Universal acclaim - based on 38 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 1195 Ratings

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  • Summary: In the second chapter in J.R.R Tolkien's epic trilogy, the Fellowship faces unimaginable armies and deception while also witnessing ancient wonders and the untapped strength of their people. (New Line Productions)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 38
  2. Negative: 0 out of 38
  1. Moviegoers should be almost as entranced by the teeming, glorious landscapes and dark, bloody battlegrounds of Two Towers: astonishing midpoint of an epic movie fantasy journey for the ages.
  2. 100
    Like its predecessor, The Two Towers is a great motion picture, and not to be missed by anyone who appreciates fantasy adventure.
  3. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    The miracle is that 'The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers is better: tighter, smarter, funnier.
  4. 90
    One of cinema's most absorbing fantasies.
  5. 88
    For now, The Two Towers feels like the second installment in what next year, when Frodo finally reaches Mount Doom and the story draws to a close, we'll surely be hailing as a masterpiece.
  6. Both a triumph of design and cinematic engineering and, at the same time, long, repetitious and naive.
  7. 60
    This second installment is heavy on battle sequences, which will thrill some viewers more than others.

See all 38 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 15 out of 319
  1. Aug 14, 2010
    When the "worst" movie of a trilogy is an absolute 10, then you sir, have a damn fine trilogy. This is an incredible movie from start toWhen the "worst" movie of a trilogy is an absolute 10, then you sir, have a damn fine trilogy. This is an incredible movie from start to finish, but the one drawback is that it feels like it was continued and needs continuing. The thing is, it's actually worth the ride. Expand
  2. May 20, 2014
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. It is extremely difficult to review one of your long-time favorites. This is the movie I've seen most times in a movie theater (a total of 6 times I believe), and no matter what I write in this review, it won't be enough to explain my love for this film.

    The story is split into two directions, one following Frodo and Sam's journey towards Mordor and their less than shaky relationship with Gollum/Sméagol, whom they manage to get as their guide to Mordor.

    Personally, in the books or in the movies, I've never really cared for Frodo's journey; my heart always lay with the Three Hunters (Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli). Nonetheless, as we follow Frodo's desperate struggle to take the One Ring to its doom - while avoiding it falling to the hands of its true Master - we get to meet Faramir, son of Denethor and the brother of Boromir. The first glimpse at Gondor's demise leaves little hope that when the final attack comes, they would survive (but more of that in the next movie...).

    Sam's outbursts kind of annoyed me in this film; sure, I get the hate and distrust he feels towards Gollum, whom Frodo is pitying and trying to help. It puts a strain on the relationship between all of them, which in the darkness of Mordor will twist itself into something far worse...

    Quite well balanced with the Frodo/Sam scenes we have the primary focus of this film: Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli are pursuing the Uruk-hai who took Merry and Pippin in the end of "The Fellowship of the Ring".

    As Saruman's deceit deepens, and he prepares to attack Rohan, Merry and Pippin have an important part to play - in their own way - while the Three Hunters are unexpectedly joined by an old friend and move onto Rohan to release its king from Saruman's grasp.

    Besides David Wenham as Faramir, we get to see new, wonderful characters: Karl Urban as Éomer, Miranda Otto as Éowyn, Bernard Hill as Théoden... I could go on...

    The epic battle of Helm's Deep is grim, dark and it is clear from the beginning that their hopes of winning are not very high. Not even with the addition of Galadhrim to join them (Craig Parker as Haldir returns, and I'm glad to see him, although heartbroken to see him go as well...).

    The battle scenes are brutal and thrilling. Legolas and Gimli's contest puts some lightness into it, although it is a grim race.

    "The Two Towers" is more action packed than "The Fellowship of the Ring". Perhaps that is why I like it so much better than the first movie.

    If one has to complain about something, it is the rather random scenes with Arwen. Sure, we should not forget her, and they sort of fit in, but also disrupt the balance of certain scenes. Not to mention the scene with Galadriel and Elrond; by that time the union of the two towers had been gone over at least twice by several others, and it felt like a stale repeat of what is going on - only with a slight twist. It is unlikely anyone watching the movie and paying attention would have forgotten who exactly is working with whom.

    This is an epic movie, though. Beautiful scenery, amazing score, incredible details... It all creates a world much like our own, and at the same time, nothing like ours.

    And again, if you can get your hands on the extended version - hold onto that.
  3. JeremyE.
    Apr 18, 2006
    In my opinion the best Lord of the Rings movie.
  4. Aug 9, 2011
    This isnt filming this is art..
  5. Jul 14, 2013
    Not as good as the first film, this film may feel long in some parts but it still boasts of what the first film contained: great action,Not as good as the first film, this film may feel long in some parts but it still boasts of what the first film contained: great action, adventure, fantasy, good acting, great music and stunning cinematography. I think this is the worst of the trilogy, but it still is a great film nonetheless. Expand
  6. Dec 9, 2014
    This is a spectacular film.

