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Ringer Reviews - The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

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Ringer Review - NAME



Date Posted: 2013-12-23
Tolkien Fan Level: 7
Film Format Seen? 2D 24 fps
Will view again in a different format? No

After viewing the two Hobbit films so far, I have come to a sad conclusion. Maybe Christopher Tolkien is finally right, for not allowing any other of his father’s work to be transported in the big screen. But let me explain myself.

For many days now, I read comments, here and there, like “The second or third time I saw DOS movie, I managed to like it” the same thing was going on with AUJ. Then, I remember that when I first saw each one of LOTR movies, I liked them from even my first viewing. So something’s wrong with The Hobbit trilogy and not only for me.

So I ask, a simply question. If any of us weren’t fans of Tolkien’s and PJ’s previous work in LOTR, would we be so passionate about those movies which from the first time of viewing them, we did not like. Would we have to force ourselves to watch them again and again, just to believe that we like them? I think not. So that’s the problem with the new trilogy.

Concerning the AUJ adaptation, besides all those copy-paste scenes from LOTR, silly lines and inserted characters, it comes out now after watching DOS that it had a better storyline. So far, DOS seems to be the worst film based on Middle-earth, because it has strayed completely from the book and this seems from the confusion in which PJ's team ( and all of us ), have fallen.

What I mean is that in both AUJ and DOS we get the feeling that instead of re-visiting middle-earth, this time it feels more like visiting an adventure park. The main difference between them and the LOTR trilogy is that all of the action sequences are almost cartoon like. Instead of scenario we have a dozen of flat action scenes, with no purpose and no sense of real danger when watching them. Also I feel sad as many others before me, that after two films I know no more about the Dwarves or Bilbo than I did before.

The entire storyline so far seems to me as a mess, without even mentioning the Kili-Tauriel sorta-romance but mostly I ‘m confused or troubled about.

1) Why Radagast's still wonders if it is a trap? After all, he was attacked there and forced to travel to the other side of misty mountains just to inform Gandalf that something strange goes on in Dol Guldur, even carrying with him a Morgul blade?

2) The back and forward of the -day walkers-orcs which seems to be everywhere around middle-earth, but nobody else seems to notice or even worry about them.

3) 3a-Why we did not get to see in AUJ the prologue of DOS and conversely AUJ Azog's prologue in DOS with him changing roles with Bolg in both films, which could lead to a great emotional confrontation between Thorin and Azog in TTT causing perhaps the death of them both, since Azog is still alive, for TTT movie.
3b-why Gandalf while in Bag End in AUJ seems to be unaware of Thorin’s meeting with the other dwarvish clan’s which he advised him to do so, in their meeting at Bree?

4) What about Beorn? OK we see some guy who’s changing from bear form to human, having previously chasing our heroes into his house? And then the next morning making them breakfast and giving them advices….Really? (I know it would be in the EE but that’s not the point, right?)

5) Laketown is supposed to be built upon the long lake’s waters for a reason. In DOS we see that anyone can come and go, from the main pier…. Undetected!!!

6) I'm still trying to figure out how it is possible for Thorin not to know his way around the place where he grew up. Okay I understand that there is a chance not to know about the secret entrance, but I FIND IT DIFFICULT that he had never noticed the stairs on those giant statues beside the main entrance;

7) The dwarves spending months journeying to the mountain, only to give up after 5 minutes? How silly was that?

8) Another disturbing thing, as many others before me mention, is the reason why does Smaug repeatedly refer to Thorin as ‘Oakenshield’, a name acquired long after he left Erebor? ...Who knows?

9) Also is a little bit strange that, when Smaug decides to burn Laketown departs from Erebor leaving back all the dwarves still inside his nest alive, after being previously trying to kill them all! It just doesn't make any sense.

Besides all that, there are certainly more than a few times, that I catch my self bored with all those, so called “foreshadowing” scenes. Repeating word for word and visual for visual that's not actually foreshadowing, that's just repetition of something that worked before but has the exactly opposite effect now. And I say, why? Can't PJ leave the magical moments and uniqueness of the LOTR trilogy alone and create new ones for the Hobbit? Is it because he’s out of fresh ideas (food for thought).
In conclusion….

I believe that PJ, when taking the decision to leave the book behind and create something of his own, revealed that he is not as good story teller as supposed to be. He even manages, to destroy the pleasure of us all by watching the Hobbit and LOTR trilogies as continuity and that is something really sad.

The Ratings
The Other Ratings
Martin Freeman 's performance as Bilbo Baggins?
How would you rate Luke Evan's performance as Bard??
The Overall representation of The Dwarves ?
How would you rate Benedict Cumberbatch's' performance as Smaug?
Ian McKellen's performance as Gandalf?
How would you rate Lee Pace's performance as Thranduil?
How would you rate Orlando Bloom's performance as Legolas?
How would you rate Evangeline Lilly's performance as Tauriel?
How would you rate Stephen Fry's performance as Master of Lake-Town?
Did you think Tauriel was a welcome addition to the film?
How would you rate Beorn?
How would you rate the scene with the Spiders?
How would you rate the imprisonment/escape sequence?
Did you like the Necromancer being discovered by Gandalf as Sauron?
Did the movie fairly portray the character arc of Thorrin?
How would you rate Lake-Town?
How would you rate the burglar interchange between Bilbo and Smaug?
How would you rate revisiting Bree?
How happy are you with the attempts to tie The Hobbit back to the Lord of the Rings?
Did you enjoy seeing Gandalf visit Gol Duldor and The Tombs?
Did you like the splitting of the company of Dwarves?
Did Smaug live up to your expectations?
How would you rate the ending of the movie; in regards to leading well into the next film, and serving as a good ending point.
Is DOS a better film than AUJ?
The overall pace of the film.

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