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Old 12-19-2006, 01:03 PM   #1
Boromir88
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The Eragon movie (may contain spoilers)

Fantasy movies seem to be coming out more with the release of the Lord of the Ring's movie. We had it followed by the Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (they are not beginning production on Prince Caspian). Now we have Christopher Paolini's books being made into movies...with Eragon.

Paolini has stepped out several times and said Tolkien and Star Wars were two big influences on him, and anyone familiar with them can see this. I would like to discuss for those who have seen the movie Eragon (though try to keep spoilers down to a minimum).

What similarities did you find with the Lord of the Rings? What reminded you of LOTR? What was your general thoughts about the movie? Or perhaps if you have yet to see it what are you expecting from the movie?

I have not read Christopher Paolini's books, as quite frankly I have heard that you can tell a young teenager wrote it. If the movie script was in any way similar to Paolini's writing...then I can certainly see that argument. So, on to what I felt about Eragon (I don't think there will be any spoilers below, but there may be).

I didn't think it was an awful movie, but it wasn't great either. It's nothing compared to the Lord of the Rings movies...which I kind of expected going in. As teh budget wasn't there for the film to make it into a huge epic picture like the Lord of the Rings. And also Tolkien is in a class that I don't think Paolini will ever reach. He is a talented kid for writing some popular books at his young age, but he has no clue what each word carries and means to the extent that Tolkien did. I wasn't expecting the movie to be like LOTR, so that's probably why I was fairly happy with it.

It was a decent movie, nothing really spectacular about it. I will get it when it comes out to buy and get on sale for a cheap price (if that is any further clue about how I felt about it). The acting was pretty solid. The kid who does play Eragon in his first role, I think did a good job. Jeremy Irons is one quality actor that I would love to see in The Hobbit movie that's coming out. He's got that gruffness for a good mentor role and I think would be comparable to Alec Guinness (original Obi-wan) and Ian Mckellan (Gandalf) if the script was better. He knows what he's doing, he makes some excellent pauses and knows how to deliver his lines. I expected nothing less from Irons.

I think the biggest weakness of the movie was the script, just some awful dialogue. I mean 'Into the sky. To win or die!' is just absolutely horrible...and I felt these cheesy and awful script throughout the movie. It was probably worse than George Lucas' scripts. One more comment the evil lord Galbortorix (played by John Malkovich)...his name sounds like some sort of cleaner...'Get out tough carpet stains with Galbortorix; it'll eat up dirt and grime like nothing else.' And not the name of an evil dark lord...say Sauron for instance.

There are some weaknesses to the movie...if you go in expecting something like the Lord of the Rings there's no doubt you will leave dissappointed. But, it is an entertaining movie, with some solid acting. So, if you go in open minded, you probably will leave the theatres happy.

I'm sure you all have read enough of what this whacky guy felt about the movies...now it's your turn.
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Old 12-19-2006, 01:08 PM   #2
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Well Idid enjoy the book and will try to get to see the film ..I just wonder if the requirement for strong female characters which souped up Arwen's role in the rings will mean that the Elf woman in Eragon will spend less time unconscious and tied up....
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Old 12-19-2006, 01:38 PM   #3
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When discussing other books and movies, please remember to relate your posts to our forum theme of Tolkien's works in order to be on topic. Thanks!
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Old 12-19-2006, 01:42 PM   #4
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For your delectation, one of the most scathing film reviews I've ever read - in last Friday's Daily Mail. Now I'm the least likely person to take the Daily Mail seriously (in fact I wouldn't be seen dead buying it, davem bought it) but this has put me off trekking to the cinema. I might wait until it's on Sky. Or at least until I've attempted to read the book.

Problem is, there's so much other quality fantasy/sci-fi entertainment out there right now to compete with this film. Just on TV, we've got a Doctor Who special at Christmas, plus the series Torchwood and Robin Hood, and I've just seen the adaptation of Pratchett's Hogfather on Sky, which was excellent fun!

So, I now need to be convinced!
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Old 12-19-2006, 01:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
I mean 'Into the sky. To win or die!' is just absolutely horrible...and I felt these cheesy and awful script throughout the movie.
Agreed a hundred times over! That line caused groans throughout the cinema, and there was another equally as bad though I can't recall what it was.

