🧙 The Tolkien Forum 🧝

Welcome to our forum! Register a free account today to become a member! Once signed in, you'll be able to participate on this site by adding your own topics and posts, as well as connect with other members through your own private inbox! Plus you won't see ads ;)

Aragorn's Decision

H

Harad

Guest
The movie and the book told the story of Aragorn's decision at the breaking of the Fellowship in 2 very different ways. The questions are:

1. Why did the movie alter the book's events?
2. Which do you prefer or is it a wash?

THE BOOK
Frodo escapes from Boromir and the Big Red Eye. He runs down from Amon Hen, PUTS THE RING BACK ON, and invisibly returns to the boat and sets out across the River. He has to turn back to rescue Sam. Aragorn infers that Frodo & Sam have crossed the River and decides that he is more needed to rescue M&P, who were captured looking for Frodo, than to aid the Ringbearer on his all-important Quest.

THE MOVIE
Frodo escapes from Boromir and the Big Red Eye. He runs down from Amon Hen, and meets most of the rest of the Fellowship. He converses with Aragorn and they agree that Frodo should proceed alone. After this, M&P divert attention from the Orc raiders to allow Frodo to escape, and are themselves captured. Aragorn then has no decision. He has already let Frodo go. The only thing left to do is rescue M&P. Frodo has to turn back to rescue Sam.
 

Bill the Pony

Registered User
Joined
Dec 12, 2001
Messages
188
Reaction score
1
2) Personally, I liked the book better, because it leaves openings for interpretation. The film version was one of the possible reasons Aragorn might have had for letting Frodo and Sam go, but there are others possible (as has been discussed on another thread), and what I like about the book is that it leaves it up to the reader to pick the reason that suits him/her best.

PS I won't get into the debate of logic of putting the ring back on, because that has been done on another thread also.
 

Snaga

The Usual Suspect
Joined
Feb 11, 2002
Messages
2,261
Reaction score
5
Personally I preferred the old version of this thread!:D
 

Snaga

The Usual Suspect
Joined
Feb 11, 2002
Messages
2,261
Reaction score
5
Oh no I wouldn't want to. I remember it as a truly wonderful thread. Finding it again might spoil it for me. That's called nostalgia!;)
 

Mlangley

Registered User
Joined
Jan 2, 2002
Messages
20
Reaction score
0
Location
El Salvador, Centra America
>Well after a long time being gone from here... I have return... I was forgeting my pasword and change it for an easier to remember... the name of my dog...


But anyway....

I think they have the change a little the part when frodo goes becouse is more dramatical the way it is show in the movie... first the scape, then the fight and then he get in to the boat.... in the book first the scape, then the boat and then the fight...

I love the book part better, but let face it, it is a movie and they had to do it in that way
 

Gothmog

Lord of Balrogs
Staff member
Joined
Sep 10, 2001
Messages
1,960
Reaction score
158
Location
Cardiff, United Kingdom
In my opinion the movie changed the events because they had a wimpish version of Aragorn and had to show that he was starting to grow up.

I prefered the book version as it showed that Aragorn was a person of high nobility and would not have let Frodo walk into danger without helping.
 

Thorin

LOTR Purist to the end
Joined
Aug 20, 2001
Messages
1,402
Reaction score
15
I agree.

Frodo left because he knew that his friends would have followed them. He force Aragorn's hand by taking off.

"I will follow the orcs," he said at last. "I would have guided Frodo to Mordor and gone with him to the end; but if I seek him now in the wilderness, I must abandon the captives to torment and death. My heart speaks clearly at last: the fate of the Bearer is in my hands no longer. The company has played its part." The Two Towers "The Departure of Boromir"


Seems pretty simple as to why Frodo left without telling Aragorn. The movie totally takes that thought process and brave decision from Frodo, making it look like some group decision to let Frodo go.

The movie contradicts itself by emphasising at the COE Aragorn kneeling and saying, "By my life or death I will aid you." Then consciously allowing Frodo to go on his own. In the book, Frodo takes that decision away leaving Aragorn with the noble and truthful aim he had to help Frodo. I think the way Tolkien played out the events and then threw the monkey wrench of M&P getting captured tells me he planned it all to happen that way.....and it works.

The movie, however, gets by...
 
H

Harad

Guest
I believe the last 2 posters have starry eyes imagining what is in the book, and do not admit what is really in the book. Aragorn is closer to F&S than he is to M&P. It would be easier for him to catch up with F&S than M&P. He therefore CHOOSES to abandon the Ringbearer despite his pledge at CoE (or did he just pledge at Bree?) and his highsounding words that the "Ringbearer is beyond my help." Get real! If he wanted to help the Ringbearer he still could have.

