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The Lord of the Rings (1978 Animated Movie) [Blu-ray] (2010)

Christopher Guard , William Squire , Ralph Bakshi  |  PG |  Blu-ray
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (519 customer reviews)

List Price: $29.99
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Blu-ray 1978 Animated Movie $12.30  
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The Lord of the Rings (1978 Animated Movie) [Blu-ray] + The Hobbit : The 1977 Animated Classic + The Return of the King Deluxe Edition
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Product Details

  • Actors: Christopher Guard, William Squire, John Hurt
  • Directors: Ralph Bakshi
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Animated, Color, Widescreen, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby TrueHD 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 1.0), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: April 6, 2010
  • Run Time: 134 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (519 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001PQZYR2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,226 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Lord of the Rings (1978 Animated Movie) [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Special Features

Forging Through the Darkness: The Ralph Bakshi Vision for The Lord of the Rings

Editorial Reviews

Controversial animator Ralph Bakshi's literal adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's classic fantasy trilogy, The Lord of the Rings, is brought to the screen. An evil sorcerer from a previous era created a magical ring which enables its users to call upon its tremendous powers to rule the world, but it inevitably warps them to evil. It was believed lost, but during a resurgence of magical evil in the world, Bilbo, a simple, plain-spoken hobbit, recovers it from its hiding place. The forces of good give his nephew Frodo the choice to bear the awful burden of the ring to a place where it may be destroyed.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
92 of 93 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Give Bakshi a break... June 23, 2006
This film was considered cutting edge for its time. Ralph Bakshi was a top class animated filmmaker, having directed such great films like Fritz the Cat and Heavy Traffic. Watching this in the theater when I was a mere youngin I really liked it. I found it really interesting. Now, of course, Peter Jackson's versions are much better than this, but he had CGI and millions of dollars more than Bakshi did. It is blatantly unfair to trash Bakshi without acknowledging this film was made in 1978. It does end abruptly (it covers 1 1/2 books), mainly because they were hoping to do a sequel (needless to say, they never did). It has good atmosphere, great vocal performances by a British cast, great score, and the animation is very good. The rotoscoping isn't the greatest, but they still use this technique (Waking Life) today. Bakshi did what he could with the technology he had, and I think he did a damn good job....
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84 of 96 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting for fans; non-fans will be confused. December 24, 2001
When I was 7, my Aunt Bobby took me to see Ralph Bakshi's animated Lord of the Rings at the Zigfield Theater in Manhattan. I will always remember sitting in that cavernous theater, watching the amazing story of Middle-Earth unfold, and just generally being amazed by the lushly colored animation on the gigantic screen. SO.....bear in mind as you read this that I will always have a soft spot in my heart for this much-maligned film.
That was over 20 years ago, and I think I've seen this movie once since then, so when it was released on DVD I eagerly snapped it up. So how does it hold up to the childhood memories?
Pretty good, actually.
The story is basically the same as in the book: The Hobbit Frodo is joined by eight companions in a quest to destroy the evil Ring of Sauron. The characters and locales look pretty much as one would imagine from reading the books. (This movie adapts The Fellowship of the Ring & half of The Two Towers.) I had a problem with Strider and Boromir trudging through feet of snow in nothing but their little dresses, though.....bundle up, guys!
The scenery is by turns lush (The Shire), and forbidding (The excellent Mines of Moria sequence). The problems were pretty much all the same: Bakshi's use of "Rotoscoping", or filming real actors and drawing over them. The rotoscoped portions just don't fit with the rest of the movie, and it can be QUITE jarring to look at. (Check out how all of the Orcs seem to have just 2 kinds of faces.....couldn't they at least have made different masks to film the Orc actors in????) Also troubling (in a very minor way...) was how "Saruman" was pronounced "Aruman" about half the time.
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29 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bakshi's Best Work August 11, 2001
By A Customer
Given the other animated works of Ralph Bakshi, he seems a fairly unlikely candidate as director of the first film version of "The Lord of the Rings." "Fire and Ice" and "Wizards," for example, are heavy-handed, crude, and sexually frustrated - and that's not even touching down on some of his OTHER work. And yet, almost surprisingly, his vision of Tolkien's epic is possessed of the spirit of the books around which it is based.
The voice-overs are all spectacular, and the rotoscoped animation gives the characters a life that animation seldom possesses - though there are those who would argue that point, most assuredly. The animation is also suitably dark and grim, though this also translates into a visual problem, for even places that SHOULD look fair and beautiful - such as Rivendell or Lothlorien - tend to be almost gloomy and ominous. When the Fellowship enters the dark halls of Moria, however, Bakshi is in top form.
This adaptation attempts to make a single film out of "The Fellowship of the Ring" and over half of "The Two Towers," which is obviously a mistake. Because of this, there are several changes to the story that we Tolkien zealots so adore, and sometimes beloved moments are lopped out entirely. This happens most in the beginning of the film when the hobbits are on the road and making toward Bree. There is no Tom Bombadil and no fog on the Barrow Downs here (nor will there be in the upcoming Peter Jackson film, alas!). And just when you expect to see the battle with Shelob, the movie ends most abruptly without completing the narrative. A pity.
Still, Bakshi does manage to deliver a good (if not excellent), well-animated, well-acted film version of fantasy's most beloved classic.
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35 of 42 people found the following review helpful
First of all I must tell you, if you already own this Ralph Bakshi's monumental animated classic Lord of the Rings (LOR) on Standard DVD and you are satisfied, have an opinion seen it, been there done that. Go no further. Duplication/upgrade is a waste period.


