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The Lord of the Rings (Animated Version) [DVD] [1978]


Price: £19.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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£19.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details Only 7 left in stock. Sold by Frugal UK and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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The Lord of the Rings (Animated Version) [DVD] [1978] + The Hobbit (Region 2) Animated
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Product details

  • Actors: Christopher Guard, William Squire, Michael Scholes, John Hurt, Simon Chandler
  • Directors: Ralph Bakshi
  • Writers: Chris Conkling, J.R.R. Tolkien, Peter S. Beagle
  • Producers: Saul Zaentz
  • Format: PAL, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: Arabic, Bulgarian, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Italian
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English, Italian
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: 26 Nov. 2001
  • Run Time: 128 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (117 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005MHNL
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 10,754 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Ralph Bakshi's animated version of the seminal fantasy trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkein, made by overlaying animation on live action actors (a unique pre-computer graphics technique). Set in the fictional world of Middle Earth, The Lord of the Rings tells the epic story of Frodo, a Hobbit who must defeat the evil figure Sauron who holds the Ring of Power, which controls the fate of all Middle Earth. On the way he and his band of friends and cousins must do battle with Black Riders, a Balrog and various other animated perils.

From Amazon.co.uk

Ralph Bakshi's 1978 animated adaptation of The Lord of the Rings is a bold, colourful, ambitious failure. Severely truncated, this two-hour version tackles only about half the story, climaxing with the battle of Helm's Deep and leaving poor Frodo and Sam still stuck on the borders of Mordor with Gollum. Allegedly, the director ran out of money and was unable to complete the project. As far as the film does go, however, it is a generally successful attempt at rendering Tolkien's landscapes of the imagination. Bakshi's animation uses a blend of conventional drawing and rotoscoped (traced) animated movements from live-action footage. The latter is at least in part a money-saving device, but it does succeed in lending some depth and a sense of otherworldly menace to the Black Riders and hordes of Orcs: Frodo's encounter at the ford of Rivendell, for example, is one of the movie's best scenes thanks to this mixture of animation techniques. Backdrops are detailed and well-conceived, and all the main characters are strongly drawn. Among a good cast, John Hurt (Aragorn) and C3PO himself, Anthony Daniels (Legolas), provide sterling voice characterisation, while Peter Woodthorpe gives what is surely the definitive Gollum (he revived his portrayal a couple of years later for BBC Radio's exhaustive 13-hour dramatisation). The film's other outstanding virtue is avant-garde composer Leonard Rosenman's magnificent score in which chaotic musical fragments gradually coalesce to produce the triumphant march theme that closes the picture. None of which makes up for the incompleteness of the movie, nor the severe abridging of the story actually filmed. Add to that some oddities--such as intermittently referring to Saruman as "Aruman"--and the final verdict must be that this is a brave yet ultimately unsatisfying work, noteworthy as the first attempt at transferring Tolkien to the big screen but one whose virtues are overshadowed by incompleteness. --Mark Walker

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Eric Ian Steele on 2 Feb. 2012
Format: DVD
The only flaw with Ralph Bakshi's beautiful, scary and atompsheric animated version of Tolkein's classic is that it is not the whole story. The film's second part was never completed, leaving the story more than half way through after the first film ends -- however this is a complete movie in iteself. But apart from that one small problem, this is a brilliantly realized rendering of Middle Earth. The exceptional voice cast includes John Hurt and Anthony Daniels. The animation uses innovative techniques such as rotoscoping, so the battle sequences look and feel as though you are watching real people and creatures. The orcs are unforgettable, the elves magical, the hobbits endearing, the Ring Wraiths truly disturbing, and the sequence in Moria is eerie and exciting. Hand-drawn animation always wins hands-down over computer wizardry, but this film is definitely a must-see. We can only wonder what might have been had the project been seen through to completion.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Blued Eyed Pariah on 2 Nov. 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It suddenly occurred to me the other night that I should get this on DVD. So I did. I had this film on tape all through my childhood recorded off TV. I loved it. Watched it last night, first time in years, and I still remember it. I love the characters and the environment's artwork, the music is awesome. It was nice to watch again, made me remember what it was like to be a kid again, all innocent and worry-less... It's a must have for me.
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62 of 71 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 8 Oct. 2001
Format: DVD
I remember going to see this when it was first released in the cinema. I was very disappointed at the abrupt ending and from the first appearance of Treebeard onwards the film seemed very rushed. Years later it is all explained as Ralph Bakshi began to run out of money and did his best to complete the movie at a climatic point - the battle at Helms Deep. The third criticism I have was of the representation of Treebeard himself, while a very difficult character to visualise - I think Bakshi could have done much better.
That aside, the first three quarters of the film, the script and especially the visuals and tone of the film capture middle earth in a way that I believe, to those that have seen this film, remains with you. I do not think it appropriate or fair to compare the animated version with the upcoming movies, that was then - this is now as the saying goes, technology of the 21st Century is making the new trilogy possible.
I am as excited as everyone else about the new movies, but I certainly will not use it as a vehicle to rubbish anything that came before it. The BBC Radio adaptation is also excellent and has its place and so does Bakshi's Lord of the Rings, as indeed will Peter Jackson's trilogy.
Buy the Ralph Bakshi version, you'll enjoy it. I bet you will even see some (now famous) images that actually first appeared here and have been borrowed by various artists and Peter Jackson. One example is the Hobbits hiding, from a Ring Wraith, under a tree on the way to Bree, take a look at this and then the Peter Jackson scene of this you will see that - well take a look for yourself.
Bear in mind it was this film that first got Peter Jackson interested in Tolkien's LOTR.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Hiroki Honda on 16 Jun. 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A great movie by Ralph Bakshi. You can see that Peter Jackson found some inspiration in this animated version.
Although the movie is only until the end of The Two Towers it has given me much pleasure and fun to watch it.
Although at that time Ralph Bakshi didn't want to detailed the Orcs and Uruk-hai (wich are during the entire movie just black and shady) it is still a good movie that replaces the live action for a bit.
Ofcourse it's from 1978 so don't expect much action but the movie has here and there what tension.
It's another approach of Lord Of The Rings in animated version just for a cheap price (bought it for 2,5GBP). Enjoy it while it's still for a fair price. Cheers~
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By P. Macinnes on 23 Feb. 2004
Format: DVD
I've read with great interest the thoughts of people who obviously are 'modern' Tolkien fanatics (late comers to the party). Whether you know the stories inside out or just like the premise of good versus evil, LOTR is a fantastic story that has homage paid to it through many major media milestones. There has been an awesome radio play that saw the modern Bilbo's actor, Ian Holm, playing the part of Frodo; there has been the inspiring and world dominating LOTR trilogy courtesy of Peter Jackson; and then there's the 70s Ralph Bakshi animated feature (cartoon is too simple a phrase to link to this film).
Bakshi obviously laboured hard to produce this movie and although it is not the polished film that Jackson has made, it was and still is a rough diamond that those who can appreciate good film making will find inspiring, interesting and altogether captivating.
I first saw this film when I was about six years old and ever since, this is the vision of Tolkien that I love the most. Seeing The Fellowship of the Ring in December 2001 brought back memories of it, as PJ obviously took elements from the Bakshi version to help him tell his story. Okay, the special effects are fantastic in the modern film – but is this all we want? Take films like Dracula; we've had modern versions made that have paled in comparison to earlier works because they have been too reliant on modern technology. PJ's version isn't a flawed film, it's just I always remember the RB version.
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