Los Angeles Times

Review: 'Tolkien' fails to open a window into the mind behind 'The Lord of the Rings'

What would J.R.R. Tolkien have made of "Tolkien," the touching, polished, impeccably well-behaved new movie about his early life? The author's estate has already weighed in, distancing itself from a project that moved ahead without its participation or approval. Watching the movie myself, I couldn't shake the feeling that Tolkien would have disliked it intensely, which doesn't mean we should necessarily feel the same: Quite a few people would reject their own biopics on principle, no matter how smartly and sensitively done they were.

And a certain degree of sensitivity has undoubtedly been brought to bear on "Tolkien," if not

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