Date Posted: 2013-12-24
Tolkien Fan Level: 6
Film Format Seen? 2D 24 fps
Will view again in a different format? No
I have now seen it four times and it gets better every time. McKellen, Freeman and Armitage are perfect again. The Laketown theme is great and hummable, and the music when Tauriel is talking to Kili is just beautiful. Unlike AUJ, there is a lot of new music.
SPOILERS I was worried about Tauriel, especially her relationship with Kili. I was very impressed and pleased with how it played out. Kili does indeed have a crush on her but I didn't get the impression she felt anything but fondness and compassion for him. Their little conversation about starlight was one of my favorite parts. Gandalf vs. Sauron=INCREDIBLE. I absolutely loved it. Freeman captures Bilbo so perfectly. And while I thought he fell by the wayside at times in AUJ, DOS puts plenty of focus on the titular Hobbit. He frees the dwarves by himself just as in the book which made me very happy. Some have said DOS deviates more than any of PJ's adaptations so far. I disagree. While there are some pretty major changes, deletions, and additions, I don't think it was any more drastic than elves in Helm's Deep, completely altering most of the beginning of FOTR, or sending Sam home. Most of the changes were along the lines of fleshing out Bard, leaving out the looong journey through Mirkwood, adding Legolas and Tauriel, etc. I was pleased with most of the changes. Having four dwarves stay behind in Laketown to be attacked by orcs makes sense from a dramatic standpoint. It worked for me. My only real complaints are near the end. The healing scene dragged on a little too long IMO. The last ten second or so could have been cut. It just felt a little cheesy the first time. I didn't mind Kili's "Do you think she could have loved me?" line. On top of being a lovable idiot at the best of times, he's delirious; he's going to say silly things. Tauriel's reaction was perfect. The other thing that bothered me was Smaug chasing the dwarves. It is quite over the top. Happily both of these quibbles have stopped bothering me now, with the exception of Thorin boogie-boarding on the molten gold. That might take a few more viewing to get used to. Overall, I thought DOS was an improvement on AUJ and I love it. A+
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