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Hobbit Footage Review & MASSIVE SPOILERS: Full Coverage & Analysis!

April 27, 2012 at 12:36 am by Cliff Quickbeam Broadway  - 

DID WE SAY MASSIVE SPOILERS?! Yes, we did, so before reading further know that everything revealed to me will be revealed to you! Tuesday’s unspooling of 10 minutes of THE HOBBIT at CinemaCon took the place quite by surprise and should be considered a special moment in the history of cinema — where the first public audience witnessed a new future for movies, so brace yourself.  I will interpret everything I saw and how it matches up with Tolkien’s universe … there are SO MANY cool and revealing things we can now expect in the first film alone! Let’s explore the veracity of Peter Jackson’s adaptation with hasty vigor. There is also the matter of the 48 frames-per-second format and the blogosphere’s mixed reaction to the look of the new technology, so read on …

DRIVING THROUGH THE DESERT AT NIGHT

When Calisuri chased me down on Monday, April 23rd, after a flurry of desperate phone calls, tweets, and texting, he said “Dude, how fast can you get to Vegas?”  My heart leapt in my chest: I felt the CinemaCon buzz afresh and knew the highly-anticipated 10 minutes of HOBBIT footage was suddenly accessible!  We thank Warner Bros. for kindly granting TheOneRing.net an opportunity to be in the room with other journalists and the nation’s movie theater exhibitors to see the studio’s 2012 preview.

I left my Dragon Dice game night in a hustle, grabbed a rental car and was on the highway towards Las Vegas quick as a bunny.  I’ll get to the bunny-sled later, but yes… it’s all true.  I would only crash in town one night, enter CinemaCon and see the presentation at 10:30 Tuesday morning, and then drive back to Los Angeles hopefully in time to host our webcast TORn TUESDAY at 5pm.  Indeed, it was the fastest ‘there & back again’ sprint this poor Ent has ever attempted.  A traffic-snarled return trip delayed our webcast significantly, so with apologies to that audience who couldn’t watch live I’ll report everything here from the top down.  The nice folks at ThorinOakenshield.net have captured the audio portion of the show.

WHY CINEMACON?  THE REAL CONTEXT:

First assembly that morning, on the very same stage where Celine Dion famously performs at Caesar’s Palace, included an intriguing “State of the Industry” address by the head of the National Association of Theater Owners (the folks putting on the trade show).  The focus was on business economics and technological advancements that affect exhibitors, especially the big chains: Regal, AMC, Cinemark, etc.  Notably, the conversation was framed around digital projection technology and the recent announcement by Twentieth Century Fox they will no longer distribute their films on 35mm prints, but digitally only — a move the studio will phase into place within 2 years.  This context becomes important when we get to PJ’s presentation of the higher-frame-rate he’s used on THE HOBBIT.

We were treated to live appearances by filmmakers ready to proffer their new work.  It was great to see the DARK SHADOWS stuff from Tim Burton (he looked twitchy and delightfully eccentric as always) — but the next time you bring Johnny Depp out, at least let the man say something.  He just waved and Thank You’d the excited crowd only to leave the stage again…  Christopher Nolan appeared and showed some of THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, which looks like eight ways of awesomesauce! They fixed the unintelligible Bane problem by re-recording his ADR. Anne Hathaway looks surprisingly darker and sexier than her squeaky-clean image.  That’s some interesting casting. Baz Luhrman, appearing pre-recorded, introduced his 3D adaptation of THE GREAT GATSBY, which to my mind looks like a tantalizing cross between MOULIN ROUGE and HUGO, and all to the good — it’s really gorgeous.

