The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is a 2003 epic fantasy-drama film directed by Peter Jackson that is based on the second and third volumes of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. It is the concluding film in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy, following The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) and The Two Towers (2002).
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The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is a 2003 epic fantasy-drama film directed by Peter Jackson based on the second and third volumes of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. It is the concluding film in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy, following The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) and The Two Towers (2002).
As Sauron launches the final stages of his conquest of Middle-earth, Gandalf the Wizard, and Théoden King of Rohan rally their forces to help defend Gondor's capital Minas Tirith from the looming threat. Aragorn finally claims the throne of Gondor and summons an army of ghosts to help him defeat Sauron. Ultimately, even with full strength of arms, they realise they cannot win; so it comes down to the Hobbits, Frodo and Sam, to bear the burden of the Ring and deal with the treachery of Gollum. After a long journey they finally arrive in the dangerous lands of Mordor, seeking to destroy the One Ring in the place it was created, the volcanic fires of Mount Doom.
Released on 17 December 2003, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King received rave reviews and became one of the greatest critical and box-office successes of all time, being only the second film to gross $1 billion worldwide, becoming the highest grossing film from New Line Cinema, as well as the biggest financial success for Time Warner in general, until Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 surpassed The Return of the King's final gross in 2011. Notably, it won all eleven Academy Awards for which it was nominated, an Oscar record, and tied for largest number of awards won with Ben-Hur and Titanic. It also won the Academy Award for Best Picture, the first and only time a fantasy film has done so; it was also the second sequel to win a Best Picture Oscar (following The Godfather Part II) and the only time a sequel has won without a predecessor winning the award. It was the highest-grossing film of 2003.
Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli, Gandalf, Théoden, Gamling and Éomer meet up with Merry, Pippin and Treebeard at Isengard. The group returns to Edoras, where Pippin looks into a recovered palantír which grants him a vision. While using the palantír, he is seen and mentally interrogated by Sauron. Pippin tells him nothing regarding Frodo and the Ring. From this event, Gandalf deduces that Sauron is planning to attack Minas Tirith. Gandalf rides with Pippin to find the steward Denethor. Pippin swears loyalty to Denethor, his son Boromir having saved his life at Amon Hen. Gandalf urges Denethor to call Rohan for aid, but Denethor declines, fearing Aragorn and Gandalf plan to depose him. The Morgul army, led by the Nazgûl, drive the Gondorians out of Osgiliath. Denethor sends his younger son Faramir on a suicide mission to reclaim the city. Pippin fires a beacon, signaling Théoden and Aragorn to assemble the Rohirrim for battle.
Elrond informs Aragorn that Arwen did not take the journey to the Undying Lands and is now dying. Believing their forces to be outnumbered by Sauron's, Elrond gives Aragorn the Andúril to acquire the service of the Army of the Dead, who owe allegiance to the Heir of Isildur. Éowyn confesses her love for Aragorn and asks him not to go but Aragorn reaffirms his love for Arwen. Accompanied by Legolas and Gimli, Aragorn ventures into the Paths of the Dead and gains the loyalty of the King of the Dead and his men by brandishing Andúril, proving himself the Heir of Isildur. At Dunharrow, Théoden rides off to war with over 6,000 Riders, unaware Éowyn and Merry have secretly joined his forces.
Sauron's armies lay siege to Minas Tirith with the Witch-king and his Nazgûl. Denethor attempts to burn Faramir and himself alive but Faramir is saved by Gandalf and Pippin. Denethor commits suicide. Theoden's Rohirrim army appears, charging into the Orc armies and pushing them to the verge of defeat. However, the Haradrim arrive and join the Orc army, turning the tide of battle. The Witch-king kills Theoden but is killed by Eowyn with Merry's help. On the verge of defeat, the Rohirrim are saved when Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli arrive with the Army of the Dead. Aragorn and Gimli kill the Orc-leader Gothmog. The Army of the Dead decimate Sauron's forces, ending the Battle. Aragorn frees the Army of the Dead and their souls go to the afterlife.
Meanwhile, Frodo Baggins, Samwise Gamgee and Gollum travel to Minas Morgul to destroy the Ring. Sam overhears Gollum's plans to murder them and take the Ring for himself. To remove Sam as an obstacle, Gollum persuades Frodo that Sam wants the Ring f
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King Picture Gallery
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