Thursday, December 18, 2003

tolkien - as is no doubt being advertised/discussed everywhere, the film adaptation of tolkien's lord of the rings reaches it's climax this week with the release of the third film return of the king. not sure when i'm going to see it yet. normally by brother comes home for christmas, and a few of us will then go and see it. he isn't coming home this year, and other folk seem as disorganised as i am. but no doubt it will be seen soon enough. till then i'll need to avoid reading too much about it, taking up too many people's opinions - i prefer to approach things for myself, hype and opinion are dangerous things, and the most likely to spoil a film.

but it gets me to thinking. lord of the rings. i read the book. twenty years ago. damn that makes me feel old. in primary school i read the hobbit, had read it a couple of times before i tackled a borrowed copy of lord of the rings. at that time it was the biggest and most complex work i had ever read. as a result it took me a year to complete, which by my rates since is a ludicrous amount of time to take. but from there i was a big fan of tolkien's work - i have copies of the silmarillion, the unfinished tales, the lost tales, and sundry other bits and bobs. of course by the time you got into the lost tales things were becoming more tenuous, the this was something he wrote on the back of a napkin and never expanded on kind of discovery, or the 100 page lists of who begat who. which are of course dry reading and take a special kind of obsession.

regardless, i guess its fair to say it was tolkien that started a lot of the reading that i did over the years that followed. the immersion in the works of michael moorcock, the derivative, but still fun reading of terry books sword of shannara. from david eddings to terry pratchet, leaking at the same time into science fiction. i'm not really one for dwelling on nostalgia, but all things considered, it probably is time that i read the lord of the rings again. though refreshing myself before the films might have been a better idea, that might have just lead to the nitpicking that goes hand in hand with an adaptation.

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