The Lord of the Rings (1978 film)

1978 film directed by Ralph Bakshi

J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings is a 1978 animated fantasy film in which the Fellowship of the Ring embark on a journey to destroy the One Ring and end Sauron's reign over Middle-earth.

Directed by Ralph Bakshi. Written by Chris Conkling and Peter S. Beagle, based on The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien.
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  • Boromir! I don't know what part you've played in this mischief, but help now! Go after Merry and Pippin and guard them!


  • The forces of darkness were driven forever from the face of Middle-Earth by the valiant friends of Frodo. As their gallant battle ended, so, too, ends the first great tale of The Lord of the Rings.


Narrator: [voiceover] Long ago, in the early years of the Second Age, the great Elven-smiths forged rings of power. Nine for mortal men, seven for the Dwarf lords, three for the tall Elf Kings. But then, the dark lord learned the craft of ring making and made the Master Ring, the one ring to rule them all. With the One Ring, Middle-Earth is his, and he cannot not be overcome. As the last alliance of men and Elves fell beneath his power, he did not notice the heroic shadow who slipped in. It was Prince Isildur, of the mighty Kings from across the sea, who took the ring. But because he did not destroy it, the spirit of the dark lord lived on, and began to take shape and grow again. But the ring had a will of its own, and a way of slipping from one hand to be found by another, so that it might at last get back to its master. And there, the ring lay at the bottom of the great river Anduin for thousands of years. During those years, the dark lord captured the nine rings that were made for men and turned their owners into the Ringwraiths. Terrible shadows, under his great Shadow, who roamed the world...searching for the One Ring. In time, the Ring was found. Two friends were fishing in the great river one day.
Sméagol: Give us that, Déagol, my love.
Déagol: Why, Sméagol?
Sméagol: Because it's my birthday, my love. And I wants it!
Déagol: I have already given you more than I could afford. I found this, and I'm going to keep it!
Sméagol: Oh?! Are you, indeed...MY LOVE?!?! [grabs Déagol by the neck with his bare hands and strangles him to death. He then takes the Ring and keeps it for himself]
Narrator: [voiceover] He used the Ring for thieving, and to find out secrets. His own people began to despise the wretched creature and to call him Gollum. Tortured and driven by the ring, he hid in dark caves...and a deep mountain, where he remained for centuries. But the ring slipped off Gollum's finger, too. And so it was that Bilbo found it during his travels with the Dwarves.
Gollum: Thief! Baggins! Thief! It stole our precious, our precious!! Our birthday present! Thief! Baggins! We hates it forever! WE HATES IT FOREVER!!!!
Narrator: [voiceover] It was Bilbo Baggins, the hobbit, who took the ring back to the Shire, his home. Decades later, Gandalf the wizard visited Bilbo on his going away birthday party.

Frodo: [wakes up to someone knocking at his door] All right, all right. Just a minute. [answers the door] Gandalf!
Gandalf: [bows] Greetings, Frodo.
Frodo: Gandalf, it's really you! Oh, its been so long.
Gandalf: Seventeen years, since Bilbo left. You look the same as ever, Frodo.
Frodo: You look older, Gandalf.
Gandalf: I've been on a long journey.
Frodo: It's the ring, isn't it? Bilbo's funny magic ring? You always use to look like that when you talked about it.
Gandalf: Bilbo's funny ring? Makes you invisible? Give it to me, Frodo.
Frodo: Give you the ring?
Gandalf: For a moment only. [Frodo hands him the Ring] Can you see any markings on it?
Frodo: There are none. Its quite a plain ring, really.
Gandalf: Well then, look. [tosses the Ring in the fireplace; Frodo panics] Wait. Do you desire it so much already?
Frodo: No, but...but why ruin it?
Gandalf: Because it is altogether evil. It will corrupt and destroy anyone who wears it until he passes into the world of shadows under the power of Sauron, the Dark Lord of Mordor.
Frodo: Not Bilbo!
Gandalf: [points at Frodo] You are the one who has the Ring now. [hands the Ring back to Frodo]
Frodo: It''s not even warm.
Gandalf: No. Not even a dragon's fire can harm that Ring. Ash Nazg Durbatuluk. Ash Nazg Gimbatul. One Ring to rule them all. One Ring to find them. One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them!
[Cut to Frodo and Gandalf, walking outside at nighttime]
Frodo: I wish it need not happen in my time.
Gandalf: So do I. The enemy still lacks one thing to give him strength and knowledge; to break all resistance and cover all the lands in darkness. He lacks the One Ring.
Frodo: But, but maybe he doesn't know that it was found.
Gandalf: He knows, Frodo. Gollum left his cave to follow the Ring himself and the Dark Lord caught him in Mordor. The Dark Lord knows what ring it was that Gollum found and how he lost it again. And he has heard of hobbits at last and of the Shire. And he even has a name to think about. The name of Baggins.
Frodo: Because of Gollum. Oh, Gandalf, what am I to do? What a pity that Bilbo didn't kill that vile creature when he had the chance!
Gandalf: Yes, it was pity. Pity and mercy. And now, Frodo, the decision lies with you. What will you do with the One Ring?
Frodo: I'll give it to you, Gandalf! You're wise and powerful. What, will you not...
Gandalf: No! Do not tempt me. I would wish to turn it to good and it cannot be used so. Meaning to be kind, I would become as terrible as the Dark Lord himself; do not tempt me! I shall have such need of strength so soon.
Frodo: Then, I suppose, I must take the Ring and guard it and I hope to go away somewhere alone. They won't...they won't bother the Shire if the Ring isn't here.
Gandalf: My dear Frodo, I'm afraid you are right. You'll have to go and leave the name of Baggins behind you. That name is no longer safe. Your new traveling name shall be...Mr. Underhill.

