The Black Gate Opens

Track 15 - ROTK

 

(3:55) The diversion at the Black Gate begins and Frodo and Sam face a low moment on the mountain. A brief section of this music is used later, while Frodo dangles over the chasm in Mount Doom.
 

I have placed dividers between the scenes at the Black Gate and the ones on the Mountain but the scenes (with the exception of Frodo dangling) run continuously in the movie.

 


0:00

–

A pounding beat starts out the track joined quickly by a blare of high horns, then moves to a running beat. The Black Gates are opening (in the TE this happens right after Aragorn calls out Sauron. In the EE it happens after he beheads the Mouth of Sauron.) Those that have approached the gate fall back to the rest of the company.

0:04

–

A pulsing up and down version of the Mordor Outline begins...

0:08

–

 and then fades as the horns take up a melody. We cut back to the waiting company and then over to Sam and the collapsed Frodo. (Sam tells Frodo that the Eye has moved on. Something has drawn it's gaze. Only the first few seconds of this scene with Frodo and Sam is on the CD.)


(We cut back to the Black Gate. Aragorn is rallying the troops. "A day may come when the courage of Men fails.. when we forsake our friends and break all bonds of fellowship...")

0:18

–

"But it is not this day. An hour of wolves and shattered shields when the age of Men comes crashing down. But it is not this day." Strings are added to the low, running beat.

0:31

–

"This day we fight!" The running beat continues under a strong statement of the Fellowship Theme. "By all that you hold dear on this good earth, I bid you stand Men of the West!"

0:44

–

The Host from the West draw their swords and Aragorn turns to face the East.


0:51

–

The high strings hold a moment then fade to leave just a rumble of low instruments We cut to Frodo and Sam who are climbing up the mountain, then back to the Black Gate where the vast Army of Mordor is issuing forth and surrounding the Men of the West.

1:01

–

A clear high whistle plays music clearly evocative of the Shire, although it's not the Shire Theme. The low rumble continues. Sam has collapsed and Frodo is struggling. He can't do any more than inch his way up in a crawl. He collapses himself just inches past Sam. At this point, I think the whistle holds the last bit of Shire that Frodo and Sam possess. We don't 'recognize' the music as the Shire Theme just as they don't have much of the Shire left in them. But the whistle holds on to what is there.


1:40

–

Horns come in as we cut back to the Black Gate. Pippin draws his sword. and the low rumble dies off on the CD (I think this low rumble represents both the Mountain of Fire and the horde of Orc troops. In the movie, the rumble continues.) A long, high shot reveals just how badly the Men of the West are outnumbered.

1:55

–

Strings take over a sadly sweet melody as Gimli and Legolas acknowledge their friendship. and are joined by.... (The music in the movie for this short scene differs slightly from the CD.)


2:03

–

The choir joins in as we cut back to the Mountain. Sam is crawling toward Frodo. He takes him in his arms...

2:16

–

...and looks up the Mountain.

2:28

–

The whistle returns with another vague reference to the Shire theme. "Do you remember the Shire, Mr. Frodo? It'll be spring soon. And the orchards will be in blossom. And the birds will be nesting in the hazel thicket." The choir continues softly under the whistle. The music here is not so harsh. The rumbling mountain is only a whisper against the whistle and a soothing choir accompanies Sam's soothing memories. Again, the Shire melody is not very present... the whistle must carry the concept.

2:49

–

Strings join the choir and tin whistle for awhile. "And they'll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields... and eating the first of the strawberries with cream." This music is similar to but not exactly like the movies


(The music from 2:58 - 3:23 is not in this section of the movie. However, the section from 3:03 - 3:28 without the tin whistle was used as Frodo dangles over the lava at Mount Doom. See note on The End of All Things page. Gollum and the Ring have fallen into the lava and Frodo is hanging onto the rock above the chasm. Sam is trying to reach him but he can't. He yells at Frodo to "Take my hand". With his injured hand, Frodo grabs for Sam's hand but he can't get a hold of it. )

3:07

–

Sam yells "No" as Frodo dangles over the lava.