In fact, the reason he followed M&P is because it simply was a better story.

You 2 are guilty of illogic. Did Aragorn have a choice?

1. You say yes: The book was better because he had a choice.

2. You say no: He had no choice, so he had to follow M&P

You want it both ways.
 

Gothmog

Lord of Balrogs
Staff member
Joined
Sep 10, 2001
Messages
1,960
Reaction score
158
Location
Cardiff, United Kingdom
Harad kindly stop insulting my inteligence. you asked for opinions I gave my opinion.

You asked two questions about two different things therefore you got two answers one for each question.

The film had a problem with the way they showed Aragorn.
The book had no such problem.

In the Film Aragorn did not have a choice of which hobbits to go after. When he allowed Frodo to leave without him he did not know that the others had been captured. Therefore he should have insisted on going with Frodo.

Now I will ask that you tell me what IS in the book that I do not admit.

Aragorn had he chased after Frodo would have left two hobbits to the lack of mercy of Saruman. He was faced with a Choice of which path to take, Frodo in the book left the fellowship willingly thereby making the choice themselves (or at least Frodo did and Same went along with it.) Pipin and Merry did no such thing. In the film Aragorn made a Choice that he would not have done had he been potrayed as in the book. In the Book Aragorn felt that he had at that point a chance to save Pipin and Merry, he had less certainty about helping Frodo. To go after Frodo would mean abandoning Pipin and Merry. Also at the time he makes the choice he doesn't know that he is closer to Frodo and Sam.

By the way I do not care about logic. It has problems coping with life.
 
H

Harad

Guest
I appreciate your opinion. If I disagree with it it shouldn't offend you.

Aragorn in the film chose to let Frodo go alone. Frodo "outranked" him as the RingBearer and told him to take a hike. Aragorn could have refused, but didnt. The movie makes use of the contrasting themes between Boromir and Aragorn: Boromir the man who covets the Ring and Aragorn the man who lets it go. This was a strong plot point for people who did not have the Book as background.

Aragorn is a King. The type of people that have to make grave decisions. The choices in the Book are to help the RingBearer whose Quest carries the entire future of ME, or help save two cute but otherwise expendable hobbits.

The whole action took place in moments. Catching F&S on foot would have been easier than Ugluk and his lads hotfooting across Rohan, by any method of computation.

The bottom line is the Book does not give a good motivation for Aragorn's choice. The movie makes an attempt to do so. Being sensible, however, Aragorn should have tried to talk Frodo into his going along, even in the movie.

By the way I do not care about logic.
Make a logical argument, and then denigrate logic. Why?
 

Gothmog

Lord of Balrogs
Staff member
Joined
Sep 10, 2001
Messages
1,960
Reaction score
158
Location
Cardiff, United Kingdom
your disagreement with my opinion did not offend me. It was the manner that did so.
and do not admit what is really in the book.
Since my interpretation of the story is as valid as anybody else's, this comment is an unwarrented attack on my inteligence as is your later comment for me to "Get Real".

Yes I know that he could have gone after Frodo and chose not to. That was his choice. Since I did not use logic to follow the plot I Felt that his choice in the book was right.

Make a logical argument, and then denigrate logic. Why?
You 2 are guilty of illogic.
I do not worry about trying to make things Logical. I am happy if they make sense.
 

Snaga

The Usual Suspect
Joined
Feb 11, 2002
Messages
2,261
Reaction score
5
Aragorn in the film chose to let Frodo go alone. Frodo "outranked" him as the RingBearer and told him to take a hike. Aragorn could have refused, but didnt. The movie makes use of the contrasting themes between Boromir and Aragorn: Boromir the man who covets the Ring and Aragorn the man who lets it go. This was a strong plot point for people who did not have the Book as background.
Harad is right about why PJ shot the scene that way, but to me that scene was wierd. Because Frodo says 'Can you protect me from yourself?' as his reasoning for telling Aragorn he is going alone. Aragorn says yes and closes Frodo's hand rather than taking the ring. Then shrugs and lets him go. I was thinking... its that it? Aren't you going to discuss this. Only 5 minutes earlier Gimli is bemoaning the difficulties of crossing Emyn Muil and the Marshes and Aragorn is saying 'Such is our path' - i.e. we're all going that way so live with it. Then there's Frodo saying, actually I'm going on my own - and scarcely even mentioning that Boromir's tried to take the ring. And he doesn't put up an argument. There's a world of difference between not taking the ring, and just letting Frodo walk off on his own. Luckily, the audience is saved from having to get their heads round this weird chain of events by the timely arrival of the Uruk-Hai.

