The new biopic features the story of the young years of EYG Hall of Famer J.R.R. Tolkien and the lead up to his writing of The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
This biopic deals with Tolkien as a youth and how he formed a group of friends at school who would become the basis for the Fellowship from his novels.
I enjoyed watching how these four students came together despite differing backgrounds and class over their shared love for the arts, even though some of them had to hide that love from parents. The interactions with the foursome was great as you really see how strong a connection these four boys had leading to their lives as young men.
We also get shots of Tolkien during World War I, when many of the images of the horrific battles with dragons and monster and the evil of Sauron would come into view for the author.
There is a love story between Tolkien (played wonderfully by Nicholas Hoult) and Edith (Lily Collins). The love story was not my favorite part of the movie as it felt more like a distraction from what the movie really was about and that was about how J.R.R. Tolkien wound up creating Middle Earth and all the wild language that goes with it.
In fact, the scenes with Hoult and his professor (Derek Jacobi) were some of the most compelling of the film and I would not have minded more of those. The scenes in World War I were very moving as well as the Germans were clearly cast as the evil hordes of Mordor. Some of the CGI here was really well done and beautiful to look at.
I was quite engaged by the film Tolkien and I enjoyed the story it was telling. While I may not have loved the Edith parts, I thought Lily Collins was very good as Tolkien’s lady love. The relationship between the four boys that lead to such an inspiration of artistic creativity and a friendship strong enough to survive almost anything is the best part of the movie.