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Sci-Fi & Fantasy > Dramatizations

Dramatizations

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Bryan J. Peterson

Bryan J. Peterson Twin Falls, Idaho United States Listener Since 2006

I'm not blind drunk, I'm just blind.

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  • "The quality continues."

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As I said I wasn't made aware of the BBC's dramatization of Lord of the Rings until 2001, twenty years after its initial release. And even then I wasn't aware of the anniversary edition which added the opening and closing narrations by Frodo. But as I said it was a much better version than the NPR Playhouse version. Granted I do still somewhat enjoy that one, but after hearing this one I must conclude that it' is far superior. And of course it's far better than the films, as good as those admittedly were.
    One thing I like about this version is that it stays more or less true to the characters as described in the book, which the films didn't always do.. A notable example is Treebeard. In the NPR playhouse version he was voiced by Tom Luce with a rather annoying echo effect added. Needless to say it made hm sound rather campy. In the films he was hostile towards the Hobbits at first and made them aware of Gandalf's survival long before they learned of it in the book. Here, actor Steven Thorn gives him a commanding yet somewat mischievous quality that I always did perceive in the character. And the Ents have a cool marching song which I'm sure was in the novel but here is excellently presented.
    In short I don't think I stopped listening to this any longer than was absolutely necessary, such as for meal and bathroom breaks. But then back to it I went. And now that Audible has them I can carry them with me on my IPod anytime, which should come in useful particularly for long trips in the car. And tense or scary parts of the story really come off as tense or scary here, which is definitely a good thing! Excellent music and SFX combined with an excellent cast bring this tale fabulously to life. It's definitely worth the credits or the money.

    More

    The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers (Dramatised)

    • ORIGINAL (4 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By J. R. R Tolkien
    • Narrated By Ian Holm, Michael Hordern, Robert Stephens
    Overall
    (485)
    Performance
    (236)
    Story
    (237)

    A BBC radio full-cast dramatisation of the second book in JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy. Brian Sibley's famous 1981 adaptation, starring Ian Holm and Michael Hordern, has been divided into three corresponding parts, with newly recorded beginning and end narration by Ian Holm.

    Bryan J. Peterson says: "The quality continues."
  • "Excellent."

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Return of the King picks up right where Two Towers left off. After accidentally revealing himself to Sauron via the Palantir of Orthanc, Pippin is taken to the city of Minas Tirith by Gandalf, who suspects that Sauron's next move may be to target that city. Meri is put in the care of King Theoden of Rohan. Aragorn, Gimley and Legolas go in search of the mysterious Paths of the Dead, a haunted road which provides the only chance Aragorn has of reaching Minas Tirith before the city is lost. And Sam Gamgee embarks on a desperate mission to rescue Frodo who, left comatose by Shelob's venomous sting, was subsequently discovered by a band of Orc soldiers, though fortunately not before Sam, mistaking Frodo for dead and resolving to see the quest through to its end on his own if possible, took the Ring from his friend. But even if he succeeds, only time will tell whether they'll have the strength to see the quest through to its ultimate end, much less whether that end will come on Mount Doom with the destruction of the Ring.
    As with the first two installments, the BBC did an excellent job on this one. Ian Holm does an excellent job of conveying the terrible changes the ordeal has wrought in Frodo, and definitely leagues better than Elijah Wood's rather wussy performance in the films. Peter Woodthorpe is the perfect combination of scary and pathetic in his portrayal of Gollum. So all in all this is an excellent production surpassed only by the Rob Inglis narrated unabridged productions, which Audible has finally made available. So if you haven't given this production a listen you might just be in for a good time.

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    The Lord Of The Rings: The Return of the King (Dramatised)

    • ORIGINAL (3 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By J. R. R Tolkien
    • Narrated By Ian Holm, Michael Hordern, Robert Stephens
    Overall
    (425)
    Performance
    (197)
    Story
    (200)

    A BBC radio full-cast dramatisation of the third book in JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy. Brian Sibley's famous 1981 adaptation, starring Ian Holm and Michael Hordern, has been divided into three corresponding parts, with newly recorded beginning and end narration by Ian Holm.

    hannah says: "Fantastic climax to the trilogy"
  • "Absolutely excellent."