When we got to the Peter Jackson intro bit, the audience was asked to put on their 3D glasses and there he was!  Our familiar PJ was on-screen in 3D, sporting a little salt & pepper in his beard and looking rather hale for someone who is working so hard, yet eager to review notable technical advancements throughout movie history.  He thoughtfully explained the adoption of different frame-rates when silent movies went to talkies.  Saying that the industry had settled on a standard of 24 frames-per-second for more than seventy years now, it was time to bring everyone a sample of what 48 fps would look like.  “Why build a ten-minute segment? Because I wanted to give you ample time to take it in, because it will take your eyes a few minutes to adjust to the look of it,” he explained.  It was a fascinating preamble, but needful in that these film exhibitors, perhaps more than fans, want to know what goes into this new tech and what impact it may have on their business.  As Ringer fans, our concerns are fidelity to Tolkien, and perhaps to another extent the movie-core fans want to see fidelity to PJ’s Lord of the Rings Trilogy, as we expect the complete set of five films will be considered of a piece.

RETURNING TO MOVIE MIDDLE-EARTH  

The first thing we saw in 48fps were gorgeously bright shots of the clouds and mountains of New Zealand, the kind of sweeping areal photography that made us swoon in LOTR, thinking again that the country itself was the best piece of casting for Middle-earth.  For a breathless moment I felt rather like someone in an audience seeing their first color film after endless years of only Black & White photography.  Someone had lifted the glass off the windshield and you were looking at something *real* and in three dimensions.

I was indeed taken aback by the presentation.  What all did I see?  I’ll break it down for you, keeping in mind this material was “unfinished” meaning incomplete green screen shots, no color-correcting, borrowed music cues from the Trilogy, etc.  It was a non-continuous potpourri of scenes, most if not all from the first installment THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY.

CHOCK FULL OF SURPRISES
      **SPOILERS BEGIN HERE**

Aside from several seconds of familiar content seen in the teaser trailer this past winter, the clips quickly hit brand new territory:

  • The White Council featuring Saruman, Gandalf, Galadriel and Elrond.

This showed Sir Christopher Lee in front of greenscreen, looking at the table where Gandalf has just placed a Morgul blade.  Urgent discussion ensues about the nature of the weapon, and a luminous Cate Blanchett gets the lion’s share of the expository dialogue.  She explains how the Men of the North once battled against the Witch-King of Angmar, and succeeded in burying him in a spell-protected crypt, “so dark and deeply buried it would never see light again.”  Gandalf raises his eyebrows as if to say, “It’s right here, so never say never.”  Hugo Weaving provides the deep-voiced “But that’s impossible!” incredulity of the scene while the faintest flicker of wickedness passes across Saruman’s face.  I loved it!  Intrigue and nervousness among the White Council… sounds great except it doesn’t exist in J.R.R. Tolkien like that.   Nowhere in the books did the Dúnedain show the ability to imprison the Nazgûl.  This is our first evidence of the filmmakers applying new narrative invention with material culled from the Appendices of LOTR.  We evidently won’t see the Battle of Fornost or hear Glorfindel’s famous prophecy being uttered about the Witch-King’s ultimate fate, as his dark enemy flees into the distance.  So be prepared to tell your non-Tolkien reading friends what really happened with the Nazgûl.

Cut to the prison-crypt, where Gandalf is investigating in the dark, using only his staff as a light source, and then BAM! there’s Radagast right behind him.  Here is the wonderful Sylvester McCoy giving us a daftly adorable new wizard.  Strange that Radagast is not shown as a member of the White Council, though.  Setting that aside, I must admit McCoy’s portrayal, along with Martin Freeman’s wonderful Bilbo, are the two performances I most admire so far.

Radagast?  Oh let me tell you, he’s got so much going on!  He is wearing a funnily-shaped hat with dominant brown and black hues, underneath which is revealed a bird’s nest with hatchlings making a mess all in his hair and beard!  McCoy brings a disarming, childlike quality to the character.  As Gandalf whips around to see who is sneaking up on him, he exhales rather irritated, “Oh, it’s you,” followed by Radagast’s frightened admission that the crypt they’re standing in “is not a nice place to meet.”  He also has a glowing crystal piece in his staff, and leaning over the vertical shaft, they both look down over the edge, as Gandalf counts a total of nine tombs, all with their spells broken and bars ripped.

