amruniel: (corsage)
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22 - Character You Pity Most

Sméagol, most likely.

He was out fishing with a friend when desaster struck - he couldn't have known that the discovery of an old ring would lead to insanity, addiction and in the end death.




And there's still a part of the rather innocent (or normal) person inside Gollum even after all these years.
I love how his eyes grow bigger, more child-like, and light up whenever Sméagol is on the forefront of Gollum's mind. It's such a beautiful and simple way to make a distinction between the two sides of the character without needing to waste a lot of words to explain what's going on.



So, yes, I do pity Sméagol, I pity the corruption of innocence, the loss of self, the loss of what makes life worth living.
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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21 - Most Inspiring Moment

"Put aside the Ranger, BECOME WHO YOU ARE BORN TO BE"



This quote in particular helped me through a hard time in my life. I didn't know what I wanted to do, I didn't know where I wanted to go - I had lost my sense of self and my way, listening to others and their opinion of what I should or should not do or be.

And then this quote came along and hit something deep inside me. It gave me the courage and strenght to stop listening to others and find my own way, to set out on the road of becoming who I was born to be.

I'm still walking this road, and I'm still trying to find my destination, my life's purpose - but by now I'm true to myself and the things I am passionate about. And whenever the demands of society let me question my way I turn to this scene, this quote. It never fails to inspire and move me, it never fails to give me the strenght and courage it first inspired more than 10 years ago.
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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20 - Saddest Character Death

I'd love to be able to say "Boromir's death" right now, but I sadly can't.
Why? Because of that stupid, stupid, stupid continuity mistake that I can't unsee no matter how much I want to cry in peace!


(note Boromir's hand on Aragorn's left shoulder)

Fellowship-of-the-Ring-Aragorn-Boromir.jpg
(the reverse-shot without Boromir's hand)

Yes, I'm crying buckets every time Boromir says his famous "I would have followed you my brother... my captain... my king!"-line, but that's after I spent the last minute(s) grumbling about that damn stupid hand that's (dis)appearing in every other shot.

So, I'll go with another death - one I can "enjoy" without wanting to strangle PJ:

Haldir's death in the Battle of Helm's Deep



Seeing life leaving an immortal being is just too sad to comprehend. Add the fact that he's dying in Aragorn's arms and I'm lost in tears.
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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19 - Weirdest Screencap

I don't know of any really weird screencaps, but I do have a few funny ones ;)


"W-why is that smelly human touching me?!"


A bunch of funny faces you get when pausing the films at the right -or wrong- moment ;)


And -of course- our most beloved background Legolas and his many weird faces! (See? I DID find something weird after all!)

(thinking about the good times you had last night, aren't you?)


("wooooooohaaaaaaa")

grid-cell-6633-1386799649-24.jpg
("Why is the old guy stealing my spotlight? *slides into frame* Wooooha what's THAT??? Urgh. Gross!!! *intense staring* Better look back at Aragorn real quick!")
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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18 - Coolest Visual Effect

The amazing Dolly Zoom in the first movie:



A lovely nod of the head to Hitchcock and it works perfectly in this particulary scene at that particular time in the film.
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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17 - Elves or Dwarves?

Let me answer that with a few pics :D













And let me add a bonus elf just for the record:

amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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16 - Favourite Female Character



Galadriel - no doubt about that.

"She was one of the greatest of the Eldar in Middle-earth, and surpassed nearly all others in beauty, knowledge, and power. She was also the bearer of Nenya, one of the three Elven rings. Tolkien thought of her, along with Gil-galad the Elven-king, as one of the mightiest and fairest of all the Elves left in Middle-earth."

I love that she's a ruler, a beautiful lady, the bearer of one of the Rings of Power, as well as a warrior.