In the book at least there is a good reason for Aragorn to choose to let Frodo go: he's got two hobbits to rescue; and anyway he originally wasn't planning to go all the way to Mordor. You are entitled to think he did the wrong thing, but at least he has an alternative course of action. In the film he just decides he's not needed any more. If the Uruk-Hai hadn't turned up, presumably he'd just get in his boat and head back north to Rivendell. No wonder Elrond has such contempt for him!;)
 
H

Harad

Guest
Nonononono,

In the Book Aragorn always says he would prefer to go to Minas Tirith, assuming I guess, that Gandalf would take care of the Quest. Without Gandalf he is OBLIGATED to take care of the Quest. All sympathy aside, M&P are expendable compared with job 1: The Quest.

In the Movie, in the end of the scene, Aragorn has to make the same decision as the Book (please go away NPWs--not that they read my posts anymore--hah!). The movie makes an attempt, perhaps it fails, TO MOTIVATE, Aragorns decision.

The decision in the Book, rescuing the expendable M&P vs. taking care of the Quest is an eyebrow raiser. In the Movie, the Ringbearer tells Aragorn "go away" so he might as well, a moment later, rescue M&P.

Would YOU vote for a King, who if the choices were:

1. rescue 2 cute cuddly hobbits.
2. support a Quest to save the world

chose 1?
 

Bill the Pony

Registered User
Joined
Dec 12, 2001
Messages
188
Reaction score
1
Originally posted by Harad
The decision in the Book, rescuing the expendable M&P vs. taking care of the Quest is an eyebrow raiser.
Harad, if I remember right, Grond (or someone else, don't remember, sorry if I misquote someone) already answered this question in one of its previous incarnations. Let's assume for a moment that Aragorn went with S&F, and that, even though he himself did not know the way, he would somehow be better at hiding and finding an entrance than S&F by themselves. This is a plausible scenario. Now what happens 'at the other end'. M&P reach Saruman, are tortured, and in no time tell Saruman about the plan to destroy the Ring. Granted, Saruman still does not know what route Frodo is taking, but if the plan is to destroy the ring, I think he would consider the most direct route. What would Saruman do? I guess he would send spies, orcs, or maybe himself towards Mordor, trying to find Frodo. The chance of being found when someone is actively looking for you is higher than when you are somewhere where nobody expects you.
And what would happen with Sauron? I guess Saruman would not tell him what he's up to, but there is a chance that Sauron notices the high activity of Saruman in his area. An option is: capture a Saruman Orc, torture him: "what are you doing here" "eeuh looking for someone who is trying to sneak into mordor sir" "hmm, maybe I should guard my borders more carefully". Resulting in another increase of the chance of detection.

So Aragorn had to choose: letting M&P get tortured and increase the risk detection of F&S by a large fraction, despite him being there to help, or trying to rescue M&P, so that people won't be looking for F&S, so that, even though he's not there, they may find a way into Mordor. Seen in this light (which again is not my answer, but I got it from one of the wise members of the board), his decision is not as much of an eyebrow raiser as you make it sound.

Then there are the other two reasons more explicitly mentioned in the books: (1) the need for a diversion: pick a fight with Sauron, so that the ringbearer has a bigger chance to enter and destroy the ring. Who could do that better than Aragorn? This plan is mentioned by Gandalf, if i remeber right, but it may be the Aragorn himself figured it out too.
And finally Aragorn's intuition (my heart speaks clearly or something to that effect). If you want logic, this is a moot argument, but some people make decisions based on intuition, rather than logic.
 

Thorin

LOTR Purist to the end
Joined
Aug 20, 2001
Messages
1,402
Reaction score
15
Well said, Bill.

Aragorn knew that the orcs that took M&P were Saruman's orcs, with him knowing Saruman's treachery it didn't take a rocket scientist to figure out what Saruman's intentions were and the possible devestating consequences it could bring....Going after them wasn't just about saving M&P from torture and death, but it put the whole quest in jeopardy if they were found out....Gandalf and Elrond made it quite plain that the quest's success was secrecy... Frodo left without telling them for the reason that Frodo didn't want them on the trip. Add to that the pressing circumstances shows that this was something Aragorn felt he needed to respect...If he went after them, he probably knew that it would end up being what the movie portrayed: that Frodo felt he needed to go alone and Aragorn's effort to battle the enemy were better used elsewhere. So the movie basically came to the conclusion that Tolkien might have eventually: that Frodo felt he needed to go alone. They chose to show this rather than what did actually happen...

Once again, Tolkien new what he was doing when he wrote the scene he did, and he (and Aragorn) is vindicated despite Harad's continual attempt to force his own logic on the issues to discredit him....

