I just had the wonderful opportunity of re-watching Peter Jackson’s ‘Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring’, and what it reminded me of most (or at least, what certain parts of it reminded me) was how Boromir has evolved in my mind from when I first saw the movie. Regrettably, the first time I read the first book was after I had seen the movie so opinion from that probably affected how I approached the character.
However, what is clear to me is that every time I see it again (or read that chapter again), is that Boromir’s death is brilliantly done — he was supposed to die there, and it was done in a way which made it memorable.
In those last moments, he adheres to his culture and its values, he keeps to the beliefs of his own House, and he displays the skill which made him into a great captain of men. All that despite the fact he must have known there was no escape for him.
That single-minded approach to his own death makes me like him more and more — I seem to be able to understand him better, for nothing he does is by that out of the ordinary.
That stance he assumes in the film when the hobbits are endangered and uruks gathering on their position… I can imagine a thousand men in the past having done the same to protect their friends/lords.
“The Way of the Samurai is found in death. When it comes to either/or, there is only the quick choice of death. It is not particularly difficult. Be determined and advance.”
— Yamamoto Tsunetomo
For some reason, I think that Yamamoto Tsunetomo would approve of our Boromir.