"Galadriel was born in Valinor during the Years of the Trees, before the First Age had even begun. Much of Galadriel's story is confusing, and there are several distinct tales told about her collected in the Unfinished Tales. According to the older account, used in the published Silmarillion, Galadriel was an eager participant and leader in the rebellion of the Ñoldor and their flight from Valinor due to her desire to one day rule over a patch of Middle-earth herself.

She was eager to see Middle-earth, having heard of it from Fëanor, and wanted to rule a realm of her own. She swore no oaths and was in like mind with Fingon, son of Fingolfin.

However, separated from Fëanor and his kin, she and her people did not take part in the Kinslaying at Alqualondë. They followed Fingolfin instead and crossed the Helcaraxë in the far north.

[...]

She played a relatively insignificant part in the wars of the First Age, as she thought that defeating Morgoth was beyond the power of the Eldar, and when Morgoth was defeated by the coming of the Valar out of the West she, having played no part in the Kinslaying, was offered safe return to Valinor. But Galadriel, being prideful, chose to remain in Middle-earth."


(both quotes taken from the LotR Wikia)

I particularly enjoy her backstory and the way the last quoted sentence explains her cryptic remark "I pass the test" in FotR after Frodo offered to give her the ring.

Come to think of it, while I like Galadriel in the books/movies, it's the parts that are just alluded to or can be found in the appendices or other Tolkien books that make her really interesting. She's a fierce and strong lady that doesn't rely on others to achieve her goals - and that in a universe that has oftentimes be criticised for being anti-female and patriarchal.
And judging by her part in the rebellion as well as in the defeat of Dol Guldur, she's a damn fine fighter as well.

Galadriel wonderful, inspiring, well-rounded female character that can and should serve as a model for strong girls and woman all around the world.
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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15 - Favourite Armour

Well, I pre-empted that one, didn't I?

A day later and my favourite armour is still the elven armour worn in Helms Deep :) Since I posted some film pics yesterday, I decided to use some pictures (of both weapons and armour) taken out of Chris Smith's wonderful "Weapons and Warfare"-book. And I'll add a few pieces of text taken out of the same book. So, here we go:

BOW





"The bows of the Galadhrim were probably the most beautiful in all Middle-earth, and certainly the most powerful; they were made from the legendary mallorn trees that grew only in the Golden Wood of Lórien. [...] The seven-foot staff was sealed with mallorn resin and gilded in an elegant embossed pattern of twining golden leaves either side of the leather handgrip; the curved ends of the staff were gilded and bore a spur, but the nock was located a few inches further in. The length of the bow meant that they could never be fully drawn, but it still meant that the Elves would pull the string back beyond the eye rather than up to it: this required an huge amount of individual strength and years of training as the bows would have had a draw of more than 200 pounds.
[...] The pale arrows were almost four feet long, made from unstained ash or occasionally mallorn shoots, with long broad-head tips made of gold that extended into a long sleeve that gave greater stability. The barbs gave the tips the subtle appearance of a mallorn leaf and were used as cutting edges to tear into the enemy: they were lethal against all targets, whether armoured or not. The flights were long white goose or swan feathers, and these were skilfully tied to the shaft in a spiral pattern with a single corkscrewing loop of gold wire. Lórien arrows were the only ones at that time to employ a spiral fletching, so it can be assumed that the Elves were unique in discovering that an arrow fired with a spiralling flight is much more accurate than a normal one.
[...] Like the sword, the design of the quiver differed little to that used almost three thousand years before: it was made of leather, stood roughly half the length of the arrows, and its mouth resembled two overlapping leaves.