Walk away from this one with your head held high, Harad...We'll still respect you.:)
 
H

Harad

Guest
Sorry,

Doesnt knowing the whole rest of the story, make decisions for characters SO much easier?

For, me the decision he had to make, had to be made at the time in question. Help the Ringbearer as he had vowed to do, or help M&P.

Why dont you you both be consistent? Since he knows all about what Saruman is up to, and how the story is going to proceed, he should also know that Eomer will stop Ugluk, rescue M&P, thus leading to the Ent thread and on and on. His chase after M&P was in fact of no value, in terms of rescuing M&P.

But no, your "consistency" only goes so far as to justify your conclusions, no further.

And what about all the other things that happen? Incredibly people argue, then Aragorn couldnt have confronted Sauron with the Palantir. What a goshdurn genius Aragorn was, to anticipate that Saruman would be defeated, that Grima would throw down the Palantir, that Pippen would pick it up, and that Aragorn would use it to confront Sauron. All because he decided to abandon the Ring Bearer.

Laughable!

And now that we are arguing on LOGICAL grounds--how else to argue??--except notice how so many of your posts end with, "and if its not logical, so what? I never cared for logic anyway."

hehehehe

Let me hold your feet to the fire with regards to what Aragorn knew about Saruman. He knew from Gandalf that Saruman was looking for the Ring for HIS OWN SAKE. Ironically, the movie is a huge disappointment to NPWs who think that this theme is omitted by PG. So dont forget it now. So Aragorn could conclude, if he figures out your torture scenario, that Saruman might find out about the Ring and might get really P-Oed, but since the Ring is going to Morrdorr, Saruman cant do a blessed thing about it. Aragorn doesnt know anything about Saruman working for Sauron, and in fact he wasnt!, nor does he know about Saruman communicating with him. So why should he worry except for the potential harm to M&P.

If you REALLY want to be sensible why not send Legolas (and Gimli) after the Orc-party. 2 against 100 orcs is as good as 3. Then Aragorn could do what he was being paid for, and help save Middle Earth via the Quest, and directly right the wrong that his ancestor Isildur had done.

Sense, sense, and sense say that Aragorn should support the IMMEDIATE threat to the Ring--that Frodo might run into trouble--not a POTENTIAL threat to the Ring--that M&P through a chain of reasoning that Aragorn has no access to, could endanger the Ring.

Me give in? Hah!
 

Snaga

The Usual Suspect
Joined
Feb 11, 2002
Messages
2,261
Reaction score
5
If you REALLY want to be sensible why not send Legolas (and Gimli) after the Orc-party. 2 against 100 orcs is as good as 3. Then Aragorn could do what he was being paid for, and help save Middle Earth via the Quest, and directly right the wrong that his ancestor Isildur had done.
That has some appeal, although I can't see the last 3 wanting to split up particularly. There are two parts to this argument: (1) does the book make sense and (2) does the film make sense.
You guys are debating the book, so I'll stick to my guns on the movie.

In the movie, NOONE is going to Minas Tirith. Not even Boromir. There is no dissension about where to go next, no thought of splitting up. Up to this point they are all happy campers, about to head east to Mordor.

5 minutes later Aragorn is saying: OK Frodo off you go on your own. The rest of us will all go home. The only rationale - perhaps the ring will tempt Aragorn. But Aragorn has clearly refuted this fear on Frodo's part. There is no plan B at this point for Aragorn. He was never going to Minas Tirith. M&P are not yet captured. Aragorn's choice is: Do I let Frodo go alone, or do I try to convince him to trust me and offer some help. What he does is to say 'You can trust me, now off you go.' Maybe you don't agree with Aragorn in the book, but there are options for him to weigh up. In the movie there are none.

Yes, after Boromir's funeral there is theoretically the same choice. But Aragorn has already made his mind up previously, when he meets Frodo on Amon Hen. The decision is made earlier than in the book. In the film, Aragorn is going to drink ale in the Prancing Pony, since having abandoned the quest, he won't be welcome in Rivendell any more.
 

Thorin

LOTR Purist to the end
Joined
Aug 20, 2001
Messages
1,402
Reaction score
15
Harad,

Keep in mind that Saruman's treachery with taking the hobbits can only lead to trouble no matter what the case...Gandalf said at CoE concerning Saruman. "You reach out your hand to me but all I percieve is cold finger of Mordor." I don't believe that Saruman was a lacky of Sauron that the movie portrays, but that Sauron was using Saruman is not doubted in my mind. I think Aragorn would know that somehow Sauron would find out and all his focus would be on Saruman and Mordor's borders...There are infinite possibilities and all of them grim as to what could happen if the hobbits and the company were found out to any degree...
 

Thread suggestions

Top