Main      Site Guide    
At-A-Glance Film Reviews

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)

(aka: The Return of the King)



Reviews and Comments

I am reluctant to compare the different episodes of Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings trilogy with each other, because they are best experienced together, as a single unit. But for the record, the final chapter is a step up from the flawed but still excellent second chapter. The Return of the King chronicles the final wars with the forces of Sauron and Frodo's increasingly arduous and harrowing journey to Mount Doom with a powerful emotional punch. The acting is incredible; in particular, Sean Astin's performance as Frodo's dedicated manservant is of Oscar caliber. The battle scenes are breathtaking, a visceral ride and a stimulus to the imagination at the same time. Amidst the spectacle are more intimate moments that are just as captivating. The character of Gollum, for example, is a masterful technological accomplishment, but this never once upstages the heart of the character or upsets the focus of the story. The interrelationships between Frodo, Sam, and Gollum -- one of the most compelling, complex character triangles in literature -- is brought to life on the screen with immensely satisfying results.

While the trilogy has its share of minor flaws (fewer in the third episode than in its predecessors), this trilogy is nonetheless one of the grandest accomplishments ever made in film and will be remembered for generations.

Series Entries

Related Films