I’m not remembering these clips in the correct order they were shown, but we also see a brief shot of Radagast being pulled along the forest floor in a sled drawn by mighty grey jackrabbits!  I kid you not, it was a ramshackle version of an Iditarod dogsled, made of twisted branches and bracken, pulled by six or seven oversized rabbits.  I think it was Radagast, but he went by so fast — what other character could it be?  And this point the filmmakers are making a complete departure from Tolkien but it honestly doesn’t bother me.  I like the idea that the writers and WETA’s clever artists can come up with something wholly new.  It seems quite silly on paper, but it’s also whimsical enough to fit in nicely with the tone of The Hobbit book.  It’s definitely no sillier than a line-up of farm animals setting up a feast and doing catering service in Beorn’s house, is it?

I believe this Radagast will be a most memorable character that moviegoers love to love.  I think he’s an innovation for this story.  Can’t wait to see more of McCoy in this role.

  • Riddles in the Dark with Sméagol/Gollum and Bilbo

This is where Martin Freeman really has a few minutes to shine.  But it’s insane to think anyone can outshine Andy Serkis in the perfection of his Gollum creation.  Mr. Freeman holds his own and it’s a wonderful characterization of a new Hobbit we have never quite seen.  This Bilbo Baggins doesn’t remind me of Merry or Pippin, even though he has a light comedic touch.  He certainly isn’t like Sam or Frodo, and yet the Baggins’ sense of adventure is written in his eyes in subtle ways.  Yes, I can see those kinds of details at 48 fps.

How does Gollum look ten years later?  Have the digital animation masters at WETA created something new?  Well, in this writer’s opinion, Gollum looks really fantastic, but not like a reinvented wheel.  He is the very familiar and pitiable Sméagol/Gollum we already know/love/hate.  He and the other CGI creations fare quite well with the enhanced clarity of this higher frame rate.  These two most classic of Tolkien’s characters engage in a bizarre moment of competing desires to eat raw flesh versus the desire to escape alive, all handled with a funny light touch.  Expect this Riddle Game to be a standout episode in the first installment.

  • The Trolls – Tom, Bert and Bill – all with dialogue!

The sequence with Bilbo trying to pickpocket a massive Stone Troll is another highlight that was given a more minutes of continuous screening time before cutting to other shots.  We have seen the statues of the Trolls in THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING, especially in the Extended Edition, and now they are finally alive and moving — and *speaking!*  They have heavy Cockney accents and, as expected, are quite brutish and primarily motivated by hunger.  Still don’t know the names of the voice actors providing the Tolkien-true performances.  The digital compositing of Bilbo against the larger-scale Trolls wasn’t exactly cleaned and finished, but it’s impressive when the camera moves overhead to let the audience pretend they’re sitting on a branch watching the mayhem below.  The birds-eye view helps the trick of scale, methinks.  Here, however, the Dwarves do not approach the Troll’s campfire piecemeal, as in the book, but come charging forward in a brave attempt to rescue their comrade.  Kili makes the first decisive stroke against one Troll’s calf-muscles,  then we see Thorin chopping relentlessly at their feet, screaming “DROP HIM!” which they do.  We do not see the famous Gandalf “DAWN TAKE YOU ALL AND BE STONE TO YOU” moment.

  • Gandalf in Dol Guldur with Thráin

This was just a little bit of this, but it leads up to the stuff in the teaser trailer.  Gandalf is seen skulking about in Dol Guldur’s dungeon level (this is the closest we will ever get to sounding like a Dungeons & Dragons module) acting very much like he is being followed.  Trying to elude the unseen pursuer in the dark passageways, our grey wizard twists about in every direction, still not seeing his foe.  Then there’s a horror-movie JUMP! moment when Thráin pounces on Gandalf.  No other dialogue or follow-up, it was over as fast as that.  What I’d really like to see is the moment where the crazed-from-torture Thráin actually calms down enough to give Gandalf the key and map!

