Howard Shore's Use Of Leitmotifs In Lord Of The Rings

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Howard Shore’s use of leitmotifs in his movie score composition in the Lord of the Rings provides for a foundational basis of emotion and character narrative. His complex integration of leitmotifs in the trilogy is considered to be among the most extensive in terms of the sheer number of motifs and themes accounted for, as well as it’s multifaceted composition. Many composers of movie scores will often fall into the pattern of minimizing the usage of leitmotifs and instead score based on momental romanticization. Shore does not fall into this category. The intentionality and strategy placed in each score and harmony is a direct emotional reflection of character development and plot progression. In the first film, Shore introduces the principal themes. He then built upon those themes and added more in the second film. In the third film Shore was able to create conflict and crossovers between the existing themes to emphasize and ultimately have a resolution. There are numerous leitmotifs employed in the trilogy, but the most extensive and complex is arguably the Fellowship theme.
Leitmotifs hold significant weight in the plot development and characterization within the Lord of the Rings trilogy. It cements
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An example of this lies in the same fragmentation of the Fellowship theme from the scene where Aragorn is believed to be dead and the scene where he is reunited with a portion of the Fellowship at Helm’s Deep. At this point in the trilogy, even small fragmentations of the Fellowship theme are easily recognizable because of how deeply ingrained the leitmotif is. Variations of Fellowship theme fragmentations are sprinkled in throughout the trilogy until the end of the Return of the King. When Frodo destroys the ring and the Fellowship is reunited the full orchestral theme is played out for a few lines, which is then resolved into the Shire

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