Innovative and beautiful, cheesy and disjointed.
What most people remember is the mix of the live-action tracing within the traditional animation and just how effectively creepy it managed to be, but for the time this did a pretty good job of adapting the dense novels.
| Original Score: 4/5
... dark and fantastical with a mature approach rare in animated films of its day, and Bakshi's rotoscope process creates an unusually fluid and expressive style.
... in retrospect it feels like an elegant, appropriately sized adaptation - with some beautiful animation work.
| Original Score: 85/100
Bakshi's version, using animation and live-action tracings, is uniformly excellent, sticking closely to the original text and visually echoing many of Tolkien's own drawings.
| Original Score: 3/5
The film is visually compelling even when murk overtakes the narrative.
| Original Score: 3/5
At its best, Bakshi's visualization of Tolkien's world can be startlingly effective
Tolkien fans will appreciate what Bakshi managed to get right.
| Original Score: B
A showcase for inspired imagery and sheer strangeness, a near-miss magnum opus from another era, before the cult of Tolkien went Hollywood.
An atmospheric fairytale romp across the landscapes of Tolkien's imagination.
Quite interesting and rather original.
| Original Score: 6/10
Tolkien fans, who are familiar with novels, will find it enjoyble, while others may be confused by the action.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
It looked terrible then and it still does: cartoon characters move differently from live actors, and the attempt to duplicate natural movement ends in stylistic incoherence.
It's a reckless film, blitzing through some plot points and stalling out over others; the lack of a particular rhythm does not do it any favors, and it is certainly not a fast 133 minutes.
| Original Score: 4/10
Animated adventure too dated and dark for younger kids.
| Original Score: 2/5
Quite simply, those who do not know the characters of Middle Earth going in will not know them coming out.
The live action version trumps it in every conceivable way; there simply is no comparison. And yet Middle Earth is still better off for its presence.