I haven't yet read the books (should be getting them for Christmas) and I have heard that the film is quite different to them in some ways so I may wait to look for comparisons. As for the film itself it was by no means as spectacular as LotR, but it wasn't half bad.
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Old 01-03-2007, 10:41 AM   #6
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I must agree with you Kath...the German translation was just as cheesy...
Unlike LOTR there are many plotholes in the movie
I always wondered...if Eragon flew with his dragon all the way to the dark castle to save the Elvish girl, how did the older guy end up there in time to save him from the wizard...
and if Eragon didn't manage hitting the wizard before, how did he succeed in the end...no sense at all
and the fact that you can control just about anything in that world if you mumble something in Elvish also seems out of line...if this was the case why didn't the Elvish princess just say...rock or something and create a landslide over the enemies in the battle scene...
incredibly many plotholes if you take a close look...the best plotholes in Tolkien's case are the eagles and the Nazgul crossing the rivers...
Now many say it was a great achievement for his age...but still can't be compared to Tolkien's works
We have a Galadriel type monologue in the beginning telling the story of the dragon riders, but I didn't really like it either...the action started too soon, no real introduction into the story like the Party and Bilbo's disappearence
you can also see it lacked the budget of LOTR or Star Wars...
StarWars is just as cheesy and lacks any interesting dialogue usually but its eye-candy makes it legendary, whereas Eragon...isn't that good as far as special effects are concerned either
lastly Eragon seems pretty smart for a normal villager, not really what you would expect of a guy living in the middle of nowhere in a cottage
and finally, the scene where he kills the wizard is the worst...what was the chance that he would manage to hit him exactly through the heart without being killed first...0.1% maybe?
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Old 01-13-2007, 12:04 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Estelyn Telcontar
When discussing other books and movies, please remember to relate your posts to our forum theme of Tolkien's works in order to be on topic. Thanks!
I see virtually no relation to Lord of the Rings, other than some pirated dialogue (in the book) and very vague themes (Elves). Otherwise, it seems to be Star Wars through and through...
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Old 01-27-2007, 09:51 AM   #8
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I can say that the book is richer than the movie. Where LOTR and even HP movies have left out about a 1/4 of each book, Eragon movie left out about 3/4 to give an idea. The book was shaved so thin it's see through. They didn't even have the werecat!!

It was a major disappoint to me. It's near impossible for me not to like a movie. At least it was enjoyable spending some time with my girls. I so wanted it to be good.

My suggestion-borrow the book from the library and rent the movie.
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Old 01-28-2007, 12:02 AM   #9
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ive read the first two books but havent seen the movies, I was asking a friend about the movie and i too was surprised at how much the movie cut out.
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Old 01-28-2007, 01:38 AM   #10
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I really wasn't surprised they cut out a lot from the movie (though I was saddened to see the Anjela's part cut so much), mainly because, when you read the books, you can tell that he's trying to stretch it into a story that is greater than LotR.

And it doesn't work because...well, he's not all that talented (sorry fans).

Though, actually, now that I think about it, he and Tolkien did share something in common.

Lack of character developement.

Now, before you throw your stones at me, let me elaborate. The hobbits were developed, as is Eragon to a degree. However, Legolas/Arya/Arwen (we'll put the elves together), Brom/Gandalf the White (not the Grey), Sapphira...

I wouldn't really care if any of those characters died. I'd say, That's too bad and then move on.

Tolkien can get away with it though, because his work is...epic. It is meant not to be relatable, it is meant to be a shadow (to borrow an illusion in MacDonald's the Golden Key) of things beyond us. It is a tale of good and evil, etc. Tolkien can pull this off because...he's grown up. He knows things, because he's lived longer, experienced things a teenager cannot experience (this is not to say that teenagers don't get It...but it does take experience and talent to write it down in such a powerful way).

On the other hand, Paolini was homeschooled (nothing against them, I'm one myself), but the point is, most homeschoolers (that I've met, including myself), are sheltered. Last I heard (I do not know if this is true), he was still living with his parents and he is now in his 20s.

That will effect your writing. It has effected mine.

So, when it comes to making a movie, there really isn't much to work with if you're comparing Eragon to Lord of the Rings.

I want to say that I did enjoy the movies more than the book (and, for those who know me and my intense dislike for the Inheritance trilogy), this is saying something. The characters seemed more real (not totally real, but a little closer), and yes, the dialogue was painful --~~ that was even in LotR though, as I'm sure some of you will eagerly point to a certain blonde haired elf.

And, like the LotR movies, the music was pretty.