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've been a fan of the Lord of the Rings for about twenty years now, ever since the age of eleven. It wasn't until I was 21, however, that I learned of this particular production. This production, quite frankly, beats the crap out of the 1979 NPR Playhouse version. The music in this production is absolutely excellent and the cast is amazing. Michael Hordern plays the sort of Gandalf I would feel comfortable trusting my life to. Robert Stevens' no-nonsense portrayal of Aragorn is also what I would have expected. It's much better than Viggo Mortensen's Hollywood influenced portrayal. Don't mistake me. I was very impressed with the movies over all and in fact I own them. But I didn't like how Peter Jackson changed certain things and explicitly went against Tolkien's writings in so doing. This radiodrama is extremely faithful to the novels, lacking only the Tom Bombadil section. It also expands on the events that led to Sauron's discovering the truth of the Ring's continued existence, even showing a bit of Gollum's torture at the hands of the Mouth of Sauron.
    All in all I really enjoyed this production, particularly the newer version which includes extra material at the beginning and end of each novel. And rather than detracting from the story this new material (consisting of opening and closing narration by Ian Holm as Frodo), sets the stage for the next presentation and then refreshes the listener's memory about how the prior one ended. Combine excellent acting with generally high quality sound effects with excellently-composed music and you have a program well worth your time. The only odd effect I can find is that the horses of the Nine sound more like tapdancers' shoes. The cast, however, was excellently chosen. And I really liked how Ian Holm, who plays Frodo here, later went on to star as the aging Bilbo in the film trilogy. So if you haven't already you should give this one a go. You might just be in for a good tim

    More

    The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (Dramatised)

    • ORIGINAL (4 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By J. R. R Tolkien
    • Narrated By Ian Holm, Michael Hordern, Robert Stephens
    Overall
    (756)
    Performance
    (355)
    Story
    (364)

    A BBC radio full-cast dramatisation of the first book in JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy. Brian Sibley's famous 1981 adaptation, starring Ian Holm and Michael Hordern, has been divided into three corresponding parts, with newly recorded beginning and end narration by Ian Holm.

    Erin says: "Dramitization"
  1. The Lord Of The Rings: Th...
  2. The Lord Of The Rings: Th...
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Erin

Erin United States 03-23-10 Member Since 2009
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  • "Dramitization"

    16 of 17 helpful votes

    For what it is, it is brilliantly done. I'm just too fond of this story (the whole story) to be fully content with an abridged rendition.

    That said, I take less exception to what was cut/changed (text and content-wise) in this version than some of the things done in the 2001 film. One of my favourite moments is the Fords of Bruinen as it was written, and that spirit is kept in this dramatization.

    Five stars for dramatization, but only four as 'The Fellowship of the Ring' since it is missing so very much. It seems 'Fellowship' is usually the part of the trilogy that is cut down the most for dramatization.

    More

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    • By J. R. R Tolkien
    • Narrated By Ian Holm, Michael Hordern, Robert Stephens
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    Erin says: "Dramitization"

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    One moment Joseph Schwartz is a happily retired tailor in 1949 Chicago. The next he's a helpless stranger on Earth during the heyday of the first Galactic Empire. Earth, he soon learns, is a backwater, just a pebble in the sky, despised by all the other 200 million planets of the Empire because its people dare to claim it's the original home of man. And Earth is poor, with great areas of radioactivity ruining much of its soil - so poor that everyone is sentenced to death at the age of sixty. Joseph Schwartz is sixty-two.

  • An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas  by Ambrose Bierce, Robert Enrico Narrated by Christian Stolte

    An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas

    • ORIGINAL (49 mins)
    • By Ambrose Bierce, Robert Enrico
    • Narrated By Christian Stolte
    Overall
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    A Confederate spy is spared death when the rope meant to hang him miraculously breaks. Or does it?

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  • 2012: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas  by Steve Nubie Narrated by Stacy Keach, Christian Stolte

    2012: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas

    • ORIGINAL (41 mins)
    • By Steve Nubie
    • Narrated By Stacy Keach, Christian Stolte
    Overall
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    (0)
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    Two brothers argue about yet another end of the worldprediction only to discover that this time it's for real - but not quite asexpected.

  • Execution: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas  by Rod Serling, George Clayton Johnson Narrated by Don Johnson

    Execution: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas

    • ORIGINAL (38 mins)
    • By Rod Serling, George Clayton Johnson
    • Narrated By Don Johnson
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    A murdering cowboy from the old west is transported to the present day by a scientist just as he's about to be hung. He has a second chance in a new world, but will his thirst for blood be quenched?

  • Two: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas  by Montgomery Pittman Narrated by Don Johnson

    Two: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas

    • ORIGINAL (43 mins)
    • By Montgomery Pittman
    • Narrated By Don Johnson
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    Two opposing survivors of a world war learn to put aside their differences and start a new and better world together.

  • The Bewitchin' Pool: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas  by Earl Hamner Narrated by Karen Black

    The Bewitchin' Pool: The Twilight Zone Radio Dramas

    • ORIGINAL (39 mins)
    • By Earl Hamner
    • Narrated By Karen Black
    Overall
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    Performance
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    Two children of divorcing parents escape through a magical portal in their pool, into a peaceful world for children.