The Lord of the Rings screenwriters and filmmakers did the best they could, adapting a massive trilogy of books into three movies. Fans are always going to have little things that they wish were in the movies (is that Tom Bombadil I hear?), but it’s impossible to include everything within a reasonable runtime, even allowing for the Extended Editions. Therefore, many book references are included just as little quotes or throwaway lines, which provide a treat for Lord of the Rings books fans.
Reddit users have taken the trouble of pointing out a few times that chapter titles from the books are referenced in the best fantasy movies. A delightful one was posted by Russian Bagel; “In The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of The Ring (2001), after the hobbits fall down a hill, Merry says ‘That was just a detour, a shortcut.’ Sam asks ‘A shortcut to what?’ and Pippin says ‘mushrooms!’ In the original book, chapter four is called A Short Cut to Mushrooms.”
A few others that are included are Gandalf murmuring “riddles in the dark” to himself in Bag End at the start of The Fellowship of the Ring, which is a chapter title in The Hobbit. Vader 300 pointed out; “They do the same thing in The Hobbit after they leave the goblin caves before the orcs start chasing them. Thorin hears them coming and says ‘out of the frying pan’ and Gandalf finishes ‘and into the fire!’ Which is the title of the chapter where the wolves and goblins chase the band up trees.”
Considering that there’s nearly 500,000 words in the The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Peter Jackson, Philippa Boyens, and Fran Walsh did a fantastic job of condensing the books into the movies. It’s lovely to occasionally hear little nods to the book, even if other things have to be cut for time.
Check out our guides to the Lord of the Rings cast, and to Gollum explained and Aragorn explained. Be sure to seek out our guides to the best fantasy series and to what we know so far about the Rings of Power season 2 release date.