Do I need to see LOTR movies 1 and 2 before I see 3?
December 17, 2003 5:37 PM   Subscribe

LOTR 3. Will it make any sense at all to the viewer who hasn't seen Episode 1 and 2?
posted by matteo to Media & Arts (10 answers total)
 
I'll hazard a guess and say that yes, someone could watch the third installment and get something out of it. Though the story is richly textured and the world is very detailed, the basic themes are pretty easy to grasp: a quest, a reluctant hero, a time of chaos, an evil rising, and of course, the return of a king. Of course the viewer won't get the most out of it, but I think the conclusion can stand on its own.
posted by holycola at 5:43 PM on December 17, 2003


You might get the gist of the idea, but you wouldn't _get_ the movie.

Spend a few dollars and rent the previous movies. Then go back and read the books.
posted by cheaily at 5:48 PM on December 17, 2003


Just got back from seeing it. I think it stands on its own pretty well, but just in case someone should fill you in on the basic plot points and who's who.

Feel free to hurl rocks at me, but I wasn't completely awed by #3. I liked it, but I've seen lots of better movies. I'm also not a fanboy, so YMMV.
posted by PrinceValium at 5:59 PM on December 17, 2003


At least see #1, then #3, if you can't spare the $5 and 2.5hours to see #2.
posted by stonerose at 6:11 PM on December 17, 2003


thanks everybody for the answers -- it's not that I want to see it (please don't stone me, but I'm embarrassed to admit that I only saw a few minutes of episode 1 before falling asleep -- I was on a plane, and the little dvd screen sure didn't help)
I was just curious if the filmmakers entertained the possibility of making no. 3 more user-friendly for those who are not necessarily into watching the whole trilogy but may happen to go see no. 3 anyway
(I mean, I think Matrix 3 was pretty user-friendly like that. just enjoy the big action scenes and Monica Bellucci's latex dress -- pretty straightforward stuff. Matrix 2 instead seemed to me to require knowledge about no 1 to, for example, manage to make it through the Architect's speech alive )
thanks again for your time, everybody
Appreciated


and anyway I don't like costume movies very much -- with the possible exception of Barry Lindon, and even Kubrick thought it was too slow anyway

posted by matteo at 6:32 PM on December 17, 2003


I just came back from seeing it, and would say definitely not new-user friendly. Nifty battle scenes, though.
posted by thomas j wise at 8:09 PM on December 17, 2003


None of the movies will make any (real) sense to somebody who hasn't read all three books, the Hobbit and the Silmarillion.
And yes, I'm a fanboy.
posted by signal at 8:57 PM on December 17, 2003


See "Fellowship" and "Two Towers" first. Much of "Return of the King" is pay-off, and if you didn't see the setup and development, the battle scenes will look great, but very little of it is going to work emotionally. The third film derives much of its force from the first two.
posted by muckster at 9:11 PM on December 17, 2003


I look at it as more of a 9 hour+ film split into three parts than a sequel to another film, but I can't imagine fully enjoying it without at least having seen the first one. The Battle sequences will definitely look cool, and you might be able to pick a side to root for, but a lot of the little things won't make sense.
posted by drezdn at 11:58 PM on December 17, 2003


I agree with cheaily - it will make sens, but come across as a really bad movie if you haven't seen the others, and even worse if you haven't read the books. Sorry, dood! But I don't think you're doing anyone a favor by shoehorning all of Tolkein into 3 hours anyway.
posted by scarabic at 7:50 AM on December 18, 2003


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