Gandalf: I have come for your aid, Saruman the White, in troubled times. The Nine are abroad, darkness approaches; the Black Riders!
Saruman: [walks away] Is that all the news you have for me, then?
Gandalf: Is that not enough? Sauron is moving at last!
Saruman: We can deal with Sauron ourselves, Gandalf. You and I, one way or another.
Gandalf: What talk is this? What are you saying, Saruman?
Saruman: It is time for us to choose. A new age is upon us; a new power is rising. Nothing that men, or elves, or wizards can do will avail against it. Its enemies are utterly doomed. But its friends aren't.
Gandalf: You are saying that we should join with Mordor? With him?
Saruman: Does that displease you? WHERE IS THE RING, GANDALF?! Why do the Black Riders search for it in the Shire? Have you hidden it there? Would you rather see the Dark Lord have it...OR SARUMAN OF MANY COLORS?! [locks Gandalf in a magic force field]
Gandalf: Neither of you will have it.
Saruman: There is a third choice. [Wormtongue appears and hands Saruman his staff] It is to remain here until you tell me where the Ring may be found.
Gandalf: Saurman, if you do this, if you delay me here, Sauron will surely get it then.
Saruman: And he will know his good servants...and his enemies. [laughs]
Gandalf: Saruman! [Saurman walks away, laughing] SARUMAN!!! SARUMAN!!!!

Merry: We're going with you, Frodo.
Frodo: With me?! But how do you...? [looks at Sam] Sam?! But you gave your word!
Sam: They already knew so much, Mr. Frodo.
Merry: Sam didn't tell us about the ring, Frodo. I saw Bilbo use it once, before he went hide from the Sackville-Bagginses. And after that, Pippin and I kept on the lookout and we followed you, and we asked questions everywhere.
Pippin: And we even wormed a few things out of Gandalf.
Frodo: And you spied on me, and Sam helped you.
Merry: And we spied on you.
Sam: But we meant no wrong to you, Mr. Frodo! Don't you remember what Mr. Gandalf said? Take someone who you can trust, he said.
Frodo: It doesn't seem that I can trust anyone.
Merry: That all depends on what you want. You can trust us to stick to you through thick and thin to the bitter end. But you cannot trust us to let you face trouble alone, and go off without a word. We're your friends, Frodo.
Frodo: [smiles with a chuckle] Bless you, you deceitful scoundrels!

Aragorn: There is a hill called Weathertop about halfway between here and Rivendell. We will make for it tomorrow. So will Gandalf...if he can.
Sam: [about Aragorn] I still don't know if we can trust him, Mr. Frodo.
Aragorn: I said you have no choice, Sam! [Sam flinches] Because if I wanted the Ring for myself, I could have it, now. [unsheathes his sword and raises it to the air] My name is Aragorn, son of Arathorn. If by life or death I can save you, I will.

Gandalf: Yes, this way! We should find our way down to the Great Gates by tonight!
Gimli: I shall be glad! I doubt now the dwarves ever came back here!
Legolas: Why should they come back? What was left for them to mine?
Gimli: Mithril silver, the most precious metal in the world!

