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Ringer Reviews - The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

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Ringer Review - NAME


Date Posted: 2012-12-22
Tolkien Fan Level: 0
Film Format Seen? 3D 24 fps
Will view again in a different format? Yes

Peter Jackson would be hard-pressed to really misstep in making The Hobbit, given his established mastery of the story, the techniques, and the world that is Middle Earth. I was not disappointed in this installment, however, did find a few things to dislike. Jackson’s brilliance continues to shine through in the sets, costumes, screen play, for the most part; taken as a package, the film engages and is so very enjoyable.

However, I feel that references to the future story, and a very different one, were a little heavy handed. A friend joked that Gandalf was a “moth-whisperer,” the scene with the line of dwarves strung out across the mountains had me waiting to hear the Fellowship theme play, and the Rivendell scene with Elrond, Galadriel, Saruman, and Gandalf was a depressing portent to what is otherwise a totally different story with a different point to it, even if it was the introduction to a magical place. It’s not really necessary to connect the two stories so forcefully; the ring does it for us, without the deliberate in-your-face, this-is-what-is-to-come bits.

I also feel that the other additions to the story, scenes not in the book, were unnecessary and just added to the length, not necessarily the strength of the story. They would be: the white ork story line, which I feel detracts – Thorin was a boy of 8 or 9 when Smaug came, so this is the worst change, and I feel will not add anything and will have to add more to be resolved going forward. Aging the character to a young man detracted from the story, imho. The storyline of the goblins was more than enough to play with re: danger, characters, interest, adventure. If Jackson had stuck to that line fully, the white ork part would be unnecessary addition to the drama. Another is the battle of the mountain giants – which I think is referenced in the book as something they only hear in the distance, again, a side issue to indulge in for video game geeks and digital artists. Third, Radagast the Brown at home. This scene I object to less; it was funny and added a bit of levity to the movie, sets up the spiders in Mirkwood and in LOTRs (again). If these scenes were deleted, the movie would’ve been considerably shorter, which I was wishing for at one point. I also think it would‘ve been a stronger story, and more in keeping with the book

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