The Cinematic Medium: Connecting the Trilogies through fan-films

New Zealand

– Seeing more of Middle-earth on screen

If you’re a fan of ‘The Lord of the Rings’ film trilogy like I am, you’re probably eager to see the rest of ‘The Hobbit’ trilogy too (unless you’re one of those who absolutely despised ‘An Unexpected Journey’). I’m not one of those – see my review of the film here: ‘The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey’: A review).Born of Hope

Whilst waiting for the wait to be over, why not indulge in some fantastically fan-made films? (alliteration at its best there)

‘Born of Hope’ (2009) and ‘The Hunt for Gollum’ (2009) are the two prime examples.

Acting out as an “appendix” (I really love that word, don’t I?) to the already established films, they further explore some of the stories that occur prior to ‘The Hobbit’ and ‘The Lord of the Rings’.

‘Born of Hope’ is a one-hour feature film about Arathorn and Gilraën and their first meeting; the struggles of their people and Aragorn’s birth. It also features characters from ‘The Lord of the Rings’ (which remain unseen in the films), such as Elladan and Elrohir – sons of Elrond.

Fast-track the timeline by a couple of decades (in terms of Tolkien’s Chronology) and you get ‘The Hunt for Gollum’. Aragorn is by now a fully grown Dúnedain ranger, who under the advice of Gandalf, sets out in the Wild to capture the sneaky creature known as Gollum.

hunt-for-gollum-posterFor those who’ve read through ‘Unfinished Tales’, the film is based on the chapter “The Hunt for the Ring” (the name of the film has a similar ring to it too – no pun intended of course).

Both films (made by different filmmakers) are a perfect example of the determination and talent of a group of people who, apart from being fans of the books, have managed to recapture the feel of the Trilogy and placed them within the cinematic world of Middle-earth.

Boasting strong performances, good fighting choreographies and hauntingly beautiful LoTR-like landscape shots (especially in ‘The Hunt for Gollum’), you’ll be reliving similar experiences to the overall vibe that seems to surround the classic film trilogy.

Have a look for yourself at these productions here:

So whilst us Ringers (i.e. fans of the films) are waiting for the release of ‘The Desolation of Smaug’ in December, we can all re-watch for the nth time the Extended Editions, plus these two fan-made films – all of this whilst re-reading the books themselves, of course.

3 thoughts on “The Cinematic Medium: Connecting the Trilogies through fan-films

  1. I have yet to see The Hunt of Gollum, but yesterday I watched Born of Hope. Surprisingly I enjoyed it, and just like many films do it gave me a much easier explanation of Aragorn’s story. I also like how the director made herself a character in the movie, and I think she did a lovely job.

    Being a low cost production I think this was very well done. The orcs could as well be in the LOTR movies. At first I imagined they would have halloween masks that would show their real faces, but they did actually look “exactly” like any other orc.

    The fighting scenes was made in a clever way. The slow motion and not showing actually wounds made it look more realistick than it would have if they had tried to hard making ketchup blood.

    All in all it was simply nice to put a face on Aragorn’s parents, aswell as Elrond’s sons, that weirdly enough looked exactly like I imagined, even without expensive costumes.

    1. Agree with everything you said!

      These fan-made films really add that extra dimension to the cinematic world of Middle-earth – as well as giving others the ability to envision Tolkien’s other ‘untapped’ tales with different artistic methods.

      It’s a pity the Tolkien Estate doesn’t see it this way – just recently, a short film was being developed on the Fall of Gondolin, but had to change its storyline to a general fantasy.

      A real pity :/

      1. Yeah I think it’s sad that they don’t give it chance. I understand that it’s difficult to see someone else take over parts of your work and legacy, but I wish they would see it as a bit of an honor. Peter Jackson really loves Tolkien’s work, as do fans. People simply want to be able to “physically” touch it and share it 🙂

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