Date Posted: 2012-12-17
Tolkien Fan Level: 6
Film Format Seen? 3D 48 fps
Will view again in a different format? Yes
I watched "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" three times on its opening weekend, twice in 48 fps and once in 24 fps. For the most part, it is an outstanding movie, a worthy member of the Lord of the Rings family of movies. Through much of the movie, I felt as if I had returned to Middle Earth.
There was plenty to love. Martin Freeman as Bilbo, Ian as Gandalf again, Richard Armitage as Thorin, and Andy as Gollum were all spectacular. Bilbo's growth as character was notable. I loved the design of all the dwarves and just wished a few more had actual lines to say. The action scenes were top notch (my kids really enjoyed them). Most of the variations from the book were acceptable to me with one big exception. Not surprisingly, the score was amazing. My only one true problem with the movie was Radagast the Brown. He was just too silly, well beyond eccentric. I can accept that he wasn't in the book but his role just seemed so superfluous in the movie. Some of the designs for the character were interesting, but I found him too over the top. Finally, I much preferred 24 fps 3D over 48 fps 3D. 24 fps allowed me to immerse myself in the movie...I found 48 fps too distracting and it removed some of the mood/ambiance from many of the scenes. The CGI especially looked better at 24 fps such as at the beginning of the film where Smaug attacks Erebor and Dale. I can see some of the benefits of 48 fps, but 24 fps was just the better experience for me. Overall, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is a great film especially for fans of Middle Earth.
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