  • Legolas and Tauriel in an action sequence and a tense threat to Thorin!

I witnessed the whole Company of Dwarves struggling through Mirkwood forest, greenscreen everywhere, and most obviously they were covered with spiderwebs and goo.  Their run through the forest is abruptly cut short with an arrow in Thorin’s face.  It is rather reminiscent of the bit in FELLOWSHIP where Haldir and his team bring weapons to bear against Frodo.  Too bad I didn’t see anything of the new Tauriel character played by Evangeline Lilly — except one swooping action shot where she slides cowboy-style across the ground with her bow drawn, ready to kill…  Fans have asked only one question about this invented character: what does she look like?  Well, brown is what she looks like.  I mean, she is sporting the same outfit we’ve seen Legolas wear but not in green.  Her hair is not blonde — actually she seems to be the first chestnut brown-haired Elf we have seen in PJ’s adaptations. Orlando Bloom makes a triumphant return to the role of Legolas spitting out a venomous threat to Thorin: “I won’t hesitate to kill you, Dwarf.”  I’ve never heard Legolas sound quite so pissed off.  It’s really, really cool.

WHAT WE DID *NOT* SEE

I need to address the hundreds of questions that came during our live webcast.  Everyone was eager to see their certain favorite things from The Hobbit represented but I’ve only got what they gave me.  Here is a quick list of the more glaring abentees:

  • Bree.  The HOBBIT characters don’t seem to be shown traveling to familiar LOTR locations.
  • Weathertop, anyone?
  • Elves on horseback teasing the Company of Dwarves.
  • Gandalf having a conversation with Thráin.
  • Any Dwarves singing. This was such a powerful moment in the teaser trailer, but it wasn’t shown at CinemaCon.
  • Goblins or the Goblin-King. I’m just dying to see what they design for these guys.
  • Stone Giants high in the Misty Mountains.
  • Thranduil the Elven-King of Mirkwood. Nowhere to be seen.
  • Much more of Tauriel.  Sorry, there was just that one shot.
  • The Carrock
  • The Wargs/Goblins scene with the burning pine trees.
  • Any great Eagles.  This is still a mystery whether they will be shown talking or not.
  • Beorn or his environment.
  • Radagast’s home, Rhosgobel.
  • A single giant spider.
  • Bilbo above the canopy of Mirkwood, the air filled with dark butterflies.
  • Long Lake, or any residents of the area, or the ruins of Dale.
  • Billy Connoly as Dáin, cousin to Thorin.
  • The Lonely Mountain/Erebor
  • The great dragon Smaug himself.  I expect he’ll be the most closely guarded creature design secret in film history.
  • Basically anything that would be in the 2nd installment in 2013.

THE 48 fps ‘CONTROVERSY’ SUCH AS IT IS

So now that we’ve covered all those juicy bits, where do we stand with the current conversation of people not universally embracing this new film format?  It seems, upon a quick review of the interwebs that there are mixed voices — and some who just don’t like the higher-resolution of 48 frames per second.  It’s not surprising at all.  Really, nothing should be taken too far or too broadly as to suggest the footage PJ showed at CinemaCon was a failure in any way.  It’s just a matter of taste.

My gut reaction to what I saw was: “Wow, that sure does look different,” because like everyone, I’ve been used to the film-like quality of projected images used throughout my lifetime of going to the theater.

Does it look like High-Def video?  Yeah, sort of.  The image is actually so pristine, crystal clear, and brightly contrasted that I did have a moment of thinking it was like live broadcast HDTV.  But it hasn’t been color-corrected yet, and many nuances of shade and light will be adjusted before December 14, 2012.

The footage will look different by the time the editing process is complete, that’s the one thing we can be sure of.  I would like to refer to an excellent conversation thread in our message boards where Ringer fan Owain has smartly observed what is happening here.  HDTV sets falsely create a look of “high frame rate” by duplicating frames that aren’t there, while the RED Epic cameras PJ employs are shooting the actual real-time source.  But it is not going to be to everyone’s taste.  If you would rather see it on traditional 24 fps, there will be plenty of theaters around who will show it that way.  Not every theater in every city will have completed the digital upgrade, so expect a wealth of choices when buying your ticket at different box offices.  It’s also very true what Owain said, “Human nature likes gradual instead of major/abrupt change.”

