Skip to comments.Viggo Mortensen criticizes ‘Lord of the Rings’ films Jackson discovered CGI ‘he never looked back’
Posted on 05/16/2014 4:31:40 AM PDT by Perdogg
So much for that fellowship of the ring.
Viggo Mortensen took a shot at Peter Jackson's dependence on visual effects in the "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy films, which are widely considered to have launched the actor's career to a higher level.
In a frank interview with London's The Telegraph, the 55-year-old star of the upcoming "Two Faces of January" gave a thumbs-down to every J.R.R. Tolkien adaptation his former director has made since the first installment, 2001's "The Fellowship of the Ring."
(Excerpt) Read more at nydailynews.com ...
Without CGI, those films would never have even been made, I think.
I’ll agree when it comes to “The Hobbit” - the endless reliance on ever-perposterous CGI has destroyed the creative story-telling process.
I think Vigo’s criticisms are right on. I also think the headline writer is trying to create more of a controversy than Vigo probably intended. PJ went way over the top on special effects, and in the Hobbit, the effects are now driving the story, at the expense of the plot and characters.
The third movie ... the battle was too much "shaky cam" for me. Had it been in 3-D, I would've been nauseous. That said, I can see the advantage of producing them on the cheap to get them finished on the budget they had and they reworking it later.
That's silly - anybody can make small movies. All you need is an idea and small amounts of funding. It's the epic ones that are difficult to make, because of the gargantuan costs.
The worst thing to happen to film: CGI.
That’s how I felt Lucas ruined the Star Wars triology when he re-released them with all sorts of new stuff including the Titanic of CGI, Jar Jar Binks. Once they get their hands on this stuff the story line too easily becomes: ‘Aren’t I so cute and clever?’
You remind me of people who don’t read and yet think short stories are easier to write than novels.
There is one potential upside to CGI, dead actors can come back and star in new films and living, insufferable actors can go away in poverty and silence.
Sure, we need more movies about teenaged murderesses. Stuff like that is always “critically lauded,” especially if it has homosexual elements, too.
I have often told people that the magic of movies was killed off by computers. The ingenuity it took to pull off effects is extinct. You will never hear someone say, as they walk out if a theater: “Geez, how did they DO that?!”
Kids are amazed if you show them a Keaton or Lloyd movie and say “yes, they really did that stunt - it wasn’t created by CGI.” Of course, the problem with CGI is that is looks so unbelievably phony. Even watching the spectaculars from the 50s like “The Ten Commandments,” show enormous energy and talent to create those effects.
Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe will be in porn films. Our society uses new technology is used in the worst possible ways.
To write either a short story or a novel requires only months or years of effort by a single person. Movies are completely different things. Movies require financing and that in itself is a major undertaking. Directors are like generals planning military campaigns. They need to worry about logistics, timing, equipment, location, expenses and so on. Small movies don't require nearly as much management effort, meaning that sheer artistic vision has a better chance of shining through. Peter Jackson should leave the small movies to the up-and-comers.
The chase in the goblin cavern is too much video game and too little movie sequence.
Well, if you think the important thing is all the work and sweat behind the scenes, bully for you. I happen to think it’s the work up on the screen that matters and nothing else. Small dramas and good comedies are what are needed in film today not more overblown CGI crap.
I’ll stick with the classics and the foreign movies until things change. Which will never happen.
The movie producer should be handling the money and keeping the director in check.
When a person wears both hats, it is harder than wearing just one.
That said, a $100 million project is not necessarily more stressful than a $10 million project, or even a $1 million project. For example, the person that has their entire life wrapped into a $1 million project is likely to feel a lot more stress than a person contracted to manage a $10 million contract.
Have you ever tried casting 100,000 Orcs for a couple weeks of battle scenes? Even if Moochelle is available that still leaves you 99,999 short.
For my tastes, Vigo Mortenson can go pound lembas bread. He was probably the weakest character in all the LOTR films, a greasy, unkempt mumbler who showed little of the regal bearing required of Tolkien’s Aragorn. It was a bad casting job, and Vigo should be doing “Paint Your Wagon” at the Suburban Dinner Theater’s matinees.
Yes, I’m sure that will happen but that stuff is already there; just different faces.
Wait - you mean with each other?
Agreed, although I liked him in Eastern Promises and Historey of Violence. I thought the LOTR films were an excellent adaptation of te books.
When the world created by the mind of the ORIGINAL STORY writer, to create the environment within the character(s) live, breath, think, feel, and act, is changed by Hollywood to where THAT WORLD, i.e., CGI, takes precedence over the character-driven stories, as J.R.R. Tolkien’s stories have always been, the movie sucks.
Example: Edgar Rice Burroughs; John Carter of Mars.
TWICE made, once with Traci Lords, and one without. One called John Carter of Mars. The other, just John Carter.
I have read Tolkien’s works many years ago, before the Bakshi-animated film, “The Hobbit”, was released. THAT film, though not CGI, did act as a precursor to today’s muddling CGI.
I think Viggo is a dork but I also think he’s right. The first movie was closer to the book, it was story driven. CGI in that one complemented the story nothing else. Starting with the next one, CGI started taking over, visuals over story and ROTR was worse.
The Hobbit (I’ve only seen the first one) was awful. CGI to the point of phoniness. I can’t blame the studios for funding these though, the movie going public (ie young people) don’t care about story. They didn’t grow up reading, they don’t have the desire for a plot.
