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Heartwarming / The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

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"I made a promise, Mr. Frodo. A promise! 'Don't you leave him, Samwise Gamgee'. And I don't mean to. I don't mean to."

  • There's something very sweet about Gandalf, wizard of the Istari Order, a Maiar of Varda in the service of Eru Ilúvatar, who can dispatch a room full of orcs in a flash of light and defeat a Balrog, genuinely enjoying himself entertaining the hobbit children with fireworks.
    • There is also this line, showing the great regard and protectiveness Gandalf has toward the hobbits in general:
      "Life in the wide world goes on much as it has in this past age: full of its own comings and goings; scarcely aware of the existence of hobbits...for which I am very thankful."
    • Gandalf's friendship with the hobbits comes back after his sacrifice. When the Fellowship is in Lothlorien, the elves sing to mourn him. When Sam asks Legolas to translate, he refuses, as he is still grieving. Sam talks about how they probably aren't singing about the thing that the hobbits remember most about him, the fireworks he used to bring joy to the Shire.
  • Bilbo is trying to work on his book when Gandalf comes knocking.
    Bilbo: No thank you! We don't want any more visitors, well-wishers or distant relations!
    Gandalf: And what about very old friends?
    Bilbo quickly opens the door
  • Bilbo's birthday party:
    • A small moment, but it's Bilbo's birthday, he's the man of the hour... and the second thing we see him doing after greeting guests is telling a bunch of children the story of how he and Gandalf outwitted the trolls. Also notable in that, compared to the "Mad Baggins" impression most shire-folk have in the book, there is a considerable crowd listening to the story with seemingly genuine interest.
    • Bilbo's conversation with Frodo about how much he means to him.
    • Also at Bilbo's birthday party, Frodo's Shipper on Deck moments with Sam and Rosie. He first encourages Sam to ask her to dance, and when Sam gets too nervous and tries to slip away, he just shoves him in her direction and watches, cackling in glee at his successful matchmaking.
  • A small one early on in the journey, but Frodo takes the time to gently reassure Sam when he's afraid of going further than "the furthest away from home [he's] ever been." He takes his arm and quotes some words of wisdom from Bilbo, talking about not only the risk but the excitement of adventure. His voice shifting into Bilbo's is the icing on the cake.
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  • A brief moment after Sam loses sight of Frodo in a cornfield:
    Sam: It's a promise I made to Gandalf: "Don't you lose him, Samwise Gamgee." And I don't mean to.
  • Arwen recommitting her vow to Aragorn, knowing full well the dangers that are to come for him.
    Arwen: [in Elvish] Do you remember what I told you?
    Aragorn: You said you'd bind yourself to me, forsaking the immortal life of your people.
    Arwen: And to that I hold. I would rather share one lifetime with you than face all the ages of this world alone.
    [Arwen gives Aragorn the Evenstar]
    Arwen: I choose a mortal life.
  • What about the very formation of the Fellowship? Poor Frodo looks like he's about to Go Mad from the Revelation, when the Ragtag Bunch of Misfits pledge to aide him in destroying The One Ring:
    Aragorn: You have my sword.
    Legolas: And you have my bow.
    Gimli: And my axe!
    • It's meant as comedy, but Pippin's "Right... where are we going?" He's not oblivious; after what the hobbits went through getting to Rivendell he knows it's going to be dangerous. It just doesn't matter; Frodo's going, so Pippin's going. Where they're going is academic.
  • Just as the Fellowship leaves Rivendell, the main road splits into two immediately outside the gate, and Frodo whispers to Gandalf: "Mordor, Gandalf... Is it left or right?" To which Gandalf informs him that it's left. The old wizard ain't gonna let his dear little friend make a fool of himself so early in his quest.
  • Aragorn and Boromir carrying the Hobbits while plowing through the heavy snow.
  • As the Fellowship are entering Moria, Gimli is boasting to Legolas about the fabled hospitality of the dwarves. A few days ago, they were at each other's throats. Now, Gimli's talking to an elf (a race he dislikes) on friendly terms. The first hint of their friendship.
  • Later, as the Fellowship are escaping Moria, it's Legolas who saves Gimli from falling when he jumps a broken bridge...albeit by grabbing hold of his beard.
  • The quiet moment after we see Gollum for the first time.
    Frodo: I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had ever happened.
    Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. There are other forces at work in this world, Frodo, besides the will of evil. Bilbo was meant to find the Ring, in which case, you were also meant to have it... and that is an encouraging thought.
