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on 28 June 2004
if you already bought the visual companion to the fellowship or the two towers then this book is a disappointment. too many images from the previous two films, too few from the return of the king. missing when they shouldn't be are shelob (one big spider), grond the battering ram, gothmog the orc general (particularly when he's riding his warg). ok, so they couldn't put in the cgi images, but even the photo guide has images from the houses of the healing, and everyone's seen the photos of the mouth of sauron on the internet so he should have been in there too. by the way, who is the red-eyed man on the back cover?
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This is a hardback book, oversize so it can accommodate the quality of images and text. A "coffee table" edition is what people would label it. This book is a more definitive version than the photo guide, and it goes into the story with more details and more images.
In the first chapter "The Great Task", it recaps the first two movies and what all the characters were doing. Then for Return of the King, Chapter Two pick up with the Kingdom of Gondor, the Realm Aragon is destined to rule. Under the rule of Denethor, father of Boromir and Faramir, he is only the Steward of Gondor. Discovering Boromir's death through one of the seeing-stones has made him power-mad in his grief and bordering on insanity. He is determined to hold on to the throne of Gondor and blames his son, Faramir, for setting Frodo with the One Ring free, and means to stand against Aragon's return as the King of Gondor.
The book adds background for people who love the Rings movies, but have not read Tolkien books, and maybe have a few questions. This is not only a wonderful showcase, super packed with gorgeous photos, but explains little nuances to the non-reader of the books, the film assumes you understand.
So this book is highly recommended to Ring Collectors, but also for lovers of the movie wanting to know a little more. The images are stunning, well selected and give you a piece of the movie to keep forever.
Great Christmas or birthday gift for your LOTR fan.
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on 6 March 2004
As with the other two visual companions, this has a good background to the events unfolding as well as detailing the different places and people we encounter in The Return of the King. However, it sometimes seems to confuse the events which actually happen in the film and which in the book, so occasionally one ends up feeling slightly mystified about what is being described.
But don't let that one negative thing put you off - it is still definitely worth buying if you want more background to the film.
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on 24 October 2012
The three films based on the Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien, beginning with part one The Fellowship of the Ring and ending with the Return of the King, is brought vividly to life with Jude Fisher's accompanying visual companions. Full of stunning photographs adorning the cover, spine and every single page these companion books are a treasure, and a real delight for any fan of either (or both) the films and the book. Each guide contains detailed information on the main, distinctive characters both good and evil, with separate pages dedicated to individuals such as those within the fellowship. The places, landscapes and key locations within Tolkien's middle-earth are explored, as depicted in each film. Fully illustrated with over a hundred color photographs, including shots of epic and dramatic battles between light and dark forces are included. Each book continues on from the next, as it does within the films, continuing the journey from when the reader and the viewer left off. The trials, successes and tragedies of the members of the fellowship's quest are discovered and relived, within the insightful and fascinating introduction. You are taken on a journey from the very beginning right up to the end, where the fellowship's quest comes to its end as the ring is destroyed in the fires of Mount Doom. The companions journey (with Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas), the war of the ring (including the battle of Pelennor fields and the white city of Minas Tirith), and the ring's journey in the hands of the small Hobbit Frodo is scrutinized to the smallest detail. Also included is a brilliant map of Mordor, the dreaded realm inhabited by Orcs, mountain-trolls, fell beasts and Nazgûl. This book presents to the reader an unforgettable tour around middle-earth, from the once proud city of Gondor to the dead marshes and Shelobs lair as this epic struggle is played out before your very eyes.
The photographs within this book are impressive and do really take your breath away, just as chills are sent down your spine when watching the films. I would urge that any fan of the three films invests in a copy of the visual companions, as they do truly add to the experience as a whole and bring the story to life. As an admirer of JRR Tolkien and his extensive works including the Lord of the Rings, I was impressed by the films representation of his work and portrayal of the characters and their story. Nothing can compare to the book itself but the films and the visual book additions are a great recognition to his work.
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on 14 June 2004
This book has amazing good quality photos from the film and other images. The book gives you added information about the film and is a must for all Lord of the Rings fans, packed with gorgeuos photos and answers to many questions that you might want to know about if you haven't read the books. This is a book you can treasure.
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on 21 September 2013
The epic finale to the other two Visual Companions on "The Fellowship Of The Ring" and "The Two Towers", "The Return Of The King" Visual Companion completes the collection. With this book in hand, I can happily relax and feel as content as could be. As a book to partner the film trilogy, it draws you in with stunning photography and movie stills, showcasing the cinematic scope in its entirety. There are also the odd fragments of poems included, showing that Tolkien's poetic sense was just phenomenal. Masterfully written by Jude Fisher, with a map of Mordor surrounded by eleven memorable characters in the front of the book and a full scale photograph of Minas Tirith, this is just right for the ultimate fan.
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on 31 December 2003
this is a pretty good book. it takes you through everything to do with the return of the king. it has quite a few pictures in it as well. and it explains things simply. it is a good buy.
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on 17 March 2012
The book arrived in excellent quality and it was a great read, however the box it arrived in was 5 times bigger than the book. Waist of cardboard but is over shadowed by the brilliant quality and read :)
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on 27 June 2014
It's okay, the only problem with these books is that they could include more photos of the main characters and a bit more info on costumes.
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on 15 April 2014
A really brilliant book - it is really well presented and written - an excellent addition to the film - recommended.
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