My Discussion with Diana Glyer about the Tolkien Biopic on William O’Flaherty’s All About Jack Podcast

I have recently had the opportunity to be part of a few different dialogues about the Tolkien biopic. I wrote a review for Forefront, where I talked about the Problem of Beauty and some of the struggles that Christian artists have in this age. I also posted a response to the film–almost a reaction to it rather than a review. “My Defiant Appreciation of the Tolkien Biopic” was also a plea to Tolkien-lovers to judge the film on its own merits as a biopic, and my own desire to love something that brings me more of Tolkien’s world. Both responses created a lot of discussion, but I was pleased when Dome Karukoski, the director of Tolkien, retweeted my review and called it “my favourite to rule them all.”

On the weekend I also recorded a podcast with a couple of friends. C.S. Lewis lovers should know William O’Flaherty’s “All About Jack” podcast, which for the last few years has brought dozens (hundreds?) of great author interviews, reviews, and features related to Lewis and the Inklings. William hosted me and Diana Glyer for a conversation about the Tolkien biopic. Diana is well known to lovers of the Inklings. Her magnum opus The Company They Keep is an essential text for people who study book creation or for folks interested in how the Inklings as a group managed to change the world of literature. More recently, her Bandersnatch provides a readable and resourceful guide for creators and writers–particularly those interested in collaboration, and guided by the Inklings and the stories they told.

Our conversation was a lot of fun and, I think, created a thoughtful and careful response to the film. Whether you have seen the film or you are waiting for the DVD release this summer, I hope you enjoy our Tolkien biopic podcast.

Or click here:

About Brenton Dickieson

“A Pilgrim in Narnia” is a blog project in reading and talking about the work of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and the worlds they touched. As a "Faith, Fantasy, and Fiction" blog, we cover topics like children’s literature, apologetics and philosophy, myths and mythology, fantasy, theology, cultural critique, art and writing. This blog includes my thoughts as I read through Lewis and Tolkien and reflect on my own life and culture. In this sense, I am a Pilgrim in Narnia--or Middle Earth, or Fairyland. I am often peeking inside of wardrobes, looking for magic bricks in urban alleys, or rooting through yard sale boxes for old rings. If something here captures your imagination, leave a comment, “like” a post, share with your friends, or sign up to receive Narnian Pilgrim posts in your email box. Brenton Dickieson is a father, husband, friend, university lecturer, and freelance writer from Prince Edward Island, Canada. You can follow him on Twitter, @BrentonDana.
This entry was posted in News & Links and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

45 Responses to My Discussion with Diana Glyer about the Tolkien Biopic on William O’Flaherty’s All About Jack Podcast

  1. Josiah Peterson says:

    Can’t wait to listen to this next rainy day. What a great opportunity!

    On Thu, Jun 6, 2019 at 3:18 PM A Pilgrim in Narnia wrote:

    > Brenton Dickieson posted: ” I have recently had the opportunity to be part > of a few different dialogues about the Tolkien biopic. I wrote a review > for Forefront, where I talked about the Problem of Beauty, and some of the > struggles that Christian artists have in this age. I also” >


  2. danaames says:

    Well, it’s pretty awesome that the director called your review his favorite!

    Had to drive an hour to a movie theater that was showing “Tolkien”, but it was worth it. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and agree with your review. The only complaint I have is that I wish the actual timing of T’s marriage (before he went to the battlefield) had been observed, but I understand that the way they showed T’s and E’s parting is more dramatic for the cinema that way. Otherwise, I think it was well done, especially for a contemporary film. It’s rare to see the portrayal of healthy friendship and marital fidelity as beautiful, and also rare for the aspirations of the TCBS members to be presented so positively — or even remembered.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, isn’t that fun?! Directors aren’t often reading my blog, methinks.
      I’m SO glad you enjoyed the film. I have more than one complaint, but I did find it lovely overall–particularly as a low budget piece.


  3. David Llewellyn Dodds says:

    Thanks – this sounds an inviting three-cornered conversation!

    And impressive that the director noticed and was grateful!

    Tolkien opened here, today, and I see a bunch of people from the Dutch Tolkien Society are meeting up to see it together, tomorrow – which should generate additional interesting conversation and responses hereabouts…

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dutch Tolkien nerds!


      • David Llewellyn Dodds says:

        Yep! At the NederMoot walkabout I got to read some of Tolkien’s pretty calligraphic original correspondence with the folk who invited him to come and be fêted – which eventually worked out, in 1958 (though the release of the recording of what Humphrey Carpenter called “a lively speech in English interspersed with Dutch and Elvish […] in part a parody of Bilbo’s party speech” by Tolkien has hit dire snags, I heard). Yesterday, I read the first of what I expect will be several interesting interviews Dome Karukoski gave while here for the Dutch release…


  4. I loved The Company They Keep! I read it for my first Mythgard/Signum class and it made want to be in such a group myself. Love Dome’s words. Will have to see this when it comes out on DVD. Thanks!

