out of 4
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The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers
Review by Steve Rhodes
3 stars out of 4
THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE TWO TOWERS, the second in the series, is another
stunning technical achievement for director Peter Jackson. The sets, the
music, the cinematography and the settings are all magnificent feasts for
your eyes. Your heart, however, will likely be a bit disappointed since
this sequel has none of the enormous emotional impact of the first film.
Although the two films are the same length, the first made time stand still,
whereas the latest makes three hours feel like, well, three hours.
Teenagers could end up liking THE TWO TOWERS more than THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE
RING since it relies more on computer-generated imagery and non-stop action
to tell the story. The most interesting and well developed character this
time turns out to be a CG character called Gollum (well voiced by Andy
Serkis). Confusingly, Gollum is also known as Sméagol. With his split
personality, the freaky-looking Gollum has raging verbal battles with
himself. (The worst characters are some of the cheesiest tree people that
you've ever seen. They look like they were adapted from a Disney animated
movie destined to go direct to video.)
Speaking of confusing, whereas THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING was a complex
tale, lucidly told, THE TWO TOWERS is frequently downright impenetrable.
And, if you haven't seen the first one, starting with the second is probably
After two-and-a-quarter hours have passed, one of the characters proclaims,
"So it begins!" The movie finally discovers its raison d'être with a big,
long battle sequence that takes up the rest of the time. It's impressive,
it's stirring, but I felt like I had seen it before.
THE TWO TOWERS is entertaining, even if it is disappointing, clearly
suffering from a bad case of middle movie malady. Let's hope that Jackson
learns from his mistakes this time and makes his final LORD OF THE RINGS
film to be a worthy companion to his first, which was one of last year's
very best films.
THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE TWO TOWERS runs a long 2:59. It is rated PG-13
for "epic battle sequences and scary images" and would be acceptable for
kids around 10 and up.
Copyright © 2002 Steve Rhodes
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