|    back to  The Houses of Healing
On Guard   |   Just Another Dream?   |   Just Another Dream? (continued)   |   Gandalf?   |   "...the pure sound of merriment"   |   The last time we saw...   |   Together Again   |   Pure Emotion   |   "Gimli"   |   Speechless   |   "Aragorn"   |   Unseen   |   Finally getting to the point...

On Guard


First, a brief transition that doesn't have much to do with the rest of what we're going to look at, but sure is pretty...







Except for those three pictures, I've cropped all the frames in this first shot exactly the same - and just enough so that my sitebuilding program will show them at full size (it reduces any image more than 800 pixels wide). I won't be cropping every shot in this scene, but in this one getting Frodo's face a little larger is worth cutting off the sides. This is another long, lingering camera shot; it'll take us a couple of pages to get through it. It's also very good scrolling material, so all of the commentary will be at either the top or bottom of the page, with links to some of the pics mentioned.

When I start making one of these individual scene sections for the site, I often use one I've already made as a template. When beginning to build this one on the Amon Hen pages, I noticed that my first statement there was how trusting movie-Frodo seems to be of Boromir. But between that scene and this one,  movie-Frodo's been through two movies and several lifetimes and is anything but trusting of an unexpected occurrence. After all, the last time he woke up in an unknown place, it was the tower of Cirith Ungol. The sunshine and the chirping of birds don't mean it's safe.

From frame 2, when he first begins to open his eyes, until 17, all that moves is his eyes. But they do move, taking in all of the location he can see without turning his head. If he's a prisoner he doesn't want his captors to realize he's awake any sooner than necessary (a similar reaction to the one he had when first waking in Cirith Ungol). From frame 17 to 25, he still doesn't move very much: just turning his head and slightly shifting his left hand. His right hand stays motionless on his chest until 25.

When I tried to figure out why I thought he was wary in the first part of this shot, rather than simply weak and tired, I decided it had a lot to do with the set of his mouth, which stays closed, straight, and expressionless until he makes the decision to move his right hand - that is, until he decides to sit up. From that point on, we begin seeing some of Frolijah's slightly open-mouthed, vulnerable look.

In the last few frames on this page, it almost looks as if he's forgotten how to sit up and has to figure out the dynamics.  From how active he is just a few moments later, it doesn't seem that he should be too weak to sit up easily. But, actually, the position he's in doesn't make sitting up simple. Rather than just lying in bed, he's propped up on a large pillow. The impression is that someone's purposely elevated his upper body. The following is pure speculation as far as any plans of the people making the movie, but it makes medical sense: After Frodo and Sam were flown away from the molten lava and noxious fumes, the thing most likely to kill them was almost certainly dehydration. It's dangerous to give fluids orally to an unconscious person, but in their case it would have been much more dangerous not to.  In the days before IVs, orally was the only option. In that situation, of course, you'd elevate the person's upper body, so that would have been Frodo's most likely position in bed.

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17  
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25  
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33  
34
35

A good detail is that Frodo's "hospital gown" fits him relatively well here, as opposed to the one in Rivendell which was too large. There are children in Minas Tirith, so there are some hobbit-sized nightshirts around.


Next page