There and Back and There and Back Again

Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit recap, in running shots.

This article was originally published in 2013 to coincide with the release of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. A slightly updated version is printed below. 

The Lord of the Rings movies—whose journeys come to a close this week with The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies—tend to follow a few familiar beats: People are tempted by the ring, ominous statements are made about treacherous new junctures, and everyone (even the dwarves and elves) comes together in the end.

But mostly, there’s a lot of running—especially across mountain ridges, filmed in helicopter shots. If you need a recap of the series, look no further than our supercut of all the running in the first four films. It’s only a few minutes long, but rest assured that we have a special 43-minute extended edition locked away in our vaults.