But when you look at the advent of 48 fps as a sea-change in the exhibition of movies, you can’t ignore the conclusion that film is dead.  Period.  We are already beyond the point of no return with other old film and television formats (Silent film, B&W, Beta, VHS, Laserdisc, etc.) that are gone the way of the dodo.  The newest generation of an audience is used to watching everything in high-definition.  If today’s filmmakers attempt to bring a new technology into our theaters to make the experience more realistic and lifelike (whether it’s advanced 3D or higher frame rates), that will also necessarily take us further from the age-old problems of stuttering, strobing and print scratches we have put up with for decades as moviegoers, only because there was no alternative.

A friend told me that PJ is not making a fantasy movie here; rather he’s making something to look as close to ‘reality’ as he can.  Therefore the 48 fps in 3D is perfect for bringing hightened realism to this movie experience.  Another friend countered that point by saying it’s harder to accept the fantastical when it’s looking so real-world.  Hmmmm.

It may polarize viewers.  Perhaps this will be an interesting barometer of taste across age groups, if nothing else.  I expect the older audiences like what they like, and the younglings are ready to embrace something fundamentally different.  As consumers, we will not suffer from a lack choices to seeing our beloved Middle-earth in the traditional form of 24 fps projection versus the shiny new one.  So it’s a win-win for everyone, and will be a test of how far the mass marketplace is willing to go with the newest technical zeitgeist.

If you throw pasta at the wall and it sticks that’s great, and if not, that’s fine too.  Just go back to cooking it awhile longer.

Much too hasty,
Quickbeam

* Follow Clifford Broadway on Twitter @quickbeam2000

Producer & co-writer of the award-winning documentary feature RINGERS: LORD OF THE FANS (Sony Pictures Home Video, 2005), Clifford has contributed to two volumes published by TheOneRing.net representing their best articles & essays: The People’s Guide To J.R.R. Tolkien from Cold Spring Press (2003), with a foreword by Tom Shippey, well-known Tolkien scholar and author of The Road to Middle-earth.

Posted in Andy Serkis, Barlimans, Cate Blanchett, Christopher Lee, Conventions, Director news, Evangeline Lilly, Fans, Headlines, Hobbit Cast News, Hobbit Movie, Hobbit Movie FAQ, Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Miscellaneous, Peter Jackson, Production, Richard Armitage, Studios, Sylvester McCoy, TORn TUESDAYS Live!, Uncategorized, Warner Bros. on April 27, 2012 by

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90 responses to “Hobbit Footage Review & MASSIVE SPOILERS: Full Coverage & Analysis!”

  1. I can understand the exclusion of Glorfindel, but imprisoning the Nine? That’s ridiculous.

  2. Asjdajsdkj says:

    Good that’s an extra space in the theatre for me

  3. Swordwhale says:

    as a recreational musher with a random 3-dog rescue team…. I’ll be waiting for the “sled with jackrabbit turbo”…. bwaa haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

  4. Swordwhale says:

    “A friend told me that PJ is not making a fantasy movie here; rather he’s making something to look as close to ‘reality’ as he can. Therefore the 48 fps in 3D is perfect for bringing hightened realism to this movie experience. Another friend countered that point by saying it’s harder to accept the fantastical when it’s looking so real-world. ”

    I agree with PJ. In fantasy, you need to ground thoroughly in reality, to make the fantastic elements believable. In Narnia: lions must look like lions first, before they speak, and the centaur’s other half better move like a real equine or I’m going to be snorting invectives (as a lifelong horseman). Even highly stylized films like Aardman’s cartoons are still full of incredible details (witness; Pirates) that make their worlds believable. You do not need a fuzzy wuzzy cutesey wootsey vaseline smeared rosecolored lens to make it “feel like fantasy”.