I think Marilyn Monroe already was...
I’ve been playing with 3D effects for years, and I routinely ask “how did they do that?!”
Anyone who thinks the computer does all the work has no idea what they’re talking about. It takes an enormous amount of work and creativity to pull some of this stuff off. That doesn’t detract from the old school special effects stuff, it’s just different.
I was going to note that Dunedain were beardless, being of partial Elvish extraction. Maybe CGI can replace Mortenson...
I'm sure some female was used as the model for Tink's face, but I don't know who.
She looks more like Sandra Dee than MM, to me anyway.
Agreed. Viggo Mortensen is a lousy actor. And a hard left radical.
Oh, sure - MAKE me blow coffee through my nose. Bastard. LOL! :)
Reminds me of my son’s love for Alfred Hitchcock films. While in college on a Saturday night, he decided to stay in and watch one of his favorites: “Rope.” A few of his friends dropped by to see if he was interested in hitting the bars. When he declined, they started making fun of him for choosing to watch “old movies.” One by one, however, they all fell silent as the story line drew them in. Within minutes, the entire gathering fell silent, transfixed by an “old movie” depicting a cold blooded murder, filmed entirely in one room, and centered on three actors. No blood. No gore. No special effects. The boys never moved or spoke during movie. The magic of Hollywood, pre CGI.
The Hobbit movies are okay. Not great literature. I’ve read the LOTR and the Hobbit multiple times and at the first viewing of each movie I had the book in my mind and was disappointed. The second (and in the case of LOTR third time to watch the movie, I got into the visual and accepted that the story line had to change. Most recently I wanted the second Hobbit movie with my granddaughter and loved it. The acting in the Hobbit movies is actually okay. I put them in the same category as the Raiders of the Lost Ark and the other Indiana Jones movie I liked, the Grail with Sean Connery. Fun to watch, not great literature.
Wouldn’t her toes give you another 10 or so?
Agreed. Just because the artist is using a computer rather than film, it doesn’t make them any less an artist.
In the end, if you don’t have a good story, and good writing—the best artists couldn’t make a good production.
It’s about the end product.
That’s a nice story - and Rope isn’t even one of the Master’s top movies! It’s all shot in one or two takes I believe. I think all children should be given art education - film, theater, art, opera and dance appreciation. Of course, that’s a pipe dream since kids don’t even get gym or recreation in the playground anymore.
You’re right, they had to wait for the technology to catch up to the books. And this moron after finishing the movie said when asked what he learned he replied war never solved anything.
He should have played a tree.
I was neither a fan of his portrayal or Jackson’s directing in general. Sadly that was filmed during the Clinton years when retro earth-hippie was cool again, and Jackson admitted that that was his approach, which he kind of mingled with medieval imagery and lowbrow slapstick humor. It completely left out the regalness of the book and the Numenorean/Elvish high culture.
-— Jackson admitted that that was his approach, which he kind of mingled with medieval imagery and lowbrow slapstick humor -—
Seems about right. It’s even more apparent with the Hobbit.
The characters are flat, so the movies have no heart. This explains why Gollum stands out. He’s the only complex character.
Still, the CGI is off the charts.
"I was going to note that Dunedain were beardless, being of partial Elvish extraction. Maybe CGI can replace Mortenson..."
I first read Tolkien's books (the four of them) back in 1966 and did an immediate re-read along with two other re-readings over the ensuing decade. I approached this film effort with great trepidation.
The first film, FOTR won me over and I actually got excited about seeing the rest. (My tolerance for modern, CGI dependent, explosion a minute films is very limited.)
Mortenson was without a question the weakest link in the chain of characters and that greasy, unkempt aura never quite gave way to anything resembling regal, especially alongside the superb kingly acting effected in the person of Theoden, King of Rohan. Mortenson left me with a vague feeling not only of not being kingly, but sexually ambiguous. It seemed like all the romantic effort was coming from Arwen.
Maybe my fantasies are running away with me here, but I think if I had been that close to Liv Tyler I could have mustered up a more impassioned response.
This sounds like some old silent film actors.
When the movie studios discovered “talkies” they never looked back.
I don’t see the connection between Tinkerbell and MM.
I think Tink was being compared to Audrey Hepburn
I could not get past the wormy-wiggly hair on the shorts-wearing Hobbits’ legs. It overshadowed every scene where we could see their hairy little legs.
I agree there were basically no live scenes in the Hobbit. There were a few more in Smaug. The first 3 were awesome and had just the right amount of CGI to make the story work.
I actually think Jackson paid great fealty to Tolkien’s vision. Sure, he took some cinematic license, but in the main, he screened characters that embodied the virtues (and failings) of the Tolkien cast pretty well ... with the notable exception of Aragorn.
For example, Brad Dourif’s Grima was every bit the despicable opportunist Tolkien painted. And Sam — though occasionally heavy-handed — came through as an archetypal hero who doesn’t even comprehend his own heroism.
But probably the truest characterization was Ian McKellen’s stellar portrayal of Gandalf. An epic performance in an epic role he was born to. Too bad he’s a poof ...
I see! Very good!
I didn’t like the character of Aragorn in the movies, but that is the way it was written by Jackson & Co. I also think VM is a dork, but he is spot on about what Jackson has done. The Hobbit films (films? YGBSM!) are hideous caricatures of what Tolkien wrote. Jackson knows nothing about plotting or stories, only overwhelming CGI.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.