    • This comes up later for another heartwarming moment when Frodo is standing at the river bank thinking about what he said before wishing the ring had never come to him. He then recalls Gandalf's advice of "all you have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to you", which then gives him the resolve to continue with his mission. Made all the more heartwarming by the music that plays during this scene.
  • A lot of moments featuring Boromir are peppered through the movie, both to show his good qualities beyond his desire for the ring and to make his death more tragic.
    • A small one in Moria during a moment that would otherwise be a complete Tear Jerker. When Gimli finds his cousin's tomb and is sobbing over his body, take note that Boromir has a comforting hand on his shoulder the whole time.
    • For a few parts of the Fellowship, we don't see that much of Boromir except for the fact that he keeps wanting to use the ring. When Gandalf dies and Frodo starts screaming, Boromir's the one to carry him away.
    • And the one to insist that Aragorn "give them a moment, for pity's sake!" when the hobbits are grieving.
    • Boromir actually shows a lot of empathy and concern throughout the whole film. He shows the most concern for the Hobbits when Gandalf dies and tries to cheer up Frodo by telling him he didn't die in vain.
    • After Gandalf dies and the Fellowship escapes Moria, we see Gimli, enraged and in despair, trying to go back on what would definitely be a suicide run, and it is Boromir who holds him back and comforts him.
    • Boromir is also the one to point out that trying to cross over the mountains would kill the hobbits when Gandalf was stubbornly insisting on pushing onward.
    • In a lighter moment of the film, he's teaching the Hobbits how to fight with swords when he accidentally cuts Pippin's hand. He instantly starts apologizing - and gets knocked ass-over-kettle when Merry and Pippin proceed to tackle him playfully. He proceeds to laugh uproariously and put one of them in a headlock; you half expect him to start ruffling hair or giving noogies. It's even better when you realize that he's probably played with Faramir in the same way when they were kids, and likely reminded of said brother.
    • Frodo is still reeling from the death of Gandalf in Moria, and they're being held by Haldir and the elves of Lothlorien. Frodo looks around at everyone and sees them all look at him and look away, except for Boromir, who offers him some consolation.
      Boromir: Gandalf's death was not in vain. Nor would he have you give up hope. You carry a heavy burden, Frodo; don't carry the weight of the dead.
    • Shall we just say 'Boromir is everyone's big brother' and have done with it? Literally, in the case of Faramir, as seen in The Two Towers.
    • Throughout the entire film Boromir focuses his attention and protection on Merry and Pippin, perhaps feeling that someone needs to look out for them since everyone else is focused on Frodo (and by extension Sam). Boromir teaches Merry and Pippin sword-fighting, during the snow storm on Charadras he is shielding and helping them, when the staircase collapses in Moria Boromir grabs on to Pippin and Merry and jumps with them to the other side. And in the end he gives his life trying to protect them, his first words to Aragorn as he's dying even being "They took the little ones".
  • There's something rather endearing in the Extended Edition when Merry leans forward to see the mithril better and Pippin holds him back, afraid that he might fall.
  • Galadriel refusing the One Ring when offered it, and the quiet wonder in her voice afterward. You can tell that this is a woman finding out that she's a better person than she gave herself credit for.
    Galadriel: I passed the test. I will diminish... and go into the West... and remain Galadriel.
    • After she refuses the Ring, there is a subtle change in her demeanour; up until this point, she'd seemed rather cold and distant, but now that she's endured its temptation and refused it, she seems more empathetic and understanding towards Frodo being afraid to face the rest of the journey alone.
      Galadriel: Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.
  • Aragorn and Boromir have a sort of subtler Friendship Moment in Lothlorien. Boromir, in a shaking voice, is confessing he's almost crossed the Despair Event Horizon, that he "cannot see [hope]." Firstly, it's sweet that Boromir opened up to him and that Aragorns taking the time to listen and looking concerned as Boromir talks about the pressure of his position, to do right by his father and "see the glory of Gondor restored." Then there's the absolute love in his voice as he speaks of his home, the White City, and asks Aragorn if he's seen it. When Aragorn says he has, Boromir then sounds downright excited by the idea that one day they'll go there together, and the people will take up the call that "the lords of Gondor have returned!" By this point, he's accepted Aragorn as a brother and equal.
  • In the Extended Version, observe Gimli's absolutely smitten expression as he reveals to Legolas that he asked for one hair from Galadriel's head as a gift, and she gave him three. Observe Legolas's knowing smile: he, like everyone who's read The Silmarillion, knows that Feänor made the same exact request of her three times in the First Age, to no avail. Galadriel, having read Gimli's heart, apparently deemed him thrice worthy of a gift she once refused to the greatest elf who's ever lived.
