1. I’m guessing some of the upset regarding the small presence of Tolkien’s faith is due to people perceiving it as a subtle attempt at persecution–which I’m sure is NOT the case at all. What’s more annoying is that they didn’t have him talk anything like the actual Tolkien. It changes the entire feel of his personhood, which is just… kindof silly. Makes me think of “Darkest Hour,” which portrayed Winston Churchill very much like he actually was. Churchill was more of an active public figure (he spoke in front of people more), but still. I think that approach would have been better, though casting and acting and directing it would have been much more challenging (ex. Tolkien was hard to understand because he mumbled–sort of like Churchill, and that made the viewing experience of Darkest Hour in the theatre a bit more difficult). Anyways, nice article, Marian! Thank you for sharing your impression of the film. Makes me want to see it more.

    • Marian Jacobs says:

      They definitely changed things! The age gap between Tolkien and his wife was never mentioned either. They may have thought it would make it too weird for modern viewers. From an optimistic perspective, they were probably trying to modernize things like his speech and age, etc. and keep other things (friendships, etc.) more primary and authentic.

      • Yeah, makes sense. Still, people are pretty used to period-pieces these days, so that sounds like a series of less-than-good creative decisions. Then again, I didn’t get millions of dollars of investor money to make a biopic about Tolkien so… *shrug* and it seems they did a fine job regardless.

        • Marian Jacobs says:

          For sure. I wouldn’t have done it that way, but I don’t want that to take away from my enjoyment of what was done right.

  2. Part of me’s started to like biography movies and movies ‘based on a true story’ a lot less, partly because of all the little things they tend to miss. If I know a decent bit about the true story, it makes the movies seem a little fake, shallow and annoying, even if I actually do like the film from an entertainment standpoint.

    I did like The Imitation Game, though part of me feels like I might be a little disappointed in it if I knew more about the people it was based on.

  3. Thanks for the review!!! I was a bit nervous about going to see it, but now I think I will.

What do you think?