3:12

–

Frodo looks back up at Sam with a sad, resigned look on his face. The tin whistle, heard on the CD is not in the movie, only the choir. Sam is determined. "Don't you let go."

3:21

–

"Don't let go." he pleads.

3:26

–

"Reach!" Resolve shows on Frodo's face and... (he grabs Sam's hand.)


(The scene on the side of the mountain continues: "Do you remember the taste of strawberries?" "No, Sam. I can't recall the taste of food... nor the sound of water... nor the touch of grass. I'm... naked in the dark. There's... There's nothing. No veil between me and the wheel of fire." Frodo has gone from resignation and exhaustion to agitation. "I can see him with my waking eyes." None of this music is on the CD. The flute has dropped out and the music takes a dark turn toward the end. Sam is getting determined. "Then let us be rid of it...")

3:23

–

The choir intones soft notes. "I can't carry it for you but I can carry you."

3:31

–

The choir continues its soft notes as noble horns play the Grey Havens Theme. Sam picks up Frodo and carries him up the slope.

 

 

Lyrics 2:03 - 2:58 and 3:23-3:52 from “The Argument”

 

On the side of the Mountain

Only the sections 2:03-2:58 & 3:23-3:52 are used or similar to music used in the scene on the side of the mountain. Since we know the choir lyrics for the movie version, we can make some assumptions about the OST music. Below is the accounting for those sections


 

Struggling up the mountain - same as the movie so the choir lyrics are probably correct for this portion of the track

three fast beats per bar, time stamps every other bar
triple dots indicate a note sustained over a beat.

[2:03] ta ... ... ... ... ta
[2:05] han ... ... ... ... ...
[2:08] nar- ... ... ... ... nar-
[2:10] cho ... ... gurth ... ...
[2:13] gar ... ... ... ... ga(r)
[2:15] ve- ... ... ... ... ...
[2:17] thed ... ... ... ... ...
[2:20] e- ... ... ... ... ...
[2:23] ... ... ... ... ... ...
[2:25] chϊ- ... ... ... ... ...

 


 

"Do you remember the Shire, Mr Frodo?"  - Same as the movie so the choir lyrics are probably correct for this portion of the track

three fast beats per bar, time stamps every four bars
triple dots indicate a note sustained over a beat.

[2:28] nen ... ... ... ... nen go ... ... ... ... ...
[2:33] hon ... ... ... ... ho(n) be- ... ... ... ... ...
[2:38] di- ... ... ... ... ... thon ... ... ... ... ...
[2:43] na ... ... ... ... ... meth ... ... .. ... ...

 


 

“And they’ll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields… and eating the first of the strawberries with cream.“ - somewhat similar to the movie so the choir lyrics may be correct for this portion of the track

three fast beats per bar, time stamps every four bars
triple dots indicate a note sustained over a beat.

[2:48] han ... ...

... ... ...

... ... ... ... ... ...
[2:53] na(r) ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...

 


 

"Come on, Mr. Frodo. I can't carry it for you... but I can carry you! Come on!" - same music as the movie so the choir lyrics are probably correct.

three fast beats per bar, time stamps every four bars
triple dots indicate a note sustained over a beat.

[3:23] na ... ... ... ... ...

... ... ...

... ... ...
[3:27] meth ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...

 

four fast beats per bar, time stamps every other bar
triple dots indicate a note sustained over a beat.

[3:31] di ... ... ... ... ... ... ...
[3:37] tho(n) ... ... ... ... ... ... ...
[3:42] na ... ... ... ... ... ... ...
[3:47] meth ... ... ... ... ... ... ...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 

 

 

1-A Storm is Coming ~ 2-Hope and Memory ~ 3-Minas Tirith ~ 4-The White Tree

5-The Steward of Gondor ~ 6-Minas Morgul ~ 7-The Ride of the Rohirrim ~ 8-Twilight and Shadow

9-Cirith Ungol ~ 10-Anduril ~ 11-Shelob's Lair ~ 12-Ash and Smoke ~ 13-Fields of the Pelennor

14-Hope Fails ~ 15-The Black Gate Opens ~ 16-End of All Things

17-Return of the King ~ 18-The Grey Havens ~ 19-Into the West

ROTK Closing Credits Music