The Lord of the Rings - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Lord of the Rings Reviews

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July 19, 2015
This movie is nothing short of a disaster. I tried to come with an open mind but everything from the pacing to the animation was hard to stomach.

The most noteworthy part of this movie is its heavy use of rotoscoping, or animating by tracing live footage, and it does so inconsistently. The end product is a cast of cartoon characters surrounded by pseudo-live action extras. The effect is creepy and makes the animation look sloppy.

The plot is also extremely rushed. Rather than cutting extraneous plot to provide a better narrative Bakshi chooses to visit every plot point for 5 minutes. Yes, Bilbo has a birthday party, we visit Moria, we meet Galadriel, but each section is so short that it just serves to make the narrative more confusing. I can't imagine trying to watch this without already being familiar with the source material.

Lastly the characterization is nonexistent. Characters like Elrond, Legolas, and Gimli are little more than placeholders. Characters who DO get personalities are one dimensional and generally obnoxious (looking at you, Sam).

This movie was so, so painful to watch. If you want a TL;DR of this trainwreck watch the Prancing Pony scene and be thankful you skipped the other 2 hours
½ July 7, 2015
Despite it's many, many, MANY shortcomings, it fails to impress upon you a feeling of bewilderment, like Peter jackson's versions did, and is more consistent with the original, "english" feeling of the books and associatedd texts.
The black riders, in particular, are scary. Not that Peter Jackson's riders weren't ominous, but they were seldom scary - more big, american embellishments, like the rest of the film.
The art style is inconsistent, and the rotoscoping, though bold for it's time, fails in terms of uniting the more cartoon look of the characters with the secondary characters. The black riders, again, this style works for, because it makes them more unearthly. It was a mistake to use it for human characters, and the like. The orcs and elves look ridiculous, Peter Jackson's version did greater justice to both them and the balrog, which in this looks something of a chimera. At times the look can resemble a high-school art project.
The soundwork is hit-and-miss - sometimes the absence of music is keenly felt and the effect is stark. Often the vocal recording is inconsistent between shots for the same person. Overall, not a great score, though original and it has it's brilliant moments.
For all it's faults, Peter Jackson's version did a brilliant job of humanising the characters. Here they retain some of the amorphous glibness of the book's characters. Gollum is nowhere near the chaotic schizophrenic malevolent masterpiece that was Andy Serkis's recent work.

It's hard to watch without feelings of absolute smirking postmodern irony, but it's enjoyable - save the battle scenes (eminently dull). I hope that in 30 years time, I'll be showing my grandnieces and grandnephews this version, as well as Peter jackson's LOTR.

ps. Since when is the "s" in "saruman" silent?
April 30, 2015
Yet another childhood/adolescence/adulthood favorite. Brilliant animated effects and a grave atmosphere have made this my personal "go-to" for animated fantasy my entire life.
March 18, 2015
The animation is decent, with solid action sequences, and decent representation of the characters. The downside is that for every one good representation, there are two, or three bad ones right around the corner. This version has a lot going for it, but an overstuffed cast list, and too much plot, leave a lot to be desired.
½ March 17, 2015
This Movie was Crazy!!
March 17, 2015
ok ok I admit, I'm curious...
March 14, 2015
I'm just gonna say that I think it's ALOT better than Rankin/Bass
½ February 28, 2015
I hadnt watched this since I was very young. Upon a further viewing, it is clear that this mis-guided masterwork is far ahead of its time. The best adaptation of "the Fellowship of the Ring" that will quite probably ever be made. Full of dread and atmosphere that is completely missing from Jackson's work. Full of fantasy, and horror, and slightly homo erotic undertones that will probably never return to the public's view of Tolkien.
½ January 18, 2015
I felt it was a little boring, kinda cheesy.
January 11, 2015
A master piece of animation, a total work of art. The first two books of the trilogy (The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers are condensed in only 2 hours and a little bit more. Ralph Bakshi masterfully blends traditional animation with rotoscopic technique (shooting live-action first and redrawing real actors later) that gives an impressive realistic result, all in a movie that is fully experimental and spectacular.
January 8, 2015
El grande de la literatura fantastica llevado a una impecable produccion.
Robbanflix
Super Reviewer
January 2, 2015
Pretty okey animated version of LOTR and well made despite its so old. Very similiar to Peter Jacksons new ones and follow the story much alike those. One bad thing its just covers the first 2 stories and not return of the king but overall good.
December 24, 2014
It's a dull and boring film that looks atrocious and offers nothing to the fans. Don't waste your time.
Super Reviewer
December 18, 2014
We get all the way to the end of The Battle for Helms Deep in two hours. Beat that, Jackson.
December 16, 2014
I don't recommend this movie story but i recommend its animation.
This is a movie that will be the target of anger nerds for having made this damn post-heretical work :)
"THE LORD OF THE RINGS" doesn't respect the original books.
Of the brilliant director who is Ralph Bakshi I prefer his provocative "Fritz The Cat" or his dilettante "Heavy Traffic"

Guys, get ready for a very incomplete adaptation.
December 14, 2014
I'm giving it such a high rating just because it is so halariously bad in all the best kind of ways XD
Super Reviewer
October 10, 2014
Ralph Bakshi adapts J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings as an animated feature film. Co-scripted by Peter S. Beagle, only about half of the novel series is actually covered; from the forming of a fellowship to help Frodo Baggins destroy the Ring of Power to the siege at Helm's Deep. And, this leads to a rather awkward non-conclusion in which the story ends abruptly. The animation is also quite poor, combining rotoscoping with cel drawn animation; creating a bizarre style that's incredible distracting. Additionally, the coloring is extremely dark and drab, using a lot of browns and grays. Bakshi's The Lord of the Rings is an interesting attempt to bring Tolkien's work to the big screen, but it ultimately doesn't work.
September 21, 2014
would love to see this, since the live action trilogy was amazing
July 4, 2014
Many consider Ralph Bakshi's Lord Of The Rings film to be utterly pointless in the wake of the successful and popular adaptations that Peter Jackson directed years later. This movie does have its flaws, but it's visually ambitious and it actually does a fair job at squeezing The Fellowship Of The Ring and half of The Two Towers into a two-hour running time. Personal enjoyment will largely depend on whether the viewer finds the rotoscoped animation to be engaging or clumsy. It's far from Bakshi's best work, but this movie is an interesting curiosity to an enthusiast of either animation or medieval fantasy.
May 31, 2014
Watch Peter Jackson's live-action movies instead.
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