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The 7 Great Epic Story Movies

Updated on May 31, 2014

The Lord of the Rings; The Fellowship of the Ring

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, The Return of the King

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1.) The Lord of the Rings

The Lord of the Rings is one of the greatest Epic stories of Modern Times. Written over a span of 12 years by JRR Tolkien, it was published in 1954. Peter Jackson carried the vision to put the story into a movie format. He filmed the movies in New Zealand with his cast and released the trilogy into the theaters between 2001 and 2003. The titles of the movies parallel the titles of the books: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), The Two Towers (2002), and The Return of the King (2003).

  1. The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) - This film stars Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, and Orlando Bloom. It follows the story of a hobbit, Frodo Baggins as he sets out on a journey across Middle Earth to destroy an evil ring of power while hunted by the evil sorcerer Sauron. This movie is full of quotable moments and deep philosophical lessons about the war between good and evil. The cinema version is 2 hours and 58 minutes long and the extended edition is 3 hours and 49 minutes long. Great quote from this movie: Frodo: I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times; but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.
  2. The Two Towers (2002) - This film stars the same cast of characters as The Fellowship of the Ring. It continues the story begun in the first movie, following not only Frodo Baggins journey to destroy the one ring, but also following several other parallel stories occurring in Middle Earth at the same time that pit the forces of good against the evil Lord Sauron. Great Quote from this movie: Samwise Gamgee: I know. It's all wrong. By rights we shouldn't even be here. But we are. [watching the Nazgûl flying away] It's like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo; the ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end... because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was, when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it’s only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines, it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you, that meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something.Frodo Baggins: What are we holding on to, Sam?Samwise Gamgee: That there's some good in this world, Mr. Frodo. And it's worth fighting for. The cinema version is 3 hours and the extended version is 3 hours and 43 minutes
  3. The Return of the King (2003) - This film, starring the same cast of characters wraps up the Lord of the Rings story with Epic battles and the destruction of the one ring of power. This is the conclusion to the Lord of the Rings story. The movie run time is 3 hours and 21 minutes for the cinema version and 4 hours and 10 minutes for the extended edition. The best quote of the movie is: How do you pick up the threads of an old life? How do you go on... when in your heart you begin to understand... there is no going back? There are some things that time cannot mend... some hurts that go too deep... that have taken hold.

2. The Hobbit; The Desolation of Smaug

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The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

2. The Hobbit Trilogy

The Hobbit Trilogy is a movie series produced from the writings of JRR Tolkien. It is made from the novel The Hobbit and includes stories from some of JRR Tolkiens writings detailing the histories of Middle Earth which are found in books like The Silmarilion. The Hobbit is a story that pre-dates The Lord of the Rings in the fantasy world of Middle Earth. Peter Jackson first produced The Lord of the Rings and is now releasing his production of The Hobbit which tells the story of how a hobbit, Bilbo Baggins of the Shire sets out on an adventure to free a Dwarf Kingdom from an Evil Dragon and discovers the evil ring of power, 'the one ring' in the process. His discovery of this Ring of Power gives rise to the tale we know as The Lord of the Rings. The three movies in The Hobbit trilogy are An Unexpected Journey (2012), The Desolation of Smaug (2013), and The Battle of the Five Armies (Dec, 2014 release date).

  1. An Unexpected Journey - Released in 2012, this film stars Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, and Richard Armitage along with a strong cast of supporting actors. It begins the adventure of Bilbo Baggins who reluctantly agrees to join a company of Dwarves on a quest to rid an ancient Dwarf Kingdom of the evil Dragon Smaug. This cinema version of this movie is 2 hours and 49 minutes long. The extended edition is 3 hours and 3 minutes long.
  2. The Desolation of Smaug - Released in Dec, 2013 this film has the same core star cast. It continues the journey of Bilbo Baggins and the company of Dwarves as they come to the lair of Smaug the Dragon and seek ways to kill the beast. Action packed, thrilling, and intense this movie keeps you on the edge of your seat. The cinema version of this film is 2 hours and 42 minutes. The extended edition is 3 hours and 30 minutes.
  3. The Battle of the 5 Armies - This is released in Dec 2014

