A “very” sketchy analysis of the Lord of the Rings Amazon series interactive map

Amazon LOTR Map banner

So Amazon just released an interactive map in what appears to be the beginning of a long and tantalising marketing campaign leading to the release of the secretively-termed “Lord of the Rings series”.

The interactivity of this map lies in the user’s ability to zoom in or out of the familiar layout of Middle-earth and scroll across the landscape features. Suffice to say, the map is quite bare – lacking any sort of geographical names or other details.

So what clues can we gather from this rather uncommunicative map. I decided to undertake a quick exercise to analyse the map, and avoid the hundreds of other fan theories most likely spawning out there on the internet.

What follows is my own, unbiased (most probably totally erroneous, but fun-making) analysis of what this map could mean … Continue reading

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21 December 2003

The Lord of the Rings (on-screen logo)

I was 15, and I had just spent the previous twelve months with a feeling of constant uneasiness. I was afraid — afraid of people who knew too much, who had read The Lord of the Rings and would reveal the conclusion to the story before I had experienced it.

During the entire year of 2003, I was ever on the lookout not to find myself part of a conversation that naturally gravitated towards the looming release of The Return of the King. I would veer discussion far away from anything related to the trilogy, and would walk off as fast as a fell-beast flies whenever I heard people close by talking about the films -— often having to hum to myself in order to drown out any noise or keywords being spoken that might spoil the ending. Continue reading

LOTR: Théoden’s sword-swinging moments

Theoden sword swings.jpg

Cinematography is a special branch of filmmaking I hold very dear. The ability to convey a story visually, through the movement of a camera, the setting of a scene and the action of a character, is one of the most powerful tools of making a good film. Continue reading

Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth … looking back in wonder

Tolkien Exhibition 2018
No photography was allowed inside the actual exhibition space due to light-sensitive documents

As you walk up the steps of the Weston Library in the heart of Oxford, anticipation sets in at the sight of a large sign with the word Tolkien printed on it, and wrapped around one of the columns adorning the building’s facade. Heading inside, you find yourself in a large foyer, reminiscent of the British Library, and greeted by that same thought when visiting such places: “There is knowledge here that surpasses all earthly gold and treasure”. Continue reading

5 Great Places in Middle-earth You Can Actually Visit

The following is a guest post written by Kayla Robbins.

Many filming locations featured in the movies are open to tourists!

Are you looking for a unique vacation destination for your next trip? Why not stop by Middle-earth? It may sound too good to be true, but there are actually several places throughout New Zealand that were featured prominently in the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit films that are now open to tourists. Continue reading

“The Shadows Where the Mewlips [really] dwell” – Mapping the road to Mordor?

The Mewlips.png

I’m chuffed by the eager response asking me to post the paper I presented at this year’s Oxonmoot. Well, here it is in full (with a few additional notes) for your enjoyment, if such be its fate. Continue reading

Oxonmoot 2018: My Experience

Oxonmoot.png

You may have noticed my recent inactivity on this blog and my silence during two of the most important periods of the year: Tolkien Week and Hobbit Day. Yet, as you may have also noted, I found myself engaged by a rather unique event.

The following post is an attempt to provide a brief account of my first experience attending this year’s Oxonmoot, organised by the Tolkien Society. Continue reading