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I was excited to learn more about J.R.R. Tolkien and really hoped this movie would be good.   It’s good, but not great.  As an author of 29 books, I’m always fascinated to learn more about other authors.  In this insightful drama, you’ll learn about some of the small details of Tolkien’s early life that influenced his work. 


“Gentle” seems to be a word that critics have been tossing around with this movie.  It also describes the lovely music.  Congratulations to director Dome Karukoski for presenting his first movie in English.  The cinematography is beautiful.  Tolkien’s family and estate have NOT endorsed this film.  That makes you wonder why not, right?

Nicholas Hoult and Lily Collins are engaging leads.  Colm Meaney and Derek Jacobi should be in every British period piece.  The supporting cast was very good.  I wished that there had been more in the movie about his writing career and how he became such a celebrated author later on in life.

Considering the incredible imagination of Tolkien himself, the movie is not very imaginative.  If you’re a fan of The Lord of the Rings, you’ll be gifted with a lot of Easter Eggs in the movie.  Personally, I couldn’t get through his The Lord of the Rings books, but I devoured the films.

If you enjoy this movie, you’ll also like the Anthony Hopkins movie Shadowlands, which is a biopic of author C. S. Lewis, who was a contemporary author of J. R. R. Tolkien.


Yes, butmost kids will be bored out of their minds.  There is no profanity, but some violent war scenes where people die during World War II.  There is some kissing, but mostly proper British behavior.


  • Not just friendship, but fellowship
  • Language
  • “A word isn’t beautiful just because of its sound. It’s a marriage of sound and meaning.” – Edith Bratt (Lily Collins)
  • “Journeys…we take them to prove ourselves.” – J.R.R. Tolkien

Movie Review Mom:  Trina Boice teaches for BYU-I and is an author of 29 books.  You can read more of her reviews at  You can hear her podcast “Daily Inspirational Quotes Hosted by Trina” on Amazon Echo devices and Volley FM.  Because she is a popular speaker in China and loves to travel around the world, she created  You can see all of her books and win prizes at  You can also find @TrinaBoice on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter.