Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by malickfan on Wed Apr 05, 2017 3:49 pm

Planning on listening to the rest of Fellowship tonight, will post my thoughts when I do...

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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Wed Apr 05, 2017 6:10 pm

{{Look forward to hearing your thoughts Malick- if i find myself with a bit of time might listen to the latter part of fellowship myself so its fresh in my mind. Where you starting from? The Ring goes South? }}}

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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by malickfan on Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:56 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{Look forward to hearing your thoughts Malick- if i find myself with a bit of time might listen to the latter part of fellowship myself so its fresh in my mind. Where you starting from? The Ring goes South? }}}

I've listened from 'Flight from the Ford' through to the end of Fellowship.

Initial thoughts ( I'm slighty -drunken so you'll have to forgive me if I go off on a tangent)

- The sparse music continues to be unimpressive (and in the case of Lothlorien sounded a little too... fairytaleish that's not an actual word but you know what I mean), but the main theme has certainly grown on me

- The Rivendell sequences felt a little rushed and confused-many of the actors have similar voices and as a dialogue heavy segment of the book it would naturally be hard to adapt, it wasn't hard to follow per se in this adaptation but it did kinda stop the flow of the narrative, by the end of this version of Fellowship I didn't have much of a grasp of Legolas or Gimili as characters (which is perhaps applicable to the book as well as the characters are often quite broadly written) though I did like the Gimili voice-almost sounded Cockney

- I felt Elrond and Haldir were miscast, this may simply be me nitpicking/biased as both parts are so small, but the actors they chose just didn't sound 'elvish' to my ears, too young and generic posh english, Galadriel was much better and I liked much of this version of the Lothlorien segment better than PJ's.

-Throughout this adaption I've noticed that much (perhaps a majority) of the dialogue is original to the novel, which is commendable but in several scenes the writers commit the radio sin of having characters describe the scenery or talk to themselves (Frodo hearing Gollum following the party, Sam's internal thoughts at the end of Fellowship etc) meaning that I was occasionally taken out of the drama, the frequent mentions of names/places from the book thrown into random conversations is fun as a fan and makes sense in the context of the dialogue, but probably would be confusing/annoying as a new listener (i.e during the Lothlorien scenes we are told Legolas is a Silvan Elf and that they cross the river Nindalf (did I get that right?) none of which is particularly relevant to the key drama) and the absence of the descriptive backstories/history from the book make things feel a little...thin? The use of the narrator was an excellent idea (great voice whoever the actor was) and although the crew understandably had time limitations I couldn't help but think they somtimes narrated the wrong scenes and could have done a bit more 'scene setting'.

- Bill Nighy's Sam continues to grow and impress me, he has a great rapport with Ian Holm and a surprising amount of vocal range considering he's been typecast as a blustery old English man. Robert Stephens Aragorn has grown on me...nothing wrong with the performance but the accent and slightly lispy voice just sounds a little...off? Aragorn was royalty and raised by Elrond so he has something of a privileged background, but he is also a Ranger who spent his pre-crowning life travelling Middle Earth in various clandestine journeys...I hadn't imagined him to sound quite so posh...

- I really liked the sound effects for the Balrog and the Watcher in The Water, nice mix of creepy and loud (actually, the whole Moria sequence was done quite well I thought, though I'm not too keen on the Orc voices), though it was a shame the action sequences were so curtailed, LOTR is far from being a sword and sandals action epic every five minutes, and radio obviously has limitations but the Company have hardly drawn swords in the whole four hours so far, as great as the professor's dialogue can be LOTR is much more than that...I still don't think it's particularly suited to adaption.

- Rather surprised Fellowship ends so suddenly like the book, I still think PJ definitely made the right move in killing Boromir at the end of FOTR rather than the beginning of TT-it simply works better in a adaption, really surprised they didn't do the same here.


