Lotr you shall not pass

lotr you shall not pass

Gandalf “seemed to grow tall and menacing,” Galadriel “stood before Frodo seeming now tall beyond measurement.”

By finding a way to visualize those feelings, and resisting the urge to do any more (perhaps because the production had already survived plenty of pushback), Boyens, Jackson, and Walsh made “Do not take me for a conjuror of cheap tricks” into a statement of purpose. One that went on to serve throughout the trilogy, from the smallest details of costumes to the biggest excesses of computer generated effects.

The Lord of the Rings trilogy believed in the power of Tolkien’s aesthetic to not only communicate his ideas, but to enthrall an audience.

Lotr you shall not pass

And deep inside of the line is the key to how Philippa Boyens, Peter Jackson, and Fran Walsh succeeded at adapting J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings.

The affairs of wizards

The line in question is delivered early in The Fellowship of the Ring, before the adventure has even really begun. Bilbo has just returned from his surprise party disappearance, and he and Gandalf are discussing his old ring, with the wizard very much in favor of Bilbo leaving it behind for his nephew.
Bilbo had planned to do that all along, but here in the moment he abruptly changes his mind. Gandalf’s pushing only agitates him until he finally makes a low accusation: Gandalf simply wants the ring for himself.

This produces an immediate change in the kindly old wizard, as he bellows Bilbo’s full name at him.

Lotr you shall not pass quote

He seemed to dwindle again to an old grey man, bent and troubled.

But what’s really remarkable about this tiny moment is how brilliantly Jackson brings a rather odd glimpse of Gandalf’s power to life — and how little he decided to push it to do so.

Subtle and quick to anger

The effect is actually quite simple. Jackson doesn’t even push-pull on the lens. The lighting dips, the sound of creaking timbers is added the the audio, Howard Shore’s score plays some uneasy strings. A fan flutters the candles and Bilbo’s jacket. The rest is all on Ian McKellen.

He drops his voice into his chest and doesn’t even really raise his volume, aside from the first surprising bellow of “Bilbo Baggins!” He draws his shoulders back and lets his arms hang, lengthening his silhouette — growing taller-seeming without actually growing taller.

Lord of the rings you shall not pass quote

[ Gandalf opens his eyes.]

Gandalf: “A Balrog — a demon of the ancient world.”

[The thing growls, still hidden around a corner of the vast hall, throwing fiery light on the pillars. Legolas’s eyes show fear.]

Gandalf: “This foe is beyond any of you… Run!”

[The Fellowship runs to a small doorway. Gandalf shepherds them through.]

Gandalf: “Quickly!”

[He takes a last glance behind him, and follows.]

[The Fellowship enters a passageway and goes down a flight of steps.
The flight ends in a missing segment, and Boromir nearly falls but Legolas pulls him back.]

[His torch whirls away into the vast underworld beneath.]

Aragorn: “Gandalf!”

Gandalf: “Lead them on, Aragorn! The bridge is near!”

[They look across a wide space to a long bridge spanning the gap between a hall and a cliff face.

Lord of the rings you shall not pass gif

Gandalf does not follow, but turns, looking into the wall of fire.]

[A great form of black shadow leaps through the flames, its eyes of white fire, great ash-black horns curling around a bull-like head.]

[It opens its maw, rippling heat pouring out with a rumble. Gandalf turns, running after the Fellowship. A great, black, cloven foot stomps down into the hall, bursting into flame. A narrow bridge of stone appears in the fiery light, and the Fellowship crosses the bridge.

Gandalf turns to face the Balrog.]

Gandalf: “You cannot pass!”

Frodo: “Gandalf!”

Gandalf: “I am the servant of the Secret Fire, wielder of the Flame of Anor…”

Gandalf: “The dark fire will not avail you! Flame of Udûn!”

[The Balrog strikes down on Gandalf, who parries the blow with his blade, shattering the Balrog’s sword.

Lord of the rings you shall not pass monster

Then she let her hand fall, and the light faded, and suddenly she laughed again, and lo! she was shrunken: a slender elf-woman, clad in simple white, whose gentle voice was soft and sad.

