Date Posted: 2012-12-15
Tolkien Fan Level: 8
Film Format Seen? 2D 24 fps
Will view again in a different format? Yes
Being raised a Tolkien fan, I was obviously extremely excited to see The Hobbit. The minute the trailer came out I got so hyped up that I was afraid of being disappointed, especially considering my expectations were unreasonably high. However, I am completely and utterly overjoyed. This Ringer-high is gonna last me for daaaayyyyys. Mega-fan excitement to the extreme.
The introduction with Frodo was a perfect way to start the movie - although I've read all of the books, many of my friends haven't and I know that the transition will make the movie just that much more enjoyable for them. While the entire scene in the Shire with the dwarves first arriving was great, the moment I fell in love with the movie was the stunning performance of 'Misty Mountains.' That moment in itself is perfect. Ian McKellan, as always, is perfection. I have not once been dismayed by any of his performances and this is no exception. He is, without doubt, my favorite wizard in history. The simplest way for me to review Richard Armitage's performance would be to say that he has lived up to his character. As for Mr. Freeman's role as Bilbo: well, I'm happy to say that he has somehow managed to portray our Hobbit in a way that rivals my mind's initial representation of him upon first reading the book, which is rare. As for the eleven remaining dwarves, I was not unsatisfied... but also not impressed. The acting was wonderful and lovely, don't get me wrong! And yet I felt that the importance of the dwarves was overlooked. There were, of course, introductions to all of them and, in a way, they should definitely be seen as a unit - but there was little or no real characterization of them individually. This worries me because I was expecting to have a solid love for all of them that I could build on in this trilogy. Yet the only impression I had of the dwarves after seeing the film was that they were unimportant except in terms of comedic relief. Another, smaller disappointment for me were the Orcs and Wargs. In all of the LotR films I was terrified of them (especially of the Orcs in the Mines of Moria, agh!), and yet in An Unexpected Journey I didn't find either the Orcs or Wargs scary.. I'd hope to see them create a more nail-biting experience in the next two films. Something that stands out above all else for me in An Unexpected Journey is the suspense I felt. Right from the beginning I was anxious to get a good look at Smaug, and I have been left a million times more curious than I was before. I truly look forward to seeing what the crew has in store for us. And although I know the whole story already, the suspense and excitement I felt when seeing Bilbo change throughout the film was truly remarkable - and I know this will only get better. Finally, I'd like to mention a small note that isn't exactly necessary, but meaningful nonetheless - I almost cried when Thorin hugged Bilbo! I've never cried while watching a film and don't really expect to anytime soon... but the beauty of the eagles and the perfect choice of location made it a truly emotional moment. I'm happy to say that Peter Jackson and his spectacular crew has one-upped my expectations once again. Bravo!
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