SWORD




The sword carried by the Elves of Lórien differed little to that carried by their Noldor kin during the Last Alliance. It can therefore be assumed that the design had already reached its pinnacle in the Second Age, and was merely faithfully reproduced whenever a new sword was required.
[...] As has been said before, the five-foot sword was half blade and half handgrip: the blade was relatively wide given its length, sharp only along the lower edge and with more weight in the top of the blade than near the cutting edge - it was fullered along the entire length of the top part of the blade. The cutting edge curved up to meet the tip, rather than tapering like a normal sword, partly to keep the blade strong along the entire length and partly to extend the cutting edge round.
[...] Haldir's sword is reported to have been similar in shape to Hadhafang, but larger and thicker in the blade. While it bore no runes down the blade it did have an inset, curving flower-bud detail which grew into the fuller.
The scabbard of the Elven swords was the twin of them in terms of beauty: made from the trees of the Golden Wood, it was a deep burnished honey, with gold tengwar patterns etched along its length. It seems to have been attached to the rig that held the quiver as well as to the belt that went around the warrior's waist: like the arrows, it was long and so was worn on the back, being drawn over the shoulder rather than across the body.

ARMOUR





[...] The most significant factor behind [the] changes between Elven armour of the Second and Third Ages was that the armour worn at the Last Alliance was of Noldorin design whereas that worn at Helm's Deep was fashioned by the Sindarin Elves of Lothlórien. As has already been said, Third Age Elven armour reflected the autumnal themes and hues seen in nature - the coppers and browns and rich golds - as opposed to the greens and yellow-golds of spring, or rebirth, found in earlier pieces.
Before marching to Helm's Deep the Elves put on their steel battle armour [...]. Over their normal travelling clothes was worn a hauberk of very fine gold, leaf-shaped mail, with long sleeves that went into a knee-length skirt of metallic silk that had been painstakingly embroidered to give it a pattern of row upon row of tiny leaf-shapes. Both hauberk and skirt gave the appearance of a carpet of leaves fallen from the tree, nearing the end of their natural cycle. Unlike the Noldorin armour, the gold-plated steel cuirass and fauld were separate. The cuirass represented the very pinnacle of armour design: it was like a fan, in that it featured a hinge point at the breastbone that allowed the lames on both sides to move over each other as the soldier drew his arrows and sword, and as he spun and twisted in combat. This hinge point was decorated with a badge that had each Elf's house enamelled on to it. Each lame was slightly curved to represent a fallen leaf, with the veins on the underside of the leaf now exposed; trailing across the metal armour was a fine gold filigree representing both delicate vines and the tengwar of the written language, Quenya. [...] The fauld consisted of eight lames, and like the cuirass these were linked with leather points to move with the soldier as he did; the design again reflected a fallen leaf. The fauld was attached to the body by a leather belt. To further protect the stomach, a leather tunic was worn between the hauberk and the cuirass. Leather was also used for the gloves and bracers, the bracers extending over the hands to protect them from the snap of the bowstring. To protect the outside of the arms a steel vambrace was tied over the bracer, and a steel pauldron was strapped to the cuirass and arm.
The autumnal theme extended to the helmet, in that its latticed steel gave the appearance of a torn leaf. It flexed when it was put on, fitting snugly around the head to ensure it stayed in place during battle; the small curved crest was more decorative than defensive.
The last item of protection was a cloak of deep green silk, its long ties passing over the shoulders and back to be tied around the waist; although of little use against direct attack its movement could distract the eye of an attacker, causing them to miss their aim. The Sindarin refinement of the Noldorin design resulted in an armour that was the most sophisticated ever to be seen in Middle-earth.
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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14 - Favourite Outfit

There are two answers.

If we're talking about a general favourite outfit regardless of gender I'll go with the armour of the elven army in Helms Deep.
It's cool, it's absolutely warrior-style and yet still has the lightness and nature-inspired components of typical elven wear.






Now for the outfit I as a girl love the best? Eowyn's white dress. I've always loved it, I love the style and cut and I've been thinking about trying my hand at sewing a version of it for myself.





And since it's a very similar cut and would work beautifully with my hair colour - the slightly different green version:
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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13 - Favourite Weapon

I'll chose two sets of weapons instead of just one.

