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Ringer Reviews - The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

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Ringer Review - NAME

Davy Jones

24, Cairo

Date Posted: 2013-12-24
Tolkien Fan Level: 8
Film Format Seen? Imax 3D
Will view again in a different format? No

What could have been otherwise a strong adversary to the original LotR movies. Smaug suffers from two fatal blows, lack consistency and too much reminiscence.

It is quite obvious from the editing of the movies and sets that the decision of switching to a trilogy had a bigger effect on this one than on AUJ. The movie is filled with scenes that just look that they were specifically added as fillers (I would even say the final showdown with Smaug was one of them). The movie's consistency and pace suffered a lot from these extra scenes. You have a movie with some great sequences and breathtaking sets, yet unable to utilize them to create a masterpiece, as it's forced to drag other weaker aspects along for the sake of screen time.

I see some selective character development, mainly focusing on Bilbo, Thorin, Kili and Tauriel. Less focus on Bofur and Balin. Adding the Legolas/Bolg feud mostly feels like filling time. I did enjoy Tauriel (Except for the Arwen-ish scene) and Legolas' re-entry, I just hoped they would be better executed or at least receiving a bit more attention.

Surprisingly, I did not have a problem with the movies ending, if anything, it at least guarantees a pretty busy movie in the third installment. Smaug was pretty damn awesome if you overlook the fact that he's not really as dangerous as he claims to be, failing to harm anyone in the last third of the movie, you kinda expect the dragon everyone has been waiting for to be a bit more decisive.

On the plus side, Howard Shore's music this time is simply stunning, while it's questionable why the Misty Mountain's theme wasn't used at all. It's still pretty great. I would've like a more epic theme for Smaug instead of the overly eastern psychological one.

Anyway, enough with the rambling, and nitpicking aside, This movie is definitely better than AUJ, in almost everything, and it holds a good promise that the third installment will be even better.

P.S. I did not mind the detours from the original Tolkien story, I always felt The Hobbit was Tolkien's weakest link in the legendarium, and no matter how hard he tries, I don't think it will fit quite right.

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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