OKAY NOW, WHY DID I GIVE THIS "FIVE STAR RATING"? SHORT HISTORY of LOR animation and movie evolvement (in the 1970's). Hollywood up until Ralph Bakshi couldn't fathom the monumental task in bring this epic to the screen in a 3-4 hour movie. The cost and locations plus the unique history, races, weapontry etc unimaginable.

In 1978 Ralph Bakshi obtained the movie rights of LOR and figured on a limited budget with the cel animation enhanced with "ROTOSCOPE" (live action sequences with cel animated tracing and coloring. Giving us Smooth accurate movement of figures)) he could bring this epic to the big screen.

REMEMBER this was 1978 before computers, CGI this was revolutionary!!!

NOTE: 1970's animation was bad and studios were going broke. Lord of the Rings release inspired the animators to create and be more imaginative.

This 1978 Widescreen Classic was shown only in the best theaters, reserved seating only. Exclusive showings, master programs and LOR memorabilia was being sold. This movie made alot of money!!!! (I can remember standing line to purchase a ticket for a later viewing, days later!!)

WELL NOW!!!!!!!!! For the first time you experience or re-experience that THEATER EXCITEMENT once again in your BLU-RAY Home Theater with Dolby Digital Sound. WOW!!!! This is fun stuff!!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Enjoyed it Greatly, liked the animation style and story better than the Return!
Published 8 days ago by EDEN GARDEN SUPPLY
3.0 out of 5 stars decent
Decent show. Misses out on a few things from the book but overall does a fairly good job telling the story. Outdated visual effects that go to show how far the movie biz has come. Read more
Published 10 days ago by kip little
5.0 out of 5 stars Great price, love the front cover
Great price, love the front cover. My Blue Ray version has the original poster but this one makes it for a great collection.
Published 26 days ago by Cesar
4.0 out of 5 stars "Wizards"
With the recently remastered releases of "The Hobbit" (1977) and "The Return of the King" (1980) is was fun to revisit this unique "Deluxe" adaption of Middle-earth. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Bowman
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by Brandon Suttles
5.0 out of 5 stars I happen to rank this movie version of the Middle ...
I happen to rank this movie version of the Middle Earth books at as one of the top 100 motion pictures ever created.
Published 1 month ago by King James Bible Ministries International
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by fhdjhfo
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay not Great
Okay movie for watching with smaller kids but of course not anything compatible to the latest non animated versions
Published 1 month ago by Jerry D. Bicknell
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
only half the story
Published 1 month ago by jim
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
great timeless Tolkien rules ive been a student of Tolkien since 1970
Published 1 month ago by brandon d baur
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