For Episode 18 of the TPK Podcast we discussed The Lord of the Rings film trilogy by Peter Jackson. During the episode I related the story of what it was like to first see The Fellowship of the Rings in theatre having never read the books.
I was stunned.
I had no idea what I was getting myself into when my wife and I walked into a 10:00 p.m. showing of Fellowship at the AMC Theaters at Downtown Disney in Anaheim, after a long day at the Disneyland Resort. I sat down and was immediately blown away by the incredible story and the visuals in the film, but all the while I kept worrying about my wife, who I assumed was sitting there miserable while I geeked out over this nerdy movie about Hobbits and Elves until 1 o’clock in the morning.
First: we had no idea it was a 3-hour film. We also had no idea that it was part 1 of 3, and I kept thinking, “Man, if they don’t make it to Mordor in the next half-hour, we’re going to be here all night!” I at least got that part right; we were there all night, and they never made it to Mordor!
By the time we were more than 2 hours in, I was really feeling bad for my wife, suffering through this marathon movie after an enjoyable but exhausting day at a theme park, so when the movie finally ended, we stood up, both physically and emotionally drained, and I said to her, “I’m really sorry that went so long. I hope you weren’t too miserable.” To my mild but pleasant surprise, she loved the film and became an instant fan. We rushed out the next day and bought the books, which we both devoured in short order, happy to have discovered this new epic story we knew so little about, but sad to have not known of it before. In short, we had never seen anything like it before, and there will scarcely be anything else that ever compares to the Lord of the Rings.