Date Posted: 2013-12-24
Tolkien Fan Level: 1
Film Format Seen? 2D 24 fps
Will view again in a different format? No
Apart from some beautiful wide shots of Mirkwood and Laketown, 'The Desolation of Smaug' is very much a return to the darker, dirtier and murkier look, that was part of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Everything seems more organic. It's not just face that is different. The tone is darker , and the humor and merriment (which I by the way loved in 'An Unexpected Journey') is reduced to an absolute minimum. The threat from the forces of evil is far more imminent this time, which brings me to one thing that I retrospectively have changed my mind about:
I have previously stated that there is not much at stake in 'The Hobbit' compared to The Lord of the Rings. With the recent development of the plot in mind, this statement does not hold water anymore. Let me quote one of the users from the Danish movie website Filmz.dk, a guy who calls himself enfilmnÃ¸rd: "The whole story was put into a wider perspective. This is not just a bunch of dwarves on a trip to regain their homeland. There are other forces at stake. The world is changing, and evil lurks. Some ignore it, others are onto something." What else can I say? I loved the first scene with it's murky surroundings and glowering bad guys and the elegant cut to Bilbo 12 months later. It was also great to hear several new musical themes from Howard Shore. And I found the new character Tauriel to be a most welcome and refreshing adition to the story. Her interest in Kili was definitely one of the things that gave the film emotional clout. All of the action scenes were pure delight, especially the Dwarves' escape from the wood elves - that's the best action scene I have seen in a very long time! And the meeting with Smaug and the subsequent cat-and-mice play, with cross-cuts to the events in Laketown was also phenomenal. Some have complained about the cliffhanger ending. I loved it. This film is a masterpiece.
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