    Just as The Fellowship of the Ring: the opening scene is just as cool and deep as it is stunning. It's also an
    This is a spectacular film.

    Just as The Fellowship of the Ring: the opening scene is just as cool and deep as it is stunning. It's also an exiting and very well made film, and combined with awesome music from Howard Shore, couldn’t the film be better. The action in this movie is incredible to watch, and the story is spectacular! There are nothing negative with this movie except the vague CGI, but the reason why I didn’t give this film a 10 is that I want more, especially action!

    This is both a stunning, massive and deep movie.

    The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers gets a 9/10.
  7. RuisertTheMad
    Jan 18, 2003
    [***Potential Spoilers***] I loved the stunning cinematography and mountain vistas, I'd bet Jackson could do some wonderful tourism[***Potential Spoilers***] I loved the stunning cinematography and mountain vistas, I'd bet Jackson could do some wonderful tourism films for New Zealand, something a little less ambitious... Another thing that I liked was Gimli's line about dwarf wives and Aragorn's comment about the beards. It's true to the story, but it is information that's in the book, and inserted in such a way as to develop the history that otherwise would be hard to translate to a film. I wish they'd done some of that during all the travel sequences. And the cgi Gollum was pretty well done technically, but watered down scriptwise, and the (gollum,gollum) was overdone. (Fisssssh!) ...... Other than those points, it was horrible. Horrible. A lot of it boils down to some bad decision making, I think - hiring Liv Tyler for what is not just a bit part, but a minor bit part. I love her in the role, but it's extravagant unless you do as was done and rewrite major portions of the story to justify the expense. Another bad decision was building the set for Edoras. Why? For 3 or 4 scenes? What a waste. But the unforgiveable sin is the complete altering of the story line. Someone earlier mentioned pandering to your typical movie-goer's sensibilities, like not sending the women, children and old men to Dunharrow. Or Leg - O - Lamb skateboarding down the stairs shooting orcs on the way. Please. Then there's the whole loony Aragorn/Arwen sequence. Did someone really think this was an improvement over the book's storyline? Send me some of whatever it was you were taking when you made that decision, ok? Instead, we could have had the wonderful scene in Isengard where Gandalf masters Saruman with mere words and not the ludicrous pyrotechnics we were bothered with in the FotR movie. Or to quote from the TT itself 'Wizards are subtle and quick to anger'. Subtle. I'll bet that's even defined in dictionaries in New Zealand. The part I'm referring to is where Gandalf is talking to Saruman in the tower, and Saruman refuses the offer to mend his evil ways and still help, in some small way, those he was sent to help. Then Gandalf says 'Saruman, your staff is broken.', and it breaks, and his power is broken by the same force that reincarnated Gandalf. Subtle, but very dramatic if done right. And why precious, oh why, did they decide to change Halbarad and Aragorn's other Ranger kin into elfses, and then kill Halbarad in Helm's deep instead of later? Why? I'd have thought it much cooler to see riders that even the horsemen of Rohan knew were the better. One of the most dramatic moments in the second book, I think. Lastly, the final ton of hay that breaks this camel's back is the Osgiliath sequence. Faramir deciding to take Frodo to Minas Tirith, instead of showing his better intuition about the ring and allowing them to continue. Frodo offering the Ring to the Nazdrool, right there where there's no real defense to prevent it being taken. I've often wondered if the writers didn't have bad dreams after reading the Cliff Notes of the Reader's Digest Condensed Version for Dummies of the Two Towers and felt the need to rewrite it. I mean, do you really believe a commitee of people I've never heard of before could possibly re-write something that's sold millions of copies over almost 50 years and improve it? Didn't they understand that the whole game was won or lost on keeping the Ring's location and more important, final destination secret? The way the book plays it, Sauron thinks the Ring is in Aragorn's hand after he shows himself as Isildur's heir with the reforged sword that took the Ring. Now obviously I'm one of those that have read the trilogy more than once, which is saying something. I've read tons of books, but not many rate one re-reading, but I've read these more than I can count. Despite that, I can't quite imagine it real enough. I want to see it just like I've read it, or as close as humanly possible. I know it's difficult translating a book into a movie, and we're talking one book, not 3. I have to give the guys credit for being crazy enough to try and pull this off. They certainly did better than the Ralph Bakshi animated movie that only did about the first half of the story. But I was very disappointed by the sudden complete departure from the story in this movie. I had problems with the first one, but they didn't ruin the movie for me. But I'm still glad I went to a matinee and only paid 2.50 to see this dog. Expand

See all 319 User Reviews


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