Date Posted: 2012-12-15
Tolkien Fan Level: 6
Film Format Seen? Imax 3D
Will view again in a different format? Yes
I do not understand how anyone is giving this movie a bad review. If you are a die-hard Tolkien fan, I can tell you right now you will enjoy it. Although, if you walk into the theater expecting it to be like the Lord of the Rings, you will be disappointed. The mood and pace of this film is completely different from The Lord of the Rings, as it should be. Although this is a prequel, it is a separate film and story; and should be treated as such. Now, lets get to the review, without giving too many spoilers!
The beginning of the film is everything you could imagine and hope for it to be. After a heart-stopping prologue, it brings you back to Middle-Earth through familiar faces and a familiar setting, and there are plenty of directly quoted lines from the book to warm your heart and let you know that you're in good hands. The beginning of the film does move a bit slow, but it establishes Martin Freeman's Bilbo (who you will absolutely fall in love with), and the company of dwarves very nicely. Thorin and his motives are made very clear as well, and it is quite obvious that there are some deep emotional issues with the character that will play very important rolls later in the story. The movie wastes no time after the introductions. You are thrown right into the action with flash back battle-scenes, troll encounters, elves, wargs, goblins, and eagles. All of which are beautifully done, with the exceptions of a few goofy or cheesy (if those are the right words) moments that you will just have to deal with and try to look past; this is a children's story after all! I don't want to give away too much about the end of the film, but I will say that it is absolutely satisfying, and although it does leave you wanting more, it doesn't completely leaving you hanging in frustration. The highlights of this film are definitely the mind blowing wide shots of the goblin caves and New Zealand landscapes, seeing Cate Blanchett as the beautiful Galadriel, and without a doubt, the riddles in the dark scene. Martin Freeman absolutely nails Bilbo in every aspect, and his comedic timing is spot on every time. Some of his scenes will almost bring you to tears because they are so beautifully played. Overall, this movie is a roller coaster. Granted it is much more "Hollywood", with an abundance of CGI and special affects, but times have changed and the standards that films are expected to meet these days are somewhat responsible for this. It is a beautifully made film, with lots of action and gripping dialogue. It did not stray too far from the book, which was a large concern of mine, and with the exception of a select few moments, I could not be any happier with this film. Go see it as soon as possible, I promise you will not regret it. It was even better in 3D, it made you feel like you were right there with the characters on their adventure. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey was amazing, and it only gets better from here!
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