Home > Film, Opinions (Film) > Film: 30 Movies in 30 Days: Day 19

Film: 30 Movies in 30 Days: Day 19

This post is part of a month-long project, answering thirty topics about movies over thirty days. The subject for the nineteenth day is:

Favourite movie based on a book/comic/etc.

I’m assuming the ‘etc.’ gives me a fairly wide range here to cover a movie adapted from any other source material, which would cover Pirates of the Caribbean for being adapted from the theme park ride, maybe Serenity for being adapated from a TV show (though that seems like a bit of a cheat), and superhero movies (with things like Batman Begins or The Dark Knight being at the top) count even if they’re not directly adapted from a specific comic. Jurassic Park is a good adaptation of the book despite the changes it makes (especially when you look at what they did with the sequel) but the obvious choice here is:

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

(Click the image for a link to the source)

While they’re not flawless adaptations (even at three hours a film a lot of content needed cutting and Peter Jackson had to change a few things) each entry in the trilogy is a great fantasy epic, something which blockbuster movies don’t tackle very often. I’m a big fan of fantasy and would love to see it done well more often, and the Lord of the Rings films are a great example of that, even if the huge budget makes it a very special case that isn’t really going to be repeated for almost any other fantasy film.

Of the three my favourite is The Fellowship of the Ring, simply because it’s more in line with what I like from fantasy, a group of adventurers on an epic quest to save the world. The other two follow on from that but by the start of The Two Towers the Fellowship has already broken, its members scattered across the land and caught up in large battles between huge armies, losing some of that personal touch.

Each film holds up well on its own merits and I don’t think they require knowledge of the source material to be enjoyed, though I can’t say for sure as I’d already read the books before seeing the films. They tell an incredibly epic story with a large cast of talented actors, superb production values (the costumes, sets etc. are excellent) and great direction from Peter Jackson, making it essentially everything I’d want from a fantasy epic.

If there’s one complaint I do have it’s that the running length of each film is a bit much, as in general I’m not keen on films running for three hours or more. It might even have been better to apply the approach Harry Potter (or Twilight) have to their final books to the series as a whole, splitting each book into two and making a series of six films that last two hours each, simultaneously making each film more manageable in size and getting to tell more story in the process. That’s not a major issue though and as a whole the films are a great adaptation of the source material.

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