At long last, friends, the Lord of the Rings musical (which, at a cool $24 million, is reportedly the Most Expensive Stage Production Ever!) has opened. Eagerly awaited by the people whose homes are filled with J.R.R. Tolkien books and copious special edition DVDs, the musical - currently playing in Toronto - received a lot of negative reviews from snotty theater critics. Objecting to the nearly FOUR HOUR running time (clearly these people have not sat through the movies), reviewers, while sympathizing with the tremendous difficulties of adapting wildly popular films to the stage while somehow finding a new voice (the musical doesn't), called it "expensively, lengthily and unspectacularly dull, dull and dull". Ouch.

However, since fans of Peter Jackson's films are incredibly unlikely to care that Ben Brantley found the show "largely incomprehensible", one doubts that the negative reviews will have much impact on the show's ability to sell tickets.