  5. L.J. Kiosq says:

    While I doubt it, it would be nice to get a glimpse of him, or many a passing reference. Hey, if Radagast can make a surprise appearance, why can’t Bombadil?

  6. L.J. Kiosq says:

    No one wants to walk out of the theater after watching the Hobbit and say “Well, THAT was terrible.” I most of all. But I honesty can’t say whether 48 fps is better or worse than 24 fps until I have seen it for myself.

    My only hope is that everyone will withhold their judgment or praise until the film is released and they get to see it with their own eyes. 

  7. S says:

    It sure would be nice if TORn would, just once, deal with the question of the millions of people around the world who physically CANNOT watch 3D.  It’s not a matter of “taste” with us, you know.  It’s a matter of how our eyes work.  PJ’s vaunted “revolution” will shut out all those people, and we are not some older generation who will die out eventually.  The problem is something that will always exist, and if filmmakers go whole hog for the 3D thing (which they’d be insane to do, since films in 3D keep hemorrhaging money), then they will be shutting out literally millions of viewers around the world.  What filmmaker would do that deliberately?  PJ and his pal Cameron, apparently, without looking back.

    TORn is supposed to be “for the fans”.  So why do you ignore the many of us that have this problem?  Why don’t you bring it up when you email or interview PJ?  WHY ARE WE INVISIBLE HERE?

  8. S says:

    “the LotR and the Hobbit will feel as incompatible as Star Wars and The Muppets.”

    I would say they’ll feel as incompatible as the first Star Wars trilogy and the second.  Lucas went so whole hog with the CGI that it literally did not look like the same universe as the one in the classic trilogy.

  9. S says:

    Maybe because the stories are CONTINUOUS?  They take place in the same countries in the same world, only 60 years apart.  So yeah, continuity is very important here.

  10. S says:

    Methinks there are going to be some very angry theater owners, once they sink money into the new system and find their audience takes dwindling.  The theaters that have did so with 3D are already hurting, as every 3D movie released makes less money than the last one.

  11. EPC says:

    Agree. Jackson took a few liberties with the LOTR plot line to make a better MOVIE. He is in the movie/entertainment business, not the curator of Tolkien’s estate.
    If you told the story exactly as it’s told in the book, The Hobbit would be a crappy movie.
    I want to say “if you don’t want to see it, don’t see it” but I’m pretty sure you WILL see it so you can bore us with more of your tedious purist whining. The ego of the purists easily exceeds Peter Jackson’s.

  12. Tshoffie says:

    Whats so wrong with wanting a proper adaptation of the book…why even call it the hobbit or lord of the rings  if your gonna change major things  and  remove this and that and add this and that which were never even in the book…you might as well call the film something else…in my mind is all a cash grab scheme  aimed at cashing in on the novels without any real respect..Jackson should be Ashamed of himself

  13. Hakkaniii says:

    It all sounds pretty great, with the exception of the imprisoned Nazgul, which leads to some pretty severe plot holes (like, if the Nazgul were imprisoned and never destroyed the Northern Kingdom why is Aragorn a ranger, forced to live in shadows?). Let’s hope PJ can pull it off well enough that no one even notices or cares.

  14. WalterNeff says:

    I was there – hated it. (Loved the 30 min. of Brave they showed, though)

  15. Kate Galey says:

    As another victim of 3D, I know the frustration of this new 3D obsession. But it’s not like we don’t have options. Almost every theater I’ve been to that shows a 3D film also shows it in the traditional format. If we don’t have that option, we still have these: 
    http://www.2d-glasses.com/ They serve the same function as 3D glasses, but in reverse, turning the image into something we can stomach. You can’t blame the creative types for getting excited about innovation. Blame Hollywood for pushing it on us.

