Put me in with the 3% of the population who didn’t like it. There is just no excuse for the agonizingly-slow opening or the agonizingly-slow ending. For example: the book’s last paragraph is He drew a deep breath. “Well, I’m back,” he said. Cut to black, dammit! What could be more cinematic? The movie is good where it stays close to the book: the ride of the Rohirrim; Eowyn and the Nazgul; Frodo and Gollum at the Cracks of Doom. The further it strays, the cheesier it gets, and it strays pretty far. Why lose the scene where Grond strikes down the gates of Minas Tirith and the witch-king rides in to confront Gandalf? To buy time for endless tedious minutes of Frodo and Sam climbing the side of Morgul Vale? Why the stupid by-play with Gollum undermining Sam, cheapening the main Frodo-vs-the-Ring story? And one more gripe, not just with this third either: Jackson loves this disgusting shot where Frodo’s on his back paralyzed with fear crawling backward away from a monster of one sort or another, which is neither realistic nor very flattering to Mr. Baggins. I think this cheesy special-effects vehicle is benefitting big-time from everyone’s expectations of Hollywood being so low that it gets raves just for not being egregiously bad.