The tale of the the Lord of the Rings may start with creating a community and a plan to stay together to help Frodo deliver the ring to Mordor, but every fan knows it doesn’t take long before everyone starts walking their own path. Some do it by choice, but the majority of the breakups in this epic trilogy happen by force – and involve a lot of pain and heartache along the way.

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Whether it’s Frodo’s repeated attempts to carry his burden alone, how Sauron and Saruman works to tear apart the people of Middle-earth, or the friendships that accidentally shatter, these are some of the most heartbreaking that our favorite bands broke up in the movies.

9 Frodo and Sam (at the river)

Frodo and Sam in the boat scene in The Fellowship of the Ring

Frodo struggles with the burden he carries throughout the trilogy, and Sam is always there to keep it going. It’s no secret that Sam is truly the hero of the tale, and that Frodo (and with him, Middle-earth) would have been lost without him. However, he tries to leave Sam more than once along the way, feeling his trip too dangerous, and it’s still heartbreaking to watch. The first time, when Frodo tries to row and get away from the community on his own, Sam runs into the water after him – despite not being able to swim. His determination, fear and love for his friend are painfully clear right now.

8 Merry & Pippin are taken by the orcs

Merry Pippin captured by the orcs

The community is essentially shattered in an instant – when Frodo and Sam leave, followed almost immediately by an attack from the Orcs, who kill Boromir and kidnap Merry and Pippin, leaving Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli to hunt them down.

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It’s a moment that scares all viewers, as Merry and Pippin seem doomed, and the trio struggle to catch up with them, even with all of their considerable skills.

7 Eomer is exiled

the Lord of the Rings

Outside of the Fellowship, it is revealed that the land of Rohan fell under Saruman’s influence, through Grima Wormtongue and a spell cast on the king. Meanwhile, the most painful separation comes when Eomer is exiled from his home and sent to the far reaches of Rohan, along with so many other fighters. Not only is it heartbreaking for him, as an exile would be painful, let alone unfair, but it is painful to see Eowyn now at Grima’s mercy, then to see the impact it has on Helm’s Deep, and how much. men died without the exiled fighting force of the Rohirrim to protect them.

6 Faramir is fired by his father

the Lord of the Rings

Faramir’s father, the steward of Gondor, is a tough man who makes no secret that he preferred Boromir to Faramir – and after Boromir’s death, categorically states that he would have preferred Faramir to have died. After this brutally painful moment between father and son, Denethor sends Faramir to fight an impossible battle, possibly to die. It’s hard to watch and see Faramir’s willingness to do his father’s orders, even if it will kill him – and while it doesn’t, it ends up killing Denethor, separating father and son at the same time. end.

5 Aragorn leaves the army

Viggo Mortensen as Aragorn and Bernard Hill as Theoden in The Lord of the Rings

Aragorn is a true hero and inspires the people around him wherever he goes – that’s what makes it so hard to see him leave the Rally Army to go find the King of the Dead under the mountains. The rest of the people who are preparing to defend Middle-earth do not understand that he is going to try to find a way to save them all, and think that he is giving up and leaving them, fleeing the battle to come. His departure causes many of them to lose hope, even if he ends up saving them upon his return.

4 Pippin goes to Minas Tirith

Pepin and Gandalf

Merry and Pippin are a perfect pair of friends and manage to stay together for most of the trilogy – which makes their eventual separation so much harder to bear. Pippin, after letting his curiosity get the better of him and looking into the palantir, is rushed to Gondor for his own protection, without Merry.

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Their separation is heartbreaking, as Merry gently gives her the last of her smoke leaf, and Pippin doesn’t realize at first that Merry won’t be coming. Hearing Pippin start to panic and call his best friend’s name as he walks away is devastating.

3 Aragorn & Arwen

One of the only love stories in The Lord of the Rings is Aragorn and Arwen’s, and for a while it looked like they wouldn’t have a happy ending. The two were separated when Aragorn left to accompany the community, and Arwen’s father almost convinced her to travel to the Eternal Lands with the rest of her people, leaving Aragorn behind. In the end, of course, she catches a glimpse of the son she would have with Aragorn, and turns around, but it’s still heartbreaking to see her struggle to imagine leaving him behind.

2 Frodo and Sam (In Mordor)

The second time Frodo tries to leave Sam behind is when they are almost at their goal, crossing the stairs of Cirith Ungol, and Gollum manages to convince Frodo that Sam is stealing their food. Seeing Frodo gone so far with the power of the ring that he would reject Sam and tell him to go home is hard enough – but it’s the devastation visible on Sam’s face as he leaves that really does. spectator. Of course, everyone knows Sam will turn around and save Mr. Frodo once again, but watching him sob as he descends the mountain (and knowing that he might just die on the way home) is tragic.

1 The community and Gandalf

Gandalf seeks to speak to Frodo in the Mines of Moria in The Lord of the Rings The Fellowship of the Ring

Gandalf is the first to leave the Fellowship, when he is shot down by the Balrog under the mountains. At the time, it is assumed that he was killed, but of course he returns much later as Gandalf the White. This separation is always heartbreaking, especially since (without having read the books) it seems to be the end for the venerable old wizard. It’s also a moment that really changes Frodo’s state, sending him more and more into the despair that almost overwhelms him at the end.

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