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Many people have given their valuable time to create a website for the pleasure of posing questions to Michael Moorcock, meeting people from around the world, and mining the site for information. Please follow one of the links above to learn more about the site.

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Tolkien film

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  • EverKing
    replied
    Yeah, Mike said what I was trying to say. At least we're all in a greement about this. :D

    Leave a comment:


  • Bill
    replied
    Me too.

    I think this is an important point that goes well beyond LOTR and even sexuality, although I guess this is the most obvious application. Mike said it most eloquently, but this is really what I meant by "lenses". I'm not saying that we need to always look past our individual beliefs for those of the group, but I think it is very dangerous to ONLY look at things on an individual basis. Really, isn't that the root of racism, or, more broadly, discrimination (in the negative sense)?

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  • PsychicWarVeteran
    replied
    Yeah, what VonWeiner said...

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  • VonWeiner
    replied
    I never once considered the sexuality of Sam and Frodo until the "media" and others mentioned it. Even in the movies, it never crossed my mind. I just thought they were the best of friends. When people started talking about it, I thought it was just silly.

    Michael made the point far better than I could, so I just want to say I agree. :D

    Leave a comment:


  • Michael Moorcock
    replied
    It's interesting to note these conversations because they are an example of how sexualised our society has become. Sex has been turned into a commodity. Sex is exploited at every possible turn. This wasn't the case when I was young and certainly not the case when Tolkien was writing his books. I would be prepared to put up a spirited argument in favour of Tolkien (aaargh, something's happening to my head -- help me! help me!) in this case. As my regular readers know, I have always celebrated what's become known as gender bending (or blending) and have many characters who are bisexual, a few who are homosexual, so I have no problems with characters being homosexual. However, it is indeed perfectly possible for what used to be called 'platonic' love to exist between individuals -- men and women, women and women, men and men -- and it warps the meaning of that love to sexualise it. Again, I think my readers know I have nothing against sexuality or sex, but
    I do have an attitude about pornography. In some ways our society, by borrowing fetishistic images from the world of pornography, has pornographised (horrible word) itself so that any suggestion of love between individuals must also carry sexual implications. This has infected relationships which used to be innocent and I believe that the
    comradeship felt by Tolkien's characters is indeed innocent of sexuality.
    That the entire book is innocent of sexuality is perhaps why I have always considered it a children's book. It is, of course, perfectly possible to write a children's book which contains sexuality and adult
    books which don't, but certainly the writers who came just before Tolkien or were his contemporaries were, most of them, very curious about
    sexuality and the relationship between the sexes -- Lawrence, Joyce,
    Henry Miller et al. -- while even T.H.White (who was not only homosexual but a paedophile, who exiled himself to Sark primarily for that reason)
    could write very movingly about relationships between the sexes, especially in his treatment of Lancelot and Guinevere in The Once and Future King. That he romanticised the relationship between Merlin and Wart, for instance, still does not mean he was describing a homosexual relationship. It does indicate, however, how paedophiles can romanticise their own relationships, which makes the whole subject a very complex
    one. Meanwhile, I think we can all take it as read that in spite of his
    remarkable hole, Bilbo Baggins was not having it off with anyone but Mrs
    Baggins. Assuming there was one. Neither were the Lion and the Witch
    coming out of the wardrobe for any purposes other than those stated.
    For that matter it's fair to assume that no Drone in a Wodehouse story was enjoying at that time illicit relations with Oofy Prosser. I could go on for a long time about the way in which sexuality has been made into a commodity and how pornography, which is a commodity, has infected our language and our society, but not here. Anyone interested can find references in books such as Casablanca, The Case Against Pornography, or political tracts like The Retreat from Liberty!

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  • EverKing
    replied
    I'd have to agree with Bill on this one. I don't beleive the relationship between Frodo and Sam is a homosexual one or even suggestive of a homosexual relationship. I believe two men (or two women) can love eachother without it having anything to do with sexual preference. In some ways I think two men can connect on deeper level than a man and a woman. I think there is a more natural understanding between two people of the same gender than with two people of opposite gender; an intuitive understanding of the ways the other person communicates. With the same gender I think that it is like two waves moving in unison, as apposed to two waves complimenting eachother, as it is with cross-gender relations.

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  • Bill
    replied
    Two other things to chew on: True, Frodo and Sam could be looked at as an expression of homosexual attitudes, but there are two other options:

    One, it is simply a way for a man to express NON-GAY feelings for another man in an age/era/culture where those feelings would be erroneously construed as homosexual. I know the art I create (to the extent it can be considered "art" 8O) is most often an expression of feelings/ideas that I am either not comfortable or not able to communicate in a more traditional way.

    Two, the relationship isn't gay itself, but rather reflects the attitudes/fears/hopes/experiences/attitudes of the reader. I am NOT saying that anyone who sees Frodo/Sam as an erotic relationship means the reader is ethier gay themselves or afraid of gays/being gay, I am just saying it is human nature to see things through our own personal lenses, even if it is only a matter of degree or importance. We tend to interpret things (those that are open to interpretation) in ways that are either most comfortable or most relevant to our lenses.