So overall, I've really enjoyed this adaptation so far, great acting and script, it's very faithful to the spirit and characters of the book...but the limitations of the medium, running time and 1980's radio technology do occasionally work against it both as a an adaption and stand alone radio play and I still think LOTR is best experienced as a book.

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The Thorin: An Unexpected Rewrite December 2012 (I was on the money apparently)
The Tauriel: Desolation of Canon December 2013 (Accurate again!)
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Well, that was worth the wait wasn't it  Suspect


I think what comes out of a pig's rear end is more akin to what Peejers has given us-Azriel 20/9/2014
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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:34 pm

{{ I'm a fan of the Rivendell section as I really enjoy the Council. Im also a big fan of Boromir in this. The cast shares many similarities to Bakshi's and its the same voice actor on Boromir with the difference here he gets a lot more character to do- and I think he does it brilliantly.

I think with Aragorns casting they were trying to get the mix of grim and royal in exile across- it works in certain situations but less so in others for me.

I love Moria throughout, especially retaining Gimli reciting the poem from its glory days- really paints the picture.
Orc voices- yeah tricky to do and make them seem not human at the same time in radio- and it doesnt quite always work.

I feel with the narrator they were trying to use it as little as possible and only where absolutely necessary- in general I agree with this principle as its a dramatization not a reading of the book- the upshot of this is sometimes you have to move descriptive passage into character narration, which can be tricky not sound clumsy or unnatural as speech. Though this adaptation is by no means the only one that hits this problem. And radio is at least a better excuse for it than most.

Regards Boromirs death- been awhile but does Fellowship not end on the whistling of the arrows towards him? In which case they did technically move it to end of fellowship, just his whole death speech with Aragorn is at start of TT.

Keen now when you get to it to see what you think of how they handle Rohan and Helms Deep- not to mention Frodo and Sam's journey.

'I still think LOTR is best experienced as a book.'

No arguments there, no matter the medium its adapted too thats still true! Very Happy }}

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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by chris63 on Thu Apr 13, 2017 4:46 am

Still listen to the cd when i go to bed, helps me nod off. Merry and Pippin have just escaped from the Orcs and entered Fangorn.


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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:28 pm

{{Good part that- I really like Treebeard in that version }}

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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by chris63 on Thu May 25, 2017 8:20 am


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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by malickfan on Thu Jul 13, 2017 6:33 pm

I'm going to try and get round to listening to the rest of the BBC Adaptation soon and will post my thoughts, my leisure time has been distracted by various other things since (ironically including an ever increasing pile of Big Finish Doctor Who audio) hopefully I'll be able to get back into the swing of it, I think of the three parts of the novel The Two Towers is the one I've read the least so my thoughts on some of the changes will probably be less detailed than they were for the FOTR episodes.

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The Sod-it! : Battling my Indifference December 2014 (You know what they say, third time's the charm)

Well, that was worth the wait wasn't it  Suspect


I think what comes out of a pig's rear end is more akin to what Peejers has given us-Azriel 20/9/2014
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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Thu Jul 13, 2017 7:28 pm

{{{ Looking forward to that Malick- some of my favourite parts of the radio adaption are form TT- dead marshes/Helms Deep among them. }}}

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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by Forest Shepherd on Thu Jul 13, 2017 7:35 pm

As a young listener, the Watcher in the Water bit and the Balrog were terribly confusing. All that stretch of Moria was a muddle to me until I got around to reading the book. Mainly I remember weird ffffsshhh noises like a firework battle.

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Re: Audio Books/Radio Adaptations

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Thu Jul 13, 2017 7:51 pm

{{Several of the action scenes are unclear in my view as to what is going on without book knowledge- a Knife in the Dark is another good example- one of the reasons I like the Helms Deep section however is I feel that was a very inventive, effective, moody way to do the action which worked really well for me.
Although I do like the dialogue in the Moria section- particularly that we get Gimli's song (all be it a verse or two shorter). }}}

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