  16. Who cares says:

    So respected film critics are right, but respected director be damned! What a stupid insignificant thing to complain about. Every single person on here is going to see this movie stop lying to yourselves to try and put down people who don’d immediately write off something new you hipster freaks. 

  17.  That has NOTHING to do with the refresh rate of your TV!  It’s a setting called ‘motion interpolation’ that adds a frame between each frame to reduce motion blur.  This is a separate issue from how fast your TV can refresh the image, which is helpful for watching sports and action movies.  TURN THIS SETTING OFF ON YOUR TV!  It’s an optional setting that many new HDTV default to for some reason.  The fact that your new TV looks like it is displaying a soap opera shouldn’t be shrugged off and assumed that this is the latest fad.  What is wrong with people these days that do ZERO research of technology and just accept something that looks inferior to a medium that was previously improving in quality (blu-ray).

  18.  You couldn’t be more wrong.  I was about to type a long rebuttal, but people are so challenged technology-wise that’s it’s pointless.  Millions of people think American Idol is awesome too, but I’m not going to waste any more breath letting them (and you) know how unfortunately wrong you all are.

  19. Lieke says:

    Exactly! A story in a book looks way different on screen, sometimes even looks bad on screen. Peter is just making a film BASED on The Hobbit. I think he’s making the movie very much like the book, but he needs to get to the audience who haven’t read the book too. They probably won’t like it if it’s exactly like the book.

  20. hypnosifl says:

     Announcing that 48fps is the next great thing because Peter Jackson says so is ludicrous, especially if it looks WORSE than 24fps.

    You realize that the higher the frame rate, the closer it is to looking like the everyday reality you see with your eyes, right? It’s not like the only place you see a high frame rate is watching soap operas. We’ve just been conditioned to associate a slightly flickery quality to motion with film and more realistic smooth motion with video (not just soap operas, also things like news casts and sports games)

  21. Nonamer87 says:

     IF he wants to show the mighty elves, let him make a movie The Elves of Middle Earth, BASED on Tolkien stories,  he can show them destroy whatever he chooses for all I care. Legolas taunting/intimidating Thorin? Really? Thorin? The most single – minded, bull – headed character in the book? The movie’s based on a book called the Hobbit, which features prominently a Hobbit (duh), a wizard and a merry bunch of dwarves. Tombs of Nazguls, Tauriel, Legolas, I’m fine with them appearing in the movie but  I don’t care about some ill – conceived elf badassness and don’t want to see it. I’m not a book purist but neither I agree with PJ’s fascination with elves in this movie. It’s the same if I’d make a movie about Fingolfin or Feanor and adding in a dwarf or two stealing the show and making a fool of basic characters. Of course we’ll have to watch the movie first to see how these things unfold, but I’m just saying my 2 cents here.

  22. Calling you out! says:

    So every four in five scenes PJ changed in Lord of the Rings was bad?

    Having Aragorn doubt whether he could resist the evil influence of the Ring wasn’t bad. Gandalf fighting Saruman in FOTR wasn’t bad.
    Gollum and Smeagol’s conversation in TTT wasn’t bad.
    Faramir’s desire to show his quality in TTT wasn’t bad.
    Frodo NOT being fifty years old when he embarks of the adventure in FOTR wasn’t bad.
    The elves showing up at Helm’s Deep to help the men of middle-earth one last time before they leave in TTT wasn’t bad.
    Exploring the love Aragorn and Arwen had for each other more deeply so that we cared for them throughout the trilogy wasn’t bad.
    Having Merry and Pippin be the ones to convince Treebeard to go to war against Saruman in TTT wasn’t bad.
    The Battle between the Riders of Edoras and the Wargs in TTT wasn’t bad.
    Having Boromir’s death be the climax of FOTR instead of the opening of TTT wasn’t bad.
    Gollum managing to create a rift between Sam and Frodo in ROTK wasn’t bad
    Both Frodo and Gollum slipping off the ledge in Mount Doom while fighting for the Ring in ROTK wasn’t bad.