  • There's also Galadriel's reaction to his request. She only really loses her serene expression twice—once when tempted by the Ring, and when Gimli bashfully compliments her and asks for a hair, and she breaks into a huge smile.
  • As Frodo is just deciding to take off on his own and is running from his encounter with Boromir, he first runs into Aragorn. When it becomes clear what Frodo is doing, Aragorn just very gently closes his hands over the Ring and tells him "I would have gone with you to the end," and Frodo says he knows. He then asks Aragorn to look after the others, "especially Sam" who will not understand.
  • Frodo offers Aragorn the One Ring, and Aragorn refuses it. This proves to Aragorn what even Arwen couldn't convince him of: he does not share Isildur's weakness. It was Frodo who showed Aragon that he was worthy of the throne of Gondor.
  • When Boromir is dying in utter despair, claiming that he's failed the Fellowship and lamenting that not only his city but the entire world of Men is doomed, Aragorn - whom Boromir has only gradually come to accept, and who seems to identify more with the Elves - swears to save the White City, and "our people". Boromir's face is transformed by joy and hope, as he believes at last that there's a chance for the race of Men to survive; he dies content instead of despairing, thanking and accepting Aragorn fully with his final words: "I would have followed you, my brother. My captain. My king."
    • The last words my king are only made even more poignant by contrasting his reaction to first discovering Aragorn's heritage.
      Boromir: Gondor needs no king.
      • Could well just be a tearjerker moment, but how about, right after Aragorn kills Lurtz, when he goes to Boromir, Boromir's first, anguished, words to him are 'they took the little ones'. He, only about an hour ago (in universe) tried to steal the ring from Frodo, even possibly tried to kill him. Now? All that matters is that the Hobbits are in danger. He doesn't care that he's dying, he just cares that the 'little ones' are in danger. Rest assured, nobody doubted Boromir's pure and noble heart after that one line.
    • The reactions by Gimli and Legolas made it all the more heart wrenching and manly tears-inducing.
  • The sequence where Sam catches up to Frodo as he tries to leave the Fellowship so that no one else will suffer the trip to Mt. Doom forms a long string of heartmelting moments:
    • The bit that makes us laugh through our tears:
      Frodo: Go back, Sam. I'm going to Mordor alone.
      Sam: Of course you are. And I'm coming with you!
    • Frodo tries his best to discourage his friend from following him, knowing the trip will most likely be a Suicide Mission. He fails, and the panic in his voice and face as Sam slips under speaks volumes.
    • Sam's original statement that he promised not to leave Frodo was heartwarming enough, but then Sam repeats it, soaked and spluttering after nearly drowning to keep that oath:
      Sam: I made a promise, Mr. Frodo. A promise! "Don't you leave him, Samwise Gamgee." And I don't mean to. I don't mean to.
      Frodo [choking up]: Oh, Sam. [Hugs him]
    • The distinction between the two is important. Samwise made the initial promise to keep Frodo safe largely out of fear of Gandalfnote . But by the end of the film, Sam has instead made it a promise to stay with Frodo no matter what, just out of loyalty and friendship.
  • Things have gone ill for the Fellowship: Boromir dead, Gandalf believed dead, Merry and Pippin taken by the Enemy, and Frodo and Sam moving onward alone. But Aragorn is there to remind them that there is more to their bond than just the mission.
    Legolas: You mean not to follow them.
    Aragorn: Frodo's fate is no longer in our hands.
    Gimli: Then it has all been in vain... the Fellowship has failed.
    Aragorn: Not if we hold true to each other. We will not abandon Merry and Pippin to torment and death... not while we have strength left. Leave all that can be spared behind! We travel light... let's hunt some Orc.
    [Gimli and Legolas cast glances at each other and smile]
    Gimli: YESSS! Haha!
  • When Boromir's body has been placed in a boat to go over the Falls of Rauros, we cut to Aragorn strapping Boromir's vambraces (armour for the forearms) onto his own arms. It was Viggo Mortensen's idea for Aragorn to take them, both as a tribute to their fallen companion and to constantly remind himself of the promise he made to Boromir: to save Minas Tirith and their people. He wears them throughout the rest of the trilogy, and is even buried in them over a century later, showing he never forgot his promise.
  • Frodo's last line of the film, expressing his gladness that he didn't succeed in leaving Sam behind.
  • The credits song "May It Be" by Enya. Also counts as Awesome Music.