    Namarie, God bless, Anne Marie 🙂


  5. Hannah says:

    It was great listening to the podcast! Also to hear Diana Glyer talking, having read her “The Company They Keep”


  6. David Llewellyn Dodds says:

    Tangentially, just got a copy of the Dutch translation of Philip MacDonald’s Patrol (1927), which is the third of his novels listed in his Wikipedia article, which also notes it “was issued as one of the first twenty Penguin Books in 1935”! It looks like it was based, or at least drawing on, his experience serving “with the British cavalry in Mesopotamia” – a book by this grandson of George MacDonald I had not heard of, or, anyway, registered seeing the title of, before today!


  7. David Llewellyn Dodds says:

    Following a couple tangents – films and editing for reader/audience convenience – I link something I just encountered which I think very interesting:

    Most of the technical sides of this are quite new to me (except the long-standing practice of “movies being edited for planes and TV”), but the ‘matter’ – of the possibility of sharing ‘versions’ or ‘cuts’ of films as one can do in putting on plays or reading books aloud – is one that has intrigued me for years. How can one easily avoid an ‘all or nothing’ dichotomy? (For example, I used to make timing notes on videotapes, and send the children out of the room while I fast-forwarded over a ‘scary bit’ (or a ‘yucky bit’, or whatever) – functional, but not smooth or elegant…)


    • David Llewellyn Dodds says:

      And now I encounter an AP story about controversy surrounding Netflix’s “first original Arabic series ‘Jinn'” in which “School buses cart […] teenagers off to a wide-open desert haunted by ancient demons that make strange and terrifying things happen” – apparently at Petra. Curiously juxtaposed with this summary is “In response to a request for comment, Netflix said the series ‘seeks to portray the issues young Arabs face as they come of age, including love, bullying and more.'” (Are we to suppose the “ancient demons” fall under the category “more”?) The story reports further “Netflix said content removals are rare but that it complies with take-down requests from authorities.”


      • Intriguing discussion. My son is at the age that I want to show him 100 movies that are great, and 30 of them have things that could easily be filtered out. I didn’t know it was a controversy… I just thought the will to do it wasn’t there.
        But what we are shocked at will grow and change. Do you read Huck Finn aloud to an 8 year old? Perfect age, brilliant book, but…. And so on.


  8. Pingback: 7 New Audiobooks on C.S. Lewis: Michael Ward, James Como, Stephanie Derrick, Joe Rigney, Diana Glyer, Gary Selby | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  9. Pingback: C.S. Lewis’s “To love at all is to be vulnerable” Infographic by Gavin Aung Than | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  10. Pingback: A University of Prince Edward Island-L.M. Montgomery Institute Timeline (Feature Friday) #LMMI @UPEI @LMMI_PEI | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  11. Pingback: Call For Papers: C. S. Lewis and Friends Colloquium, Taylor University, June 4-7, 2020 | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  12. Pingback: 2019: A Year of Reading: The Nerd Bit, with Charts | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  13. Pingback: A Brace of Tolkien Posts for his 128th Birthday #TolkienBirthdayToast | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  14. Pingback: Top 5 New Posts of 2019 | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  15. Pingback: The C.S. Lewis & Friends Conference: A Final Call and My Paper Proposal | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  16. Pingback: C. S. Lewis and Friends Colloquium Postponed, but Student Paper Contest Continues | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  17. Pingback: Superinfection, COVID-19, and C.S. Lewis’ Till We Have Faces | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  18. Pingback: My Paper, “A Cosmic Shift in The Screwtape Letters,” Published in Mythlore | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  19. Pingback: The Tolkien And Lewis Bromance: The Diana Glyer Interview on the Babylon Bee | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  20. Pingback: A Brace of Tolkien Posts for his 129th Birthday #TolkienBirthdayToast | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  21. Pingback: Lewis and Tolkien among American Evangelicals: Guest Post by G. Connor Salter (Lewis Scholarship Series) | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  22. Pingback: Good C.S. Lewis Studies Books That Did Not Win the Mythopoeic Award: Part 3: Literary Studies on C.S. Lewis | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  23. Pingback: Upcoming Signum University and Mythgard Online Events (For Tolkien, Fantasy, SF, and Language Lovers) | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  24. Pingback: The Doom and Destiny of Tolkien’s Chaucer Research: A Note on John M. Bowers, Tolkien’s Lost Chaucer (2019) | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  25. Pingback: Announcing my New C.S. Lewis Course at the University of Prince Edward Island (Registration Open for January 2022) | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  26. Pingback: A Brace of Tolkien Posts for his 130th Birthday (#TolkienBirthdayToast) | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  27. Pingback: “Stuff We Liked in 2021” by the Rabbit Room (Friday Feature) | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  28. Pingback: A Brace of Tolkien Posts for his 131st Birthday (#TolkienBirthdayToast) | A Pilgrim in Narnia

  29. Pingback: 2022: My Year in Books: The Infographic | A Pilgrim in Narnia

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.