Galadriel: This is the Mirror of Galadriel. It shows things that were, and things that are, and things that yet may be. Do you wish to look?
Sam: I'd not mind a glimpse of what's going at home. It seems a terrible long time I've been away.
Galadriel: Come then. You shall look and see what you may.
Sam: [looks into the Mirror, and panics] I've got to go home! They've dug up Bagshot Row and thrown my poor old gaffer out in the street! I've got to go home!
Galadriel: The Mirror shows many things, Sam, and not all have yet come to pass. Some never come to be unless those that behold the vision turn aside from their path to prevent them. Do you wish to leave Frodo now and go home?
Sam: No.
Frodo: [looks into the Mirror] Gandalf! No...No, it must be Saruman. [reaches his hand onto the Mirror]
Galadriel: Do not touch the water! [Frodo pulls his hand back] He's looking for you. But he cannot find you, not here, not yet. The door is closed. [shows her ring Nenya to Frodo, which shimmers a soft light]
Frodo: "Three rings for the Elven kings under the sky."
Galadriel: Yes. We hid those three from him, and he has never touched them. If your quest fails, then nothing can stand against him and we are defenseless. Yet, if you succeed, if the One Ring is destroyed, all we've built with the three will fade. Time will come here, and Lothlórien will fade. You are the footstep of doom to us, Frodo.
Frodo: [showing her the One Ring] Lady Galadriel, I will give you the one ring if you ask for it. It's too great a matter for me.
Galadriel: [laughs] And I came to test your heart. You will give me the Great Ring freely, and in place of the Dark Lord, you will set up a queen! And I shall not be evil, but beautiful and terrible as the morning and the night, stronger than the foundations of the Earth! All shall love me under despair! I pass the test. I shall diminish and go into the west and remain Galadriel, and you must depart in the morning.

Aragorn: [finds Boromir dying] Boromir!
Boromir: I tried to take the Ring from Frodo. I am sorry. I have failed. Aragorn...Aragron. Go to Minas Tirith. Save my people. Aragorn...
Aragorn: I will go. I promise you.
Boromir: The halflings...Orcs took them. I think...they are not dead. [dies]

Gandalf: I have come for your aid Saruman the White, in troubled times. The Nine are abroad, darkness approaches, the Black Riders!
Saruman: Is that all the news you have for me then?
Gandalf: Is that not enough? Sauron is moving at last!
Saruman: We can deal with Sauron ourselves Gandalf. You, and I. One way or another.
Gandalf: What talk is this? What are you saying Saruman?
Saruman: It is time for us to choose. A new age is upon us, a new power is rising. Nothing that Elves or Men or Wizards can do will avail against it. Its enemies are utterly doomed, but its friends...
Gandalf: You are saying that we should join with Mordor? With him?
Saruman: Does that displease you? Where is the Ring Gandalf? Why do the Black riders search for it in the Shire? Have you hidden it there? Would you rather see the Dark Lord have it, or Saruman of Many Colours?
Gandalf: Neither of you will have it.
Saruman: There is a third choice. It is to remain here, until you tell me where the One Ring may be found.
Gandalf: Saruman, if you do this, if you delay me here, Sauron will surely get it then.
Saruman: Then he will know his good servants... and his enemies.

Pippin: I don’t know what to do now. I don’t even know where we are!
Merry: You should have studied maps more and played less in Rivendell. This is Fangorn Forest!
Pippin: We’re no safer than we were with the orcs! No blankets and almost no food, and nothing to eat for a hundred miles. We don’t even know where we’re trying to get to!
Merry: Let’s climb up there! Maybe we can find out where we are, at least!
[They climb the hill].
Merry: Well, it’s nice here. The Forest looks so different in the sunlight!
Pippin: I know! It’s funny, but, well, I almost felt I liked the place!
Treebeard: Almost felt you liked the Forest! That's uncommonly kind of you.

Legolas: [examines Merry & Pippin’s tracks] They were here, but where they went, I can’t tell.
Aragorn: [examines Treebeard’s footsteps] I don’t understand these other marks.
[Enter Gandalf, disguised]]
Gimli: Look! Your bow, Legolas! It’s Saruman! Shoot, before he puts a spell on us! Quick!
Gandalf, disguised: Elf, Man, and Dwarf together! A rare sight in these times!
Gimli: Now! Stop him, Legolas!
[Gandalf magically disarms them all; unmasks]
Aragorn: Gandalf! Beyond all hope! Gandalf!
Gandalf: Yes. Yes, that was my name!
Aragorn: What happened?
Gandalf: Long time I fell. Long I fell, and he fell with me. His fire was about me. I was burned! Ever he clutched me, and ever I hewed him, far under the living Earth… until at last he fled back, up the secret ways of Moria. There, we fought, above the mists of the earth, and the peak of the mountain was wreathed with lightning. I wandered far, on roads I will not tell. Naked I was sent back, until my task is done.

Frodo: We're there, Sam. Another day, maybe two. When the light comes tomorrow, you'll see how near the mountains are.
Sam: Well, it’s a good thing, Mr. Frodo, because we're running awful low on food. I reckon we got enough left to see us to this Mount Doom, after that, I don't know.
Frodo: Oh, Sam. Samwise Gamgee, my dearest hobbit, friend of friends. After that? If the ring goes into the fire and we’re at hand? After that, dear Sam? I wouldn't worry. Just to get there. Just to get there. Oh, the ring is so heavy now, Sam.


  • Fantasy...beyond your imagination.
  • Come to Middle-earth, a world beyond the furthest reaches of your imagination.
  • A single dream is more powerful than a thousand realities