Tuesday, December 8, 2009
The Ten Movies That Defined My Decade.
5. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
(Peter Jackson, 2001)
When Sam (Sean Astin) and Frodo (Elijah Wood) decide they will leave the fellowship behind and go to Mordor on their own I couldn't believe it.
When minutes later the screen just faded to black and "directed by Peter Jackson" appeared my jaw fell to the floor.
Before entering the theater that December afternoon almost eight years ago, I had an inkling of what J.R.R. Tolkien's books were all about (although I'd ignored my father's advice that I read them since I was a child).
However I wasn't expecting for a movie cliffhanger to be like the ones on TV. Sometimes we have to wait a few months to know what our favorite characters will go through, but a whole year?
And when it had been this damn good!
Of course during the next two years I always attended the first screening of each chapter on the day of the premiere and in the meantime obsessed about the books (read the three and "The Hobbit" in a few weeks), the music and the Oscars they stacked.
I still am pissed about Ian McKellen losing his Oscar...
But the movies worked on more than a personal level, they reminded me of cinema's ability to take us back to a prime state of wonder, almost like being a child where you just can't believe what you're watching and are too fascinated to start wondering the machinations behind it.
The movies, not so surprisingly, became a sort of tradition in my house for half the decade. We would religiously watch the previous chapter(s) before going to bed and running to the theaters the next day to see the new one.
"The Return of the King" premiered here on a Christmas day (the only one of the trilogy they didn't open on the worlwide premiere) and it truly was the best present anyone-OK a film buff mostly-could ask for.
Now that the decade is over I look back and realize that most of the images I have from this movie don't correspond to the final, awards laden, chapter, but to its humble start which tremulously came to the world and changed it forever.