Bumbling Oaf?

My daughter is into LOTR in a big way. We recently acquired the extended version of The Fellowship of the Ring. We are watching it, again, as I write after having had lunch.

One of the things that seems to happen as you watch a film many times is that you begin to focus in on aspects of the film you didn’t notice before. Correct me if I am wrong, but I am forming the impression that Gandalf is a bit of a bumbling oaf! On various occasions he seems indecisive and weak. This is contrary to the impression I gained from having read the book some 20 years ago.

His initial exchange with Saruman just before he reveals his alliegance to Sauron shows how he fails to appreciate the gravity of the situation. Then later, when trying to cross over the mountains and a debate arises as to the best way to go, Gandalf says, ‘Let the ring-bearer decide’. Strikes me as a man who doesn’t know what he is doing!

What do you think?

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Bumbling Oaf?