The first one are Aragorn's weapons:


Andúril - Flame of the West, forged from the shards of Narsil




and

Aragorn's dagger





And the second set are Legolas' weapons



his bow of the Galadhrim




and



Legolas' knives





I'd take any of these or all of them any day :)

Lovely craftsmanship, beautiful design, simply weapons to die for! *giggles over bad pun*
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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12 - Favourite Location

I think I'll have to go with Rivendell.




It's always been clear that I would chose some place elven, but in the end Rivendell won by a small margin. I chose it not only for its reputation as "last homely house east of the sea" but also because I could very easily picture me living there. Rivendell has the perfect mixture of woods/nature, water, and a quite solid architecture that doesn't require its occupants to climb up and down thousands of stairs on a daily basis :) (just imagine getting drunk and having to stagger up winding stairs until you finally reach your rooms located at the top of a VERY BIG tree... nope, just nope!)

I'm sure that I could very easily feel at home in Rivendell.
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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11 - BROTP

There are two, actually... or rather, two threesomes ;)

The first are our very own original "Two and A Half Men": Legolas, Gimli and Aragorn






I know that the books only speaks of the friendship between Legolas and Gimli, but since Legolas and Aragorn are joined at the hip (or... somewhere close ;) )anyway, in my head there's no question that it's a friendship between the three of them.


The other group of friends/brothers are Aragorn, Elladan and Elrohir.




Since the films sadly don't give us El and El (or El, El and Estel for that matter), I've had to borrow some pics drawn by people way more talented and creative than me.

My view of the friendship/brotherly bond between the Rivendell Twins and our Ranger is in large parts based upon the Mellon Chronicles (once again: if you haven't yet, go read it NOW!)... and since I've accepted the Chronicles as my head!canon there's no way around mentioning these three as my BROTP - although, since Legolas ends up as a honorary brother to all of them, I guess I could sum up today's question as:

Elladan/Elrohir/Aragorn/Legolas/Gimli ;)
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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10 - OTP

Do you REALLY need to ask???????!





















amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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09 - Favourite Hobbit

In the films: Merry



There's many reasons, but in the end, he's the one who made me laugh the most and while he seems to be the clown of the fellowship he's also the hobbit who understands what's at stake quickest most of the time.


In the books: Fatty Bolger

Because he had the good sense to stay at home in the Shire ;)
amruniel: (corsage)
Watched the last of my three thesis films last night - "The Revenant".

What a movie!

A story-line that could have bored me to death (and quite frankly can be easily told in two sentences without losing anything important) has kept me in its thrall for two-and-a-half hours.

It's mostly down to Leonardo DiCaprio's acting that the movie worked as well as it did for me. I know that there are quite a few people out there who think that while Leo did deserve his Oscar, it shouldn't have been awarded for this movie. I completely disagree. Carrying a film while being alone on screen AND without dialogue for most of the time is an achievement that can't be valued too much. Leo played many iconic roles in his career, but I honestly think that this role is the one that demanded the most of him in terms of pure acting.

Another thing that impressed me deeply are the visuals of the movie. There visual language throughout the whole film is unbelievably impressive. There are so many gems to be found in seemingly "simple" nature takes, there are great shots and stunning camera sequences. It's a joy to watch - and I'm quite convinced that one could enjoy the film without any sound or dialogue as well, the visuals are that good.

I'm impressed and I'm really looking forward to watching it again (well, apart from various really graphic scenes that made me feel a bit nauseous :) ).
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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08 - Gondor or Rohan


Well, that depends, doesn't it? ;)

In any time where Aragorn is not ruling from Minas Tirith and Legolas is not based in Ithilien, I'd take Rohan - wonderful nature and horses all around, what more could a girl whish for?


Once Aragorn and Legolas are around, I'd definitely re-locate to Gondor ;)
amruniel: (corsage)
Watched the second of my three films today - Sean Penn's "Into the Wild".

The story about Christopher McCandless aka Alexander Supertramp, who left society behind and freely walked into isolation.

It's a lovely film I should have watched the first time years ago. Missed time, really. It's one of Himself's favourite films and ranks very high on my own "top movies" list.

