Date Posted: 2013-12-21
Tolkien Fan Level: 6
Film Format Seen? 3D 48 fps
Will view again in a different format? Yes
I think that "The Desolation of Smaug" was okay. It included some things that I was pleasantly surprised by, and went into detail on some things that I would have omitted. I thought most of these choices were a really mixed bag of some smart decisions paired with some poor ones.
Overall, the actor's performances in this movie are great. The score and sound are great. The costumes, makeup, set design, CG, and other effects were great. While it is a long film, the pacing was fairly good. However the film lacks a screenplay with a strong sense of objective. This is not to say that the events that are included in this film do not big tension towards the final climax of the final film, but the film doesn't complete many high stakes arcs. All narrative films that are of any stock must have a problem that the characters are to solve by the end. This is even true of trilogies. In the Lord of the Rings films, while "The Two Towers" was the middle film, there were objectives that the characters had to achieve that had high stakes. Rohan was under siege and our heroes either had to defeat the Uruk Hai at Helm's Deep or they would be lost. The same is true of both "An Unexpected Journey" and "The Fellowship of the Ring." In the first Hobbit film, the company must get free of the goblins, and then get free of Azog, or they will die. In "The Fellowship of the Ring" Frodo and the fellowship must escape the Uruk Hai or be destroyed. Overall I feel that while the Hobbit would benefit from its own trilogy, however, this film doesn't contain a strong enough conflict or plot to warrant its existence, and would have benefited from some condensing in order to include the resolution it strongly foreshadows.
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