Originally broadcast in 1981 on BBC Radio, this full-cast adaptation of Tolkien's epic trilogy is justifiably regarded as a classic; unfortunately, in 2008, it faces inevitable comparison with Peter Jackson's films. While Jackson had stunning visuals, purists may find this simpler adaptation more to their taste. The radio version remains, in some ways, more faithful to the original trilogy. The extensive cuts to the narrative mean that much of Tolkien's poetic description and a degree of emotional resonance are lost, but narrator Gerard Murphy gives what remains the appropriate gravity. Most of the dialogue is pure Tolkien, and the fine cast does it justice. Ian Holm (who appeared as Bilbo in the films) offers a mature, nuanced portrayal of Frodo that is far truer to the text than Elijah Wood's wide-eyed innocent approach. (On the other hand, Sean Astin's accent and inflections as Sam are so similar to the audiobook's Bill Nighy's, one might suspect that Astin studied this recording before filming.) The 12th CD is devoted to a selection of songs from the books, set to original music. (Sept.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Meet the Author
J. R. R. Tolkien (1892-1973) was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor who is best known as the author of the classic high-fantasy books The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings series (The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King). After his death, his son Christopher Tolkien published books based on Tolkien's notes and unpublished manuscripts, including The Silmarillion.
- Date of Birth:
- January 3, 1892
- Date of Death:
- September 2, 1973
- Place of Birth:
- Bloemfontein, Orange Free State (South Africa)
- Place of Death:
- Oxford, England
- B.A., Exeter College, Oxford University, 1915; M.A., 1919
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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This BBC production of The Lord of the Rings is an incredible listening experience. The actors and the music are fantastic - I highly recommend this audio program to all Tolkien fans.
A good set of CDs to throw into the car while you're on a long drive. Easy to listen to, although the list of characters can get lengthy, you'll find that your drive time seems to fly by.