- food in a cooler
- 1.5 litres of water in a bottle so tall it wouldn't fit in the cooler
- reading material for before and between
- travel neck pillow
- Obus-form lower back pillow
I got the seat I wanted: front row on the aisle. The front row isn't a bad place in this theatre -- the screen is well back. I think a few rows further back would be optimal for viewing, but for 10+ hours of sitting and watching, the leg room and extra floor space for bags, not to mention the clear view of the screen, trumps that. (No stadium seating here.) No one sat next to me, but another woman on her own sat one over, so we had the buffer seat for coat draping, etc.
Whoever warned me about sitting near Orlando fangirls, how right you were! Only since I'd sat down first, there wasn't much I could do when they sat behind me. To be fair, I don't know that they were actually Orlando fangirls. I did hear them talking about Tom Bombadil during one of the intervals, so they weren't just movie fans. But they were very giggly at inappropriate times and during TTT I had to tick them off for constant talking. It only mostly helped.
The pillows made the experience SO much better. My back and neck would have been very sore today otherwise. And the cooler was rigid enough that I could use it as a footrest. The best was to put it right in front of me so I could draw up my knees. Throw a blanket over the top and I was the coziest and comfiest girl in the theatre.
There wasn't much time between films -- 30 minutes the first time, more like 20 the second, but I got outside to walk around both times. I only ate a bit of popcorn -- mostly I had things like oranges and cheese and pudding from my cooler.
The major flaw was that I developed quite a headache as the day progressed. Not unexpected; movies often give me headaches. But the Advil really didn't do anything and by RotK, I was feeling pretty ill. I took a Dramamine, but when I realised I was sitting there wondering how long it would be until I could leave, I figured I should go before the end. I waited until after Merry and Pippin's emotional battlefield reunion and then went home. I took some Codeine and went to bed. I wasn't dreadfully distressed -- I saw all the stuff in RotK that I really wanted to.
It was so cool to see these all together! By far the highlight for me was seeing TTT:EE on the big screen. Oh, the unbearable cuteness of Merry and Pippin! I thought I would die of their cuteness. I want them right here, right now, so they can be cute for my private amusement. ("And *you* were sick!")
Not to mention, Helm's Deep is the best part of the trilogy for me. Pellanor is bigger, but it doesn't have the same emotional resonance. Helm's Deep is a very *personal* battle: it's a turning point for Theoden, a desperate struggle for the Rohirrim, a frustration for Éowyn, a bonding experience for Legolas and Gimli, a milestone on Aragorn's journey to reconcile his elven sensibilities with his human heritage.
I'm generally cheering for the good guys in these films, but when the wall blows up, I want to have Saruman's babies. It's such a *smart* thing to do. It's not magic, it's chemistry. And no-one can believe that such a thing could be possible. (The look on their faces reminds me of the look on Qui-Gon's face when Darth Maul stabs him in the gut. Or maybe it's just that I get the same buzzy happy ohgodohgodohgod feeling from it. *g*)
I always get such a thrill when they finally do ride out. "Forth Eorlingas!" makes me all shivery. And what a reminder of the superiority of mounted combat! (You should read Guns, Germs, and Steel.)
I'd forgotten how lovely Haldir the Big Gay Elf is. I could listen to him talk and watch him walk all day long. He's so pretty, he should come back as some sort of undead thing. Not a vampire, I don't think. But if he could be reanimated and walk around all pretty and dead and gay, I would be very, very pleased.
In the scene -- and I think we're on to RotK now -- where the Rohirrim are having their victory party, I was scanning the background and I saw this little drama:
Boy who we recognize from Helm's Deep: drinks from huge flagon of ale
Mother: pushes flagon away from him You're too young to drink.
Boy: pulls flagon back I was old enough to fight in the battle, so I should be allowed to drink!
TTT:EE also improves Faramir's character tenfold. Here is the sensitive, wounded, intelligent man at last. But still grim, oh so grim. The flashbacks with Boromir and Faramir are heartbreaking. Their dynamic is so interesting. (kestrelsan, I demand you finish some fic about them!) Boromir is so protective of Faramir and Faramir doesn't seem to resent Boromir at all, even though you'd expect him to. (Or maybe he does -- and is ashamed of it.)
I still don't think that Faramir and Éowyn are a good match, but that's more about temperament than worthiness.
Okay, that's a lie. I don't think that there's anyone good enough for Éowyn (except possibly me) but since she wanted Aragorn, she should have him. I've never yet forgiven him for not dumping Arwen and marrying Éowyn. And in the movies, he SO thought about it.
Maybe I should write a fic where Éowyn and Aragorn do get married and then later on, they have a quarrel about something and they fight and Éowyn wins and turns Aragorn over her knee and spanks him with the flat of her sword.