If you've seen the movies and tried reading the books only to find the pages of descriptive writing a little too much, this is what you're looking for. On the other hand I personally love Tolkien's books and still find the play to be wonderfully imagined and executed. The music is beautiful and the acting superb.
Someone said that this was an unabridged dramatization... the entire audiobook however, is only 4,3 hours long. This is not just abridged, this is pretty much a scam.
This production is an abridged dramatization of The Lord of the Rings series which covers all the main elements of the story with great detail (on par with the Peter Jackson film series). As with the film series the biggest thing left out is the encounter with Tom Bombadil.
Due to turning descriptive passages into sound effects and voice acting, this is much shorter than the actual audiobook, but a true telling of the story nonetheless.
One of the best things about listening to this version of the story is they included most of the poems and songs that Tolkien wrote in the books being sung beautifully.
My only criticism is a small one. Due to the way it was recorded the volume balance between high sounds and low is wide, and loud/high pitch sounds sometimes crackle my headphones. This issue is minor enough that it doesn't make this any less desirable to listen to.
This rendition of Fellowship suffers greatly from sparse narration. It would be completely indecipherable without having first read the book. The voice acting was fine but I wasn't happy with choice in voice actors for a given part. Could have used more sound effects as well I suppose. Odd choice in abridgment. Like the Hobbit movie they spent far too much time in the shire at the beginning.
If you're new to the Lord of the Rings trilogy, this BBC dramatization is an excellent introduction. While some events did get dropped, on the whole, the BBC stayed faithful to the core of the story.
To use an analogy, I'd compare this to stopping somewhere for a quick bite on your way home from work. But if you have time after work for a full dinner, the unabridged narration by Rob Inglis is the best.
Both of these versions have their place, and you can't go wrong with either one.
Heart and brains, this covers The first book of LOTR so well. The hobbits are mature and realized far better than the movies.
Best of both worlds. Delivers some expanded plot points from War of the Ring, but ignores Tom Bombidil. I loved Samwise Gamgee. Aragorn, Butterbur. I believe that format engages the listener perfectly.
Siamese, and I don't mean to dismiss anybody, but Sam is everyman. To me the story is built around him as a focus point. Gollum is quite good. I don't mean to neglect Ian Holm. Sam shines through.
Wanted it all in one versus having to buy three volumes separately. Also additional material nice but not needed.