    By the way, "daft" is one of the best words in the language.

    Just a thought.

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  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    English blokes of a certain generation turned out a great deal of nursery literature which didn't have much about girlies in it -- or had girlies as mummies or pseudo-mummies (like Wendy for instance). Grahame,
    Buchan and many others... I suspect that there's an association with homosexuality only where homosexuality is associated with fear of women (i.e. only one form of homosexuality). To suggest that all those pipe puffing old uvuncular types who turned the stuff out were secretly
    keeping assignments at cottages in Leicester Square is daft. But to suggest that fear, suspicion or anxiety about women influenced this trend isn't, I think, daft. Lord knows it's a theme which runs through a lot of English fiction (T.H.White actually was gay, of course) and even old roues like K. Amis clearly were afraid and suspicious of women. It manifests itself everywhere. Even Peake is cruel to many of his women in his fiction, although you can't say he ignored them or wrote them out of the plot. I see no point in attacking Tolkien for his manifesting the phobias of his time, as I've said elsewhere. The fact that he manifested the phobias of his times, however, is why I don't personally find him palatable. I don't like Kingsley Amis, either, for much the same reasons.
    I think few were combined readability and originality as thoroughly as Peake, which is one of the reasons I like him so much and it's what redeems him in my eyes and makes him palatable. Readability and originality are what I admire in Ballard, but his social attitudes are sometimes unacceptable to me. Repressed middle class lads like Martin Amis for me lack the originality and therefore are not as interesting to read as, say, Iain Sinclair. I especially liked Peter Ackroyd in his biographies of Dickens and Eliot because of his sympathy to the women involved (and Ackroyd is gay). Being gay has nothing to do with how you represent women. The most evidently heterosexual men I can think of represent women as monsters or madonnas, frequently. At least Tolkien is free of sadism towards women, which is why his films have to be considerably more wholesome than most of the horror films they might have supplanted (with luck).

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  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    I just read an article about hope in The Lord of the Rings. Here is the link http://hollywoodjesus.com/lord_of_the_rings_guest.htm

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  • PsychicWarVeteran
    replied
    Elric promotes a somewhat different harsh realism (that seems to appeal to us all in here) in it's story that Tolkien fans might find unbearable for a fantasy story.
    And I would venture a guess that that's exactly how Mr. Moorcock would have it. True, Elric isn't the sticky-sweet character Tolkien's Frodo is, but perhaps an Elric film will open Fantasy cinema up to those who, like MM, find Tolkien's idea of Fantasy too cliche.

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  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Repressed gay feelings

    Just to address a point which only one person picked up on from my contribution in February - cant men be good buddies without there being repressed gay feeling? Well of course, and in my opinion its very damaging, particularly to the adolescent male psyche,to attribute such feelings (and imply that they are reprehensible) to what is obviously only friendship. I have no problem with gay feelings;Im sure its better if they are expressed rather than repressed. My point about the Tolkien film is that in my opinion, shared by people Ive discussed it with, is that the sequence glows with those feelings, as if Jackson were, consciously or not, questioning the nature of the four hobbits' relationship which reflects so closely that of Tolkien and his buddies. (I'm not,yawn, suggesting Tolkien was gay) Only Sam, the sturdy peasant, actually breeds (he has to supply more sturdy peasants to do the real work while pseudo aristocrats like Frodo Pippin and Merry spend their time on drinking and their other hobbies). Those three are conspicuously uninterested in the female of the species, theyre supposed to be adult but they come across as presexual; given the exclusively masculine framework they choose to inhabit, its not an enormous leap to suggest that if and when their sexuality manifested itself, theres a good chance it would be gay.

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  • McTalbayne
    replied
    Ahhhhh, B movies. Its been a while since ive seen an theatrically released B Movie.

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  • dlackey
    replied
    Oh I fully expect a revival of "B" fantasy movies to come from this, but hopefully, we'll see more AAA titles as well...

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  • reibsome
    replied
    LOTR winning is a duality.
    Certainly the credibility for the genre is massive. Think in terms of the first rap record winning a Grammy.

    I remember the last time Hollyweird was looking at fantasy as a money maker.

    Aside from some minor awkward items, I thought the first Conan movie was well done. Even Excalibur with its polished chrome armor had some value to the story telling. Perhaps the soundtracks OD on Wagner and Carmina Buranna gave the movie more than its writing.

    But, I do recall, every studio had their own lame fantasy movie because all they could see is the dollar sign. Say, for instance, the Beastmaster. I had watched the movie many times but I do not think I would put the ideas, the story and the quality in the same category as anthing in the previous paragraph or any of Mike's stuff for that matter.

    Sometimes I like candy. That's all some of those movies were. Although the B movies kept the likes of Rutger Hauer employed through the 80's (loved him in Blade Runner) I hope the crop that comes in this wave is more nourishing.

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  • dlackey
    replied
    I'm glad ROTK won Best Picture. That is a huge advancement for fantasy films and the best thing to happen to the Oscars since Silence of the Lambs. It was a pretty tepid year for movies anyway, so why not give it to Peter Jackson for his hard work?

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