Editor Note: Our next review comes from long time collaborator and friend of TheOneRing.net, David Baxter. David has been involved in some manner with TheOneRing.net since the early 2000s, and is a staple at events in California. Being that he is 6’8″ – he makes a really impressive Gandalf too!
Let me get this out of the way, I did not go into the screening of The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug expecting to see all or even many of the events I’d pictured in my head after reading JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit and seeing the Rankin & Bass animated version in 1977 (dating myself here). It was impossible after seeing Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Too much of that film had been devoted to setting up or showing events that were never shown in Tolkien’s work and were only mentioned in the appendices of The Return of the King.
Editor Note: Our second staff review comes from staffer and author, Kili – Yes, half of the Happy Hobbit team. The Happy Hobbits were TheOneRing.net official representatives at the ‘black’ carpet premiere of ‘The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug’ this past Monday in Hollywood, CA. (You can see the unedited video coverage in our uStream archive)
As a word of warning, Kili’s review is filled with SPOILERS from the very beginning. If you are avoiding spoilers of any type, please know — you have been warned!
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I have never been in more denial of a black screen than I was when Bilbo’s distraught face smashed to darkness. The seconds seemed to crawl by long enough for me to think it was a trick and that more footage was coming, but then the words “Directed by Peter Jackson” appeared on the screen, and the heart-wrenching truth was evident: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug had ended. I am still appalled that I have to wait a year to find out what happens next. None of the Lord of the Rings films ever came close to this type of cliff hanger. It’s like going on a roller coaster then when you reach the top of the biggest hill, you don’t get to go down, and I mean that in the best way possible.