    Alright. So write forty-eight changes that PJ and crew made that WERE bad and I will believe that every four scenes in five that were changed was bad.

  23. Calling you out says:

    So I guess that instead of Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit everyone will be happy watching the 1977 version…which doesn’t have Beorn, doesn’t have the Arkenstone,no Dain II Ironfoot, no Master of Laketown, ugly Mirkwood elves, a frog for Gollum, several dwarves dead, including Bombur, and Gandalf knowing Bilbo has the One Ring and letting him keep it anyway.

    Maybe people would prefer if Micheal Bay direct The Hobbit?

    Elrond could then be played by Megatron.

  24. Slwstr says:

    Well, actually 48fps in cinema is analogous to 48hz refreshing in TV, while 24fps in cinema is akin to something so primitive as 24hz in tv.

    Educate yourself before you are playing mantor to others.

  25. Slwstr says:

    What are you talking about exactly? What kind of impairment makes you unable to watch 3D films? For the sake of argument, let’s not talk about 2D versions.

  26. armchairnavigator says:

    3D adds nothing to a movie in my opinion – the simple fact is that it doesnt really matter what medium you watch a movie on, after quarter hour or so, if its any good, you will forget all about the screen resolution, screen size, 3d-ness, 24 to 48fps … so for glasses wearers, 3D is not only pointless, but also very annoying.

  27. Beren says:

    No one can say Jackson’s addaption of LOTR was crap. So much hard work, thought, guts and courage go into these films, we should cut them a bit of slack when everything isn’t in line with our own version of perfection. Enjoy the books- enjoy the films, life goes on. But Jackson has thus far left us with much to admire. I don’t see him letting us down; bookworms or movie buffs.

    Many thanks Sir Peter! And all involved…

  28. Ian says:

    Because the last few imprisoned the witch king after he destroyed the kingdom?

  29. julio espin says:

    This will be the Godfather III of the Tolkien films.

  30. I dont care what he changes or what he does not change IT’S THE FREAKIN HOBBIT ON THE BIG SCREEN IT WILL BE AMAZING kk ty for letting me say that.

  31. Coojooo says:


    In fantasy, you need to ground thoroughly in reality

    Everything you said is so wrong and you know it.

  32. Oshun says:

     Both eyes have to work together. If one only has vision in one eye or unequal impairment one may see a staggered three times repeat of an image instead of the image jumping off the screen at them. In my case, I get nauseous after a few minutes and dizzy when I leave the theater and have impaired depth perception for a while afterwards, cannot drive after seeing one, for example. It is real and not in one’s head.

  33. MarvelWatch says:

    Adapt: change to fit, modify, make suitable for a new use or purpose.
    Adaptation: 
    Something that is changed so as to become suitable to a new or special application or situation.

  34. GilRidgendir says:

    Thank you, “Calling you out”, for saying what I was thinking…..
    Malcontent needs a nap, some rest to recover one’s strength….

  35. Calling you out! says:

    You are most certainly welcome.

  36. Cali says:

    I think we can all agree that books are vastly superior to film adaptations. But if you consider PJ’s work as films in their own right, and NOT adaptations of a much loved book, you’ll see they’re amazing and an incredible achievement. Give the guy a chance The Hobbit won’t be Tolkien’s book, but we still have that, it’ll be something different .

  37. nestentrie says:

    All these people complaining about commas and full stops should shut up already

  38. Mo-mo says:

    No matter what, the movie WILL be at least a bit different from the book. Every book-movie is like that. As long as the movie still seems genuine, I will be happy. The LOTR movies were different from the books, and I still love both the books and the movies. 🙂

  39. Bouke says:

    PJ just wants to make the movie WORK. LOTR for example was different but he didn’t rape the books. I think the same is gonna go down with the Hobbit. We should be glad people are trying to make films of unfilmable books. Remember the books will not change by a movie adaption, it’s just an interpretation of the book. I try to clear my mind of the books and just enjoy the movies.

  40. Ron says:

    Good, that makes one more seat available for a sensible person.

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