I know that several of you may not have agreed with my previous article regarding the superiority of the 1980s hit Willow to the 2000s hit Lord of the Rings. Despite my proof, I feel it necessary to continue my quest to prove that Lord of the Rings is just a knock off. So, without further delay, here are ten reasons why the 1985 classic "Legend" is better than "Lord of the Rings."
1) Real Fairy Tale: Unlike Lord of the Rings, this film actually feels like a fairy tale. A young boy falls in love, and must save the world from the dark lord of the underworld. Though this is similar to the concept of the Lord of the Rings, a young Tom Cruise and Mia Sara come off as much more pure. The monsters, both good and bad are diverse, rather than LotR, where thousands of extras dressed in the same suit to film hours of unnecessary overhead flying scenes to make up for its unoriginality.
2) Gritty as Well: Though Legend comes off as a sweet fairy tale about saving the last unicorn, death has not been removed. Goblins and demons much be dispatched as well. However, unlike LotR, there are no campy lines like "stuck pig" or borderline emo-friendships. Everyone is in the same sinking boat, and must work together to stop the devil. In LotR, Frodo has to throw a ring in lava. That's it. Nothing more.
3) Unicorn Vs Ring: It's a dumb ring. How many times do we have to look down at Frodo's hand as he ponders the ring's power? Unlike Legend, the ring only represents power. The unicorn represents not only the power of light, but the life force as well. There's actually something at stake if the unicorn is killed. The ring, as is told at the beginning of the tale, spent hundreds of years just sitting in a river. Where's the importance?
4) Bad Guy in Legend is more Kick-ass: In Legend, Jack is pit against the lord of Darkness, a tall monstrous demon with horns and weapons. In LotR, we're pit against a giant, immobile burning eyeball. What's more, the eyeball was CGI; the Lord of Darkness was played by Tim fucking Curry.
5) Sexually Charged Love Story: Not only is the love story innocent in Legend, the relationship between Princess Lily and the Devil is somewhat sexually charged. Their passion grows, giving the Devil more character depth, displaying a true weakness (as all true bad guys have one). We are exposed to a multi faceted love story. In LotR, we're just confused and pissed off that we didn't get to see Liv's rack.
6) Legend is not over 11 hours long: I'll never get over this! 11 hours. 11 hours! At the very least, they should have made LotR a mini-series. That way, they wouldn't have had to leave out so much, leaving the audience feeling as if they've just been beaten up for lunch money back in high school. Legend clocks in at just over 90 minutes.
7) Wit: Jack has wit; Frodo is a bumbling idiot that relies on the mental strength of everyone else to save the world from darkness. Yes, I will concede that Jack was played by the regrettable Tom Cruise, but stacked against Viggo Mortensen and Elijah Wood, I think we're pretty even.
8) Director Resume: Legend was directed by Ridley Scott, who directed such films as Alien (1979), and Blade Runner (1982). Lord of the Rings was directed by Peter Jackson, who directed such films as Bad Taste (1987), The Frighteners (1996), and the painfully long remake of King Kong (2005). Game, Set, Match: Ridley Scott.
9) Legend did not rely on Computer Graphics: The producers of Legend actually built all their sets, and relied on the skill of not only the set designers, but the Director of Photography to make the shots interesting, and chilling at the same time. It was their job to make the real world look beautiful, safe and pure, while making the underworld look harsh, deadly, sharp and dark. LotR just went to New Zealand and flew around a bit in a helicopter. The rest was done in a small room with men hunched over computers, similar to Peter Jackson's usual posture.
10) The denouement: (pronounced day-no-ma, meaning the part after the climax of the story) Legend's denouement is only three to four minutes long, while Peter Jackson found it necessary to drag the audience through 50 minutes of actionless story. This would have been fine had the rest of the story been equally as detailed. Why cut corners throughout the novels, but focus so heavily on the ending. You can't make up for 10 hours of mistakes by making the last 50 minutes "really neato and special."
Well, there you have it. Legend defeats Lord of the Rings.