The scene does a lot with a little, which was exactly Tolkien’s approach.

Magic and meddling

Our idea of what magic looks like has (like all cinema) evolved in part from theater. And in this case, from theatrical effects and the misdirecting aesthetic of stage magicians. Which is how Fellowship introduces Gandalf, with his fireworks that amuse young and old hobbits alike — a conjuror of cheap tricks!

Tolkien was trying to do something decidedly different.

Lord of the rings you shall not pass meme

A line after the “conjuror” bit, the old wizard gives Bilbo a kindly “I’m trying to help you,” and a hug, patting his hair in the manner of a family member or intimate friend. This is the duality of Gandalf; everything you need to know about his character over all three movies, delivered in about 15 seconds.

It’s also one of the most literally translated moments in Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy. First, as in the movie, Bilbo provokes Gandalf by implying that he desires the Ring.
“But you won’t get it. I won’t give my precious away, I tell you,” he cries, and Tolkien writes “His hand strayed to the hilt of his small sword.”

Gandalf’s eyes flashed. “It will be my turn to get angry soon,” he said. “If you say that again, I shall.

Lord of the rings you shall not pass scene script

Glowing embers run off the circle of light around the wizard. The monster bellows at the wizard. Frodo gasps. Aragorn runs forward.]

Gandalf: [clenching his teeth] “Go back to the Shadow!”

[The Balrog steps onto the bridge. It brandishes a flaming whip.]

[Gandalf raises his sword and staff together into the air.]

Gandalf: “You — shall not — pass!”

[Gandalf drives his staff into the bridge, causing a bright flash of blue light to appear.
Flaring its nostrils, the Balrog steps forward onto the bridge.]

[The bridge collapses from under it as it moves towards Gandalf, and breaks before the wizard’s staff. The demon plunges backward into the chasm, still wielding its glowing whip. Gandalf, exhausted, leans on his staff and watches the Balrog fall.

Lord of the rings you shall not pass book

A huge rock falls from the ceiling and smashes through the steps behind Aragorn and Frodo, creating another gap behind them. The stairs begin to wobble.]

Aragorn: “Hang on! Lean forward!”

Legolas: “Come on!”

[They shift their weight forward, tipping the stairs across the divide and slamming them onto the steps where their companions are.]

[They leap across to safety. They run down the stairs as the stone structures collapse behind them.]

[Around a great pillar in a fiery hall comes Gandalf, leading the Fellowship.
A wall of flame whirls behind them.]

Gandalf: “Over the bridge! Fly!”

[The Fellowship flees.

Lord of the rings you shall not pass movie

Then you will see Gandalf the Grey uncloaked.” He took a step towards the hobbit, and he seemed to grow tall and menacing; his shadow filled the little room.

Bilbo backed away to the wall, breathing hard, his hand clutching at his pocket. They stood for a while facing one another, and the air of the room tingled. Gandalf’s eyes remained bent on the hobbit. Slowly his hands relaxed, and he began to tremble.

“I don’t know what has come over you, Gandalf,” he said.

“You have never been like this before. What is it all about? It is mine isn’t it? I found it, and Gollum would have killed me, if I hadn’t kept it. I’m not a thief, whatever he said.”

“I have never called you one,” Gandalf answered. “And I am not one either. I am not trying to rob you, but to help you. I wish you would trust me, as you used.” He turned away, and the shadow passed.

Mlp – lotr – you shall not pass

Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

[The Fellowship runs out the chamber into a hall of pillars. The Fellowship is closely pursued by an army of Orcs. Other Orcs spring out from the floor or crawl, like spiders, from the ceiling and down the pillars.]

[They surround the Fellowship, who have drawn their weapons outward in a circle.]

[The Orcs snarl and leer.]

[Gimli lets out a yell.

A fiery light appears at the end of a hall followed by a thunderous rumble. The Orcs flee in all directions. Gimli laughs, thinking he has scared off the Orcs.]

[The Fellowship are left alone. The weary wizard stares down the hall.]

Boromir: “What is this new devilry?”

[Gandalf does not respond for a moment.

He closes his eyes, concentrating.

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