ever. (Kudos also to Rhys-Davies, who provides much of the film's comic relief.)
      "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers" is rated PG-13 for intense scenes of fantasy violence (sword fights, arrow fire, combat and explosive mayhem), gore and some mildly vulgar humor (belching). Running time: 179 minutes.
     


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

E-MAIL: jeff@desnews.com
 


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Nerezza
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« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2002, 09:32:09 »

As soon as I saw what happened during the first 1-2 minutes, I knew I would like it better than FOTR(which I loved already). Im glad I braved a blizzard to see it.

"To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible." St. Thomas Aquinas
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« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2002, 09:32:09 »

logoVisit the website of Astral Pulse creator Adrian Cooper.

Home of the best selling book Our Ultimate Reality.

Astral Projection, Metaphysics and many other subjects.

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Qui-Gon Jinn
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« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2002, 11:36:19 »

quote:
3) The computer generated animation is by far THE BEST I have ever seen in any film! Gollum (Smeagol) blends in seemlessly with the live actors!
 

Duh, like Gollum is mere an animated figure... he still lives in the tunnels of the misty mountain and the crew flew him in to New Zeeland for his shots, he is very much a real creature, at least that´s what I´ve been told....  http://www.click-smilie.de/sammlung/mittelgrosse/mittelgr075.gif" border=0>

Daniel, I can´t wait to go see it as I to like most others, loved FOTR...  you seem to know you pictures well !´
http://www.click-smilie.de/sammlung/mittelgrosse/mittelgr053.gif" border=0>



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PeacefulWarrior
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« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2003, 19:22:58 »


Canadian Press
Sunday, January 05, 2003
 
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The Two Towers has scored a triple. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers was the top film for a third weekend, taking in $25.65 million US, according to studio estimates Sunday.

The middle chapter of J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings fantasy epic, The Two Towers pushed its 19-day total to $261.7 million. With no big new films, box-office rankings shaped up much the same as last weekend. Steven Spielberg's Catch Me If You Can, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks in a cat-and-mouse chase between a con man and an FBI agent, remained in second place with $21.3 million, lifting its 12-day total to $97.6 million.

Romantic comedies again held the No. 3 and 4 spots, with Two Weeks Notice grossing $11.6 million and Maid in Manhattan taking in $9 million.

In its first weekend of wide release after debuting in a handful of theatres last month, Jack Nicholson's acclaimed black comedy About Schmidt climbed to No. 5 with $8.75 million. Nicholson plays a retired insurance actuary reassessing his life after his wife dies.

Also expanding was the musical Chicago, with Renee Zellweger, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Richard Gere, which came in at No. 9 with $5 million.

Playing in relatively narrow release at 816 theatres, About Schmidt averaged a healthy $10,723, while Chicago averaged $16,500 in 304 theatres. The Two Towers averaged $7,082 in 3,622 theatres, while Catch Me If You Can averaged $6,719 in 3,170 theatres.

The Two Towers has passed Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, which came out a month earlier and has reached a total gross of $252 million.

Worldwide, Two Towers has hit $560 million, and distributor New Line hopes it will top $1 billion and become the No. 2 film behind Titanic, which climbed to $1.8 billion.

Two Towers picks up where Fellowship of the Ring left off and leaves viewers hanging, awaiting the conclusion next December with The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.

"This is a movie without a beginning and an end. It's not a sequel but a continuation of a story," said David Tuckerman, New Line head of distribution.

Several films that opened over the holidays to qualify for the Academy Awards continued to do well in limited release. The Hours, starring Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman and Julianne Moore, grossed $326,000 in 11 theatres for a $29,636 average.

Spike Lee's The 25th Hour, starring Edward Norton as a drug dealer on his last day of freedom before going to prison, earned $131,000 at five theatres to average $26,281.

George Clooney's directing debut, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, with Sam Rockwell as game-show host Chuck Barris in a fictionalized thriller, took in $91,789 at four theatres for a $22,947 average.

Estimated ticket sales in U.S. dollars for Friday through Sunday at North American theatres, according to Exhibitor Relations Co. Inc. Final figures will be released Monday.

1. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, $25.65 million.

2. Catch Me If You Can, $21.3 million.

3. Two Weeks Notice, $11.6 million.

4. Maid in Manhattan, $9 million.

5. About Schmidt, $8.75 million.

6. Gangs of New York, $7.4 million.

7. Drumline, $5.6 million.

8. The Wild Thornberrys Movie, $5.5 million.

9. Chicago, $5 million.

10. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, $4.5 million.