It's a touching story, with a beautiful message - and an end that will make you cry. As is often the case with stories based in real life, there is no happy ending for this wonderful young man who set out to find happiness and peace. I'd like to think he's found both along the way, it certainly seems so to me.

It's a film I'm really looking forward to working with. After the first viewing I'm reasonable sure that I won't be able to make it fit into the "heroes journey"-mould I'm looking for in the three movies - which makes it all the more exciting. I love stories that are not told using the ages-old formula, and life certainly has is ways to bring out heroes that don't conform to the trial-loss-and-success pattern most of humanity's great stories are built upon.

I'm happy to have chosen this film for my thesis - I would have missed out on this gem for even longer if I hadn't. And if you haven't seen it, I really urge you to do it! It's really worth it!
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
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06 - Ugliest Orc

Finally a VERY EASY question!

Without any further ado, I'll give you:



GOTHMOG - the very, very, very ugly :)

The Martian

Mar. 7th, 2016 12:42 am
amruniel: (corsage)
So today I've finally started to watch one of the three films I'll discuss in my bachelor's thesis... I'll need to fit in the other two before Thursday and -as usual- I have no idea how I'll find the time to do that.

Anyway - today I've watched "The Martian" and while it's been a bit better than I have anticipated, it's still on my "wouldn't re-watch if I didn't have to"-list.
I've been bored throughout most of the first half - it's soooooo predictable it's painful. Every single accident or setback comes with advanced warning, no surprises at all... and if you've seen the trailer you know the better bits already. The second half did pass a lot faster and while it had a lot more eye-rolling are-you-fucking-kidding-me moments, it also had a lot more of the one redeeming feature:

Sean Bean!

So yeah, he absolutely saved me from taking a lot more breaks than I did anyway. I practically lived from one of his appearances to the next ;) Although I'm sorely disappointed by the missed opportunity of slipping a "One does not simply..."-reference into the movie. I mean, come on! The guy who wrote the book is very probably a nerdy guy, I'm reasonable sure that quite a lot of other geeky or nerdy guys (and girls) worked on adapting the book or the making of the movie in general and NOBODY thought of slipping the quote into the script? REALLY? That's just plain dumb! *rants*

Another thing I'm completely taken aback by? The fact that this is a Ridley Scott movie! I'll be honest and say that I didn't even think about finding out who directed the movie beforehand, and I honestly did not catch Ridley's usual style while watching the film, so it quite took me by surprise when the credits started rolling and I first saw who directed the thing.
Thinking back now I do see some short sequences where Ridley's usual style shone through (most noticeable his tendency to have things floating around - be it pollen or snow or dust... there's a scene outside the Chinese Space Agency where I did think "now THAT's a nice shot" while watching, and now I realize that it's one of the few scenes with floating stuff, in this case snow).
Anyway - since I do think the film is rather meagre all in all I wonder how bad it would have been if somebody else would have directed it. Well, good luck for me, I guess :)

After watching the film I did take some notes and had to thumb through the book that's the basis of my thesis for some detail I have forgotten since the last time I've read it... and while I turned the pages I remembered a picture that sprang out on me the first time around:


("The Writer's Journey" by Christopher Vogler, p. 116)

Doesn't it look like Arwen and Legolas strolling through the woods in Rivendell or Lorien? Or is it just my imagination?
amruniel: (aragorn legolas)
IMG_0862.JPG

05 - Scene That Makes You Laugh

Well... there are a few, too :)

I'll try to keep this post shorter than the one yesterday, I promise...

Pics and Gifs once again )

And that's it ;)

The lovely [livejournal.com profile] silvan_lady alerted me to the fact that quite a lot of pics of yesterday's post don't work *sigh* I rather suspect the same will apply to this post - I'll try to fix it as soon as I've got a bit more time on my hands (and once it's a bit earlier than 3 am ;) )!

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