Hope this wasn't too rambly.
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Old 01-28-2007, 03:56 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Might
incredibly many plotholes if you take a close look...the best plotholes in Tolkien's case are the eagles and the Nazgul crossing the rivers...
Now many say it was a great achievement for his age...but still can't be compared to Tolkien's works.
#1. You're right, it can't. Doesn't come close. Nothing is in the same league to 50 years work.

#2. They botched the movie. One and a half hours is okay for ... say ... Happy Feet, but for a 400+ page book it gives entirely the wrong impression.
Half the cities are cut out, the Ra'zac are killed (which leaves no room for the plot involving Roran in the soon to come third book) the characters are very undeveloped when you start the 'exciting' battle scenes and Arya shows no magical talent or even pointed ears. The Urgals have no horns, Daret, we are told, is near the Beor Mountains, Jeod is nowhere to be seen, Angela is badly acted and says nothing about Eragon's future, there are no dwarves! Tronjheim is just a few wooden defenses, the Rose Crystal is nonexistant and the lines are based for three-year-olds, never saying more about main entities than "Greetings, I am Ajihad, leader of the Varden." Saphira can breathe fire all throughout the final battle, Durza summons some big scary black thing completely out of his league, there is no Mourning Sage and much more that I cannot remember without the book! **pants**

Oh yeah and Eragon isn't supposed to be blonde.

In other words it isn't a good enough book to be made a movie and when they did it was very badly done. Sorry. Paolini, I respect you, but your movie reeks.
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Old 01-28-2007, 10:18 AM   #12
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I see virtually no relation to Lord of the Rings, other than some pirated dialogue (in the book) and very vague themes (Elves). Otherwise, it seems to be Star Wars through and through...
Funny you should say that as I was reading a review of Eragon in SFX magazine yesterday (a sci-fi and fantasy glossy that I haven't noticed before and I bought for the Torchwood badges, but is actually pretty good) and they say how similar the basic storyline is to Star Wars, almost as though Paolini based it all on what Joseph Campbell says about Heroes.

Now there's a point about dialogue. I was talking to davem about writing the other night and he suggested I write some stories as radio plays - I recoiled in horror because I find dialogue one of the most incredibly difficult things to write. And I detect that a lot of writers do too, even scriptwriters of Hollywood blockbusters...
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Old 01-29-2007, 09:21 AM   #13
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I have something against Eragon... I've read the first book, but it really strikes as a bad one. It's more like a RPG chronicle than a book.

I really suggest you read something other, I'm sure even you, who have read everything, can find something better than Eragon. Ok, curiosity is one reason to read it, as everybody is talking about it, but it's a bad reason.

It did seem as a book that would easily be converted into a film, but I never expected that a film would come so soon, not that I'm interested in it.
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Old 01-29-2007, 11:16 AM   #14
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Thanks for the reviews, all. Instrumental in removing Eregon from my "see in the theatre" list to my "wait for the video" list ... which is at least a couple of steps above my "avoid at all costs" list, and my "don't rent until it hits the discount rack" list.

Instead, I'll just pop in my LOTR DVDs for the umpteenth time...never gets old to me.
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Old 02-22-2007, 03:58 AM   #15
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I told a friend about it: the name like Aragorn; fate of the world rests on the unlikely hero's shoulders; off questing to bring down the tyrant whose evil knows no bounds; Ra'zac Ringwraiths; random apostrophes inserted into names to make them sound more exotic and fantastical; place-names taken from Middle-earth; falling in love with a beautiful Elf-maiden; Elves coming from over the Sea; perfunctory Elves and Dwarves; and all with the help of a wise mentor.

His reaction: "If I met this Paolini boy I'd ask him Have you ever heard of a book called 'The Lord of the Rings'?"

The blurb alone has about six clichés. But in spite of all this, I enjoyed the first two books. They're enjoyable stories told by a guy who clearly adores Tolkien.

Film is bad, although there are some decent elements to it.

One criticism I can't really understand (in general - not just with Eragon) is about lack of character development; 'paper-thin' characters. Not every character needs depth. That's a whole new topic, though.
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Old 04-04-2007, 05:08 AM   #16
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I didn't watch it yet, sounds cool only I don't like dragons so much. I more like orcs and goblins
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Old 04-06-2007, 09:00 PM   #17
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I have read both Eragon and Eldest; as well as having seen the movie.
I personally extremely disliked the movie adaptation.. basically it sucked. When I read books, and then see a movie adaptation (if there is one); I tend to be a stickler for details.. whether minor or major. I understand that some changes need to be made to fit it to the screen; but when the movie is changed so much to where it barely resembles the book.. then there tends to be a problem. I enjoyed the books.. but I have read so many fantasy series' with the same over all plot.. that it was almost a bit redundant.