 
 


fides quaerens intellectum
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We shall not cease from our exploration, and at the end of all our exploring, we shall arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.
T.S. Elliot
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PeacefulWarrior
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« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2003, 19:28:09 »

Wednesday, 11 December, 2002, 11:13 GMT
Meet Gollum and friends

 
Serkis said he gave the character "emtional connection"

Lord of the Rings actor Andy Serkis has revealed the lengths he had to go to for his role as Gollum, by performing each scene twice so the character could be computer-generated (CG).
Gollum, who features heavily in the second Rings epic The Two Towers, is a slimy creature who hinders the Hobbits' efforts in protecting the Ring from evil while they take it to be destroyed on Mount Doom.



I haven't particularly done voice work before - this is totally extreme obviously
 
Andy Serkis [Gollum]  
Director Peter Jackson said it was vital for Serkis to act Gollum's scenes, so the computer could impose the CG image over that of the actor.

"Although it was computer-generated, Peter Jackson wanted an actor to lead the role," Serkis told BBC Radio 5's Phil Williams.

"You can't just have him be an animated creature with an animated voice on top because you wouldn't get that true emotional connection."

Serkis added that the intention had always been that the CG character would have its "psychology and physicality manifested by an actor".

 
Miranda Otto plays Eowyn
 
The role required a lot of extra effort from Serkis, who spent a year in post-production doing "motion capture" wearing a special white suit covered in dots, which pinpointed the joints in his body for a computer.

The dots were fed through cameras to a computer with a CG image of Gollum, which Serkis watched as he re-shot the scenes to "hone" his performance.

The actor, who said he had not previously specialised in voice work, had to provide a distinctive sound for Gollum, who has a split personality and talks in two very distinct ways.

"Gollum's voice is borne out of his mental state of mind, his schizophrenia and guilt at having stolen the ring," he said.

 
Legolas the elf [Orlando Bloom] fights for humanity
 
"He has two voices - Smeagal is the lighter naive victim who he was before he became Gollum, and Gollum is the harder, nastier creature he becomes. It came from the writing - fantastic script-writing," Serkis said.

He also explained that Gollum's face was based on his own muscle structure, which the computer used to create the creature's facial expressions.

Actress Miranda Otto, who is a newcomer to the Rings films, plays Eowyn the White Lady of Rohan, said her character was satisfying to play because she was "as good a fighter as the men".

But Eowyn got "even more ballsy" in the third film, she said, adding: "It was important to me she came across as a strong character and woman because in the book she very much is.

 
Frodo the hobbit is key to the tale
 
"It was a great character to play because on the outside she seems like the archetypal princess character but on the inside she's tough and strong."

Otto had to learn new skills for the film, including sword-fighting and horse-riding, but said her main battle scene had been "thrown together on the day", and that she was "lucky it actually turned out OK".

British actor Bernard Hill, who was Bafta-nominated for his portrayal of unemployed father Yosser Hughes in 1980s TV series Boys from the Blackstuff, said he preferred the Rings film to the book.

Hill, who plays Theoden, King of Rohan, said: "I found the book whimsical with too many tangents, and lost over-written and lost conclusions - things didn't resolve themselves."

'Nerves'

He said the film script "made more sense to me", and that it was "a real distillation of the good elements of the film".

Actor Karl Urban, who is also a newcomer to the film, admitted he found it nerve-wracking having to act in front of such major stars.

His first day of filming, playing Eomér the 18th King of Rohan, involved a battle scene with "300 guys in orc outfits and 500 guys on horseback".

"Right before my first shot I looked at the monitor and right behind Peter Jackson were Ian McKellen and Liv Tyler come to see what the new guy was all about.

"So I was battling away trying to keep the nerves under control as it was and it certainly didn't help the situation," he said.



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We shall not cease from our exploration, and at the end of all our exploring, we shall arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.
T.S. Elliot
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« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2003, 19:28:09 »



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PeacefulWarrior
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« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2002, 07:28:14 »

Nothing I say in this post will spoil the film in any way, so fear not!

****Saw it tonight...in a word, STUNNING.****

  As a fan of Tolkeins wonderful work, I wholeheartedly endorse this film which, in many respects, is superior than it's predecessor.

1) The cinematography is once again breath-taking.  I can't imagine a more ideal location than New Zealand that would capture the "forgotten Europe" that Tolkein tried to convey in his novels.

2) The acting is top-notch, as is the cast,

3) The computer generated animation is by far THE BEST I have ever seen in any film!  Gollum (Smeagol) blends in seemlessly with the live actors!

4) The pace of the film, despite a bit of a lull in the middle, is fast and in many ways keeps ones attention better than the first Lord of the Rings...

I can't wait to see it again!

-Daniel


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We shall not cease from our exploration, and at the end of all our exploring, we shall arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.
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