Tolkien’s Trip to the Moon

A Trip to the Moon

Inspiration from Georges Méliès …

I recently re-read Tolkien’s short story Roverandom, in which a dog is transformed into a toy and is sent on a fantastical trip to the moon and under the depths of the sea.

In many ways, it struck me how reminiscent the descriptions of the environment were to A Trip to the Moon (1902) and The Mermaid (1904): two historic films pioneered by director Georges Méliès.

The 1902 work of art, synonymous with the bullet-shaped spaceship hitting the man in the moon, is certainly not an exact word-to-image description from Tolkien’s story. Yet, that sense of imagination from two world creators, not yet aware of the bareness of Earth’s natural satellite, had conjured up strikingly similar visuals for what they thought an explorer would encounter on the moon. Continue reading