With the LotR, the main storyline was kept from the books to the movie; so when I saw the Eragon movie, I was pretty unhappy.
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Old 05-19-2007, 03:22 PM   #18
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The Inheritance Series is a very badly plagiarized book… most of its content is taken from Tolkien’s works and Star Wars.

Don’t you think that the Dwarves and Elves in Eragon are a bit too similar to Tolkien’s Elves and Dwarves? Even their languages sound the same! And is it just me or does “Farthen Dûr” remind you of “Barad-dûr”? Sounds quite similar to me.
Elves’ laughs: “It was a wondrous sound, like flutes and harps trilling with delight at their own music.” And “their clear, pure voices”.

Okay…?

And I read in the first book… somewhere, it mentioned the Elves coming to the land from a far-off place on silver ships… is that supposed to be creative? Does CP really have nothing better to do than copy peoples’ writings? He has a bunch of gibberish words that SOUND like Tolkien’s languages and he calls them languages! They don’t even have a structure… how can those be languages?

Eragon is a downright Marty-Sam. Even RORAN was always thinking “Oh, I’m not as good as Eragon..” or “Eragon could do this but I can’t!”.. “I’m not as strong as Eragon!”… “Eragon’s skills are all better than mine.” Yeah whatever, Paolini… fan fictions belong on the net, not as published books on people’s shelves.

What happened to creativity? Can Paolini not do something as simple as coming up with his own names? Nearly all of the names and places in his books are names from Tolkien’s Arda altered by one letter… and in the case of “Melian”, he didn’t even bother altering it!


...was that on-topic?
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Old 05-20-2007, 08:47 AM   #19
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I remember being puzzled as to why Paolini had the princess get captured at the start only to suddenly move to the main character - then, a few months later, after seeing the first Star Wars film again, I knew why
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Old 05-25-2007, 03:23 PM   #20
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The movie showed up all of the ways that the book was derivative.

As mentioned, you start out with Princess Leia, who's carrying the plans to the Death Star. She gets captured by Lord Vader but in the nick of time, manages to send the precious item away. It ends up in the hands of -- you guessed it -- our hero, Luke Skywalker, who lives with his uncle on a farm in a land controlled by the Empire. After his uncle is murdered by Empire agents seeking the item, Luke sets out with mysterious old man Ben Kenobi to take the item to the Rebel Alliance. On their way, they stop off at the dangerous town of Mos Eisley, and meet up with a scoundrel named Han Solo. Eventually, Ben gets killed, and Luke and Han make their way to the Alliance -- but only after making a pit stop to rescue the princess. There, they have their first encounter with Vader; at the end of the story, Luke and Vader lock in aerial combat to decide the fate of the Alliance.

That is Episode IV: A New Hope, or just plain Star Wars as it used to be called. And it's also Eragon.

Let's tell the story this way:
You start out with Arya the elf princess, who's carrying a dragon egg. She gets captured by Durza the Shade but in the nick of time, manages to send the precious item away. It ends up in the hands of -- you guessed it -- our hero, Eragon, who lives with his uncle on a farm in a land controlled by the Empire. After his uncle is murdered by Empire agents seeking the item, Eragon sets out with mysterious old man Brom to take the item to the Varden. On their way, they stop off at the dangerous town of Dras Leona, and meet up with a scoundrel named Murtagh. Eventually, Brom gets killed, and Eragon and Murtagh make their way to the Varden -- but only after making a pit stop to rescue the princess. There, they have their first encounter with Durza; at the end of the story, Eragon and Durza lock in aerial combat to decide the fate of the Varden.

Of course, the filmmakers got ahead of themselves by including their Emperor character in the very first film, something Paolini wisely did not do -- the Emperor doesn't appear in the first SW. So the movie trots out King Galbatorix, whose name sounds like bathroom cleaner and who is no Palpatine -- he may possibly be the worst movie (attempted) villain I've ever seen.

Sorry if I gave the whole Eragon story away to those of you who haven't seen it, but then again, if you've been alive at any time from 1977 to the present, you've already seen it.

And, to bring it back to LOTR -- no, never mind. This film doesn't deserve to be mentioned in the same sentence. Not only is it incredibly derivative, it doesn't even constitute a story. It's being hailed as a great film for twelve-year-olds -- and it probably is, for them only.
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