Star Wars: The Phantom Menace

Star Wars: Epic Cult Classic Science Fiction Series

Star Wars is the epic cult classic science fiction series about the battle between good and evil in a space age civilization on foreign planets. The hero of these stories are the Jedi, specially trained Martial Art soldiers with unique lazer like swords called light sabers. They utilize 'the force' (god) to manifest special powers and maintain the balance of the world by holding evil at bay. 'May the force be with you' is the theme slogan of every Jedi Knight. This series became immensely popular in the late 1970's, early 1980's when the first movies were released. They have stood the test of time and were so popular that 3 more movies in the series were released in the 2000's. There are 6 movies in the series: Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), The Return of the Jedi (1983), Episode I: The Phantom Menace (1999), Episode II: Attack of the Clones (2002), Episode III: The Revenge of the Sith (2005). A 7th episode of the series is scheduled to be released in 2015.

4. BraveHeart

BraveHeart tells the story of William Wallace, a scottish freedom fighter who helped inspire Scotland to independence from England. The film claims it is based on a true story. But the story has been embellished and twisted to fit Hollywood's movie producing needs. Its a great movie and a great story with some gratuitous scenes, but it does a great job of communicating the concepts of Freedom and Independence that define the Western ethos and world view. It is not a closely accurate depiction of the man, William Wallace, or what he stood for. It is great Epic tale of heroism and grandeur that feeds the Western mind with Hollywood propaganda. This movie is immensely popular with lots of quotable lines and will go down in history as one of the greatest EPIC movies of all time. One of the best scenes in the movie, is a confrontation between Wallace and another man who challenges his manliness by daring him to see how far he can throw a big rock. It is shown below in the video clip.

BraveHeart: As it Matters in Battle (Rock Throwing Contest)

Braveheart: William Wallace

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Gladiator - The Greatest Movie Scene

What is your favorite Epic Movie or Epic Movie Series?

What is your favorite Epic Movie or Epic Movie Series?

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5. Gladiator (2000)

Starring Russel Crowe, it won 5 oscars for best actor, best picture, best sound, best effects, and best costume design. This story depicts political intrigue and upheaval in the time of the Roman Empire, portraying the Roman obsession with Gladiatorial games and the insanity of the Emperor Commodus. The film music is exceptional as is the acting and plot. This is a violent film and not recommended for children. It has become a timeless classic and will go down in history as one of the greatest Epic movies of all time!

Gladiator - A Great Epic Movie for All Time

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2010)

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6. Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2010)

The Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time tells the story of a young boy from the streets of Nazam who is adopted into the King's family because he saw a boy that chose to do what was right no matter the consequences. This movie depicts the power of making right choices in life and of the importance of brotherhood. The theme of the movie is: The bond between brothers is the sword that defends our Empire. In the face of treachery, that bond is tested to the point of breaking, but the character of an orphan boy from the streets of Nazam, raised in the King's palace, saves the Empire at the end of the day and restores the bonds of the brotherhood that keep the Persian Empire strong. This is a great movie with great moral lessons for children age 12 and up. Its probably too violent for younger children. This is a great movie for adults too, witty, full of intense action sequences, and a good plot. Its a riveting movie.

Ben Hur: Great Scene Jesus the Water of Life

Ben Hur (1959)

Ben Hur is one of the greatest movies of all time. It depicts the story of Jewish Prince, wrongly accused and convicted, stripped of his wealth and title, and sent to years of hard labor on a Roman Galley as a slave, rowing. After earning his freedom by saving a Roman officer, he returns to take revenge on the Roman officer, once his childhood friend, who betrayed him. This story runs parallel to the time of Jesus Christ on the earth and he has several encounters with Jesus during his years of suffering. He successfully destroys the Roman who betrayed him, only to discover that revenge and hatred give him no joy. He also discovers that his mother and sister have contracted Leprosy from the prison they were held in. Torn by a life of agony, he comes face to face with the persecution and crucifixion of Jesus on the cross and explores questions about whether Jesus is the Messiah the Jewish people have been looking for. This is a movie with great lessons about good and evil, hatred, revenge, and forgiveness. It is a story about redemption and God's ability to redeem people's lives. This movie is 3 hours and 32 minutes long.

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Ben Hur / Ten Commandments

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