Now this is something fabulous. It seems that the J.R.R. Tolkien documentary, made in 1997, finally made it onto DVD. This is good news, it will be fun to see the faces again of some of the Tolkien Society Members that I have learned to know since then. I remember having this documentary on VHS back then and must have watched several times,... until someone accidentally recorded another film over it. Now I'm going to order the DVD and see if it is so good as I remember it.
This film tells the story of John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, English writer, poet, philologist and author of many stories, including most famously The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. It describes the importance of the rural English West Midlands, where Tolkien grew up, in shaping his literary imagination and how the ancient northern languages he studied and taught throughout his life influenced his writing.
These factors stimulated him to provide a context in which his own, invented languages might be spoken: an imaginary land called Middle-earth. Accounts of the origins of The Hobbit and of The Lord of the Rings, and the phenomenal success that Tolkien somewhat reluctantly enjoyed when taken up by the counter-culture of the 1960s are included.
This absorbing documentary transports J.R.R. Tolkien fans to rural England, which inspired the celebrated writer to create Middle Earth, the setting for his fantastical Lord of the Rings novels. Discover how the pastoral milieu influenced the author, and how his lifelong study of ancient northern languages helped him develop one of English literature's most vibrant and complex fictional worlds.
The Lord of the Rings is now recognised as a literary classic, the language and spirit of its `Middle Earth' embraced by readers worldwide. Interweaving readings, interviews with contemporaries and biographers, with rare footage of the author, the film reveals a private, academic man at odds with the celebrity and cult status his books attained.
Color, DVD-Video, NTSC
UK: 23 Feb 2009
US: Apr 28, 2009
Narrator: Juliet Aubrey
The Hobbit Performed by Rob Inglis
Readings by Chris Villiers
Produced and Directed by Julian Birkett
Series Editor: Michael Poole
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