Ring and the KingTicked off The Return of the King yesterday from the to-view list, and I did come back rather disappointed. It's strictly average, me thought. True, some of the battle sequences were stunningly created, but at the completion of the film, I was just tired. Perhaps it was because I haven't read the books (wanted to hold off till I finished watching all three), but I think they would've been more captivating. My perceptions are coloured by the end of the film being stretched for atleast 15 minutes - everyone in the theatre just lost it at the endless extensions into the future. Guess it's not easy to adapt a sprawling set of fiction.
Was I the only one to see parallels in the screenplay of both the last installments of The Return of the King and The Matrix Revolutions in how there were three very similarly structured threads? One, the main force fighting a seemingly losing battle, the second being a small force bringing succour to the main force from an alternative and difficult route, and the third being the main protagonists moving towards the "source" through difficult terrain and the elements for sacrifice and doubt et al. Very similar to me. Of course, both exhibited a benumbing array of characters (real and fictional) to fill the screen. Gollum's characterization and presentation was keenly detailed as before. That was done very well. Perhaps, my movie watching habits are veering in the direction of more dialogue and less action based films. Still, I liked the Fellowship of the Ring the best. And please don't tell me LOTR-ROTK will win an Oscar! (that is, for Best Pic) I really agree with one BBC film reporter who hoped someone else would beat the force of the reel Ring. I don't think this must've been the best film of the year, and that the direction was top notch (I'm strictly talking in terms of Part III). But everyone's being "oh-so-inevitable" about it, so don't rule out a result similar to Spielberg & E.T at the Oscars (in 1981, IIRC).
The Aussie selectors have always exhibited some sort of perverse pleasure in dropping big names - it may serve to show the rest of the world their reserves and non-reliance on the aces. Though one is faithful to one's favourites, the Aussie selectors have got it right more often than not. Dean Jones mentioned the rumour that Warne would probably not be picked for the tour to Sri Lanka in response to Bhogle's comment that Warne would walk into it, especially given the troubled Indian series for their bowlers. It reflects the opposing positions of the romantic and the hardened pro - the romantics would love to see as much of Warne and his ilk for some more time.