The hobbit : An unexpected journey [based on the book by] by dir. by

16 December 2012

Script: , , ,
Cast: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Rated :

I really have no idea where to start this review. I mean, there is no point in recapping the plot is there? Either you’ve read the book, or see LOTR, or heard somewhere else that “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit” and how he went on adventures with some dwarves looking. I can’t imagine there are too many people out there who can please ignorance to the whole LOTR/Hobbit phenomenon.

And I know that this is not going to try and be some objective review on the filmmaking or story-telling, because that’s not what I do.

So, just my ramblings and observations.

The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey poster

The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey poster

I went in with low expectations. I didn’t think it could be as good as LOTR and didn’t want it to try and be the same sort of film. The books are very different after all, why shouldn’t the films. And although I tried to avoid and ignore all reviews I couldn’t help but hear a few rumblings from the belly of the internet saying that some people weren’t very happy with The Hobbit.

I, however, loved it.

It does have issues, in places I found the cgi not entirely convincing, and in one or two scenes the action seemed speeded up and happening too fast. Storywise I’m not sure it needed “Old Bilbo” and Frodo in it. I think that maybe at the end of the third film would have been sufficient. And I do think it was a trifle long. Although I am willing to be told that was just because I was being especially time conscious on account of having a bus to catch.

But for the most part I thought it fantastic.

I loved young Bilbo and his being uprooted by Gandalf. A younger, an slightly more insecure Gandalf than from the LOTR. He is more irritable too I think, but not in a mean way. And anyone might be irritated by the behaviour of some among the dwarves :)

There are plenty of changes and additions to the story. Some from the appendixes, some not. I liked them and how they worked in the film, however if you are someone who doesn’t like anything changed then you just may have a long list of complaints. I have also heard mention that some people found the film slow, or boring! Quite how they managed to do so I don’t know. I loved the set-up, and the getting to know the characters, and the setting the scene, and the songs. I’m not certain what to make of the idea that there will also be an extended dvd version though. But the more time I get to spend in Middle Earth the better.

I loved the Gollum scenes. They were just great, this is a different Gollum than in LOTR remember. Yes, evil and tricky and murderous. But also somehow more light-hearted and innocent. I guess a trip to the torture chambers will do that.

And Smaug! Oooooh. We didn’t see much of him but what little we did was just brilliant. Cheesy peas

Now, when do I go see it again?

Other reviews : Stainless Steel Droppings; Edrants ; Screen Rant

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1 Response

  1. Harlequin says:

    "he went on adventures with some dwarves looking" – well, that just sounds… wrong. :-)

    I loved it too and had also low enough expectations. I was also a bit put off by all the dwarf japery in Bag End and the Old Bilbo framing device. But once that was past, I just grinned all over my face so many times! The music! Hobbiton! Rivendell! It was like being back home again. I loved it.

    Presumably by the end of the the third film, all the dwarves will have gotten a bit more screentime each but in this film the ones who stood out for me were Kili (because I ADORE Aidan Turner and he's not only pretty and badass, he's a gorram archer to boot and I love me an archer) and of course, Thorin. Richard Armitage has been on my radar for a few years now and I was so pleased when he was cast because he's a terrific actor who doesn't get much recognition. But what he did with Thorin exceeded all my hopes. He was WONDERFUL. He became Thorin, just as Viggo became Aragorn. I'm so looking forward to seeing more of him next time.

    Other standouts were of course Ian McKellan, very much grumpier but still awesome as Gandalf, Andy Serkis utterly perfect as Gollum (I'm assuming we won't see any of him in the next film and it is SUCH a shame) and Martin Freeman was a fantastic Bilbo.

    My favourite scenes were the bits in Rivendell, with all our old friends gathering together – and lovely Bret McKenzie's cameo! – and the terrific fight-and-flight sequence in the Great Goblin's cave. Also thoroughly enjoyed the dwarven diaspora backstory – so, so sad! And Bilbo's reason for remaining with the Dwarvenship when he really wanted to go home was wonderfully well done.

    All in all, I'm very happy. It's still not up there with the glories of LotR but very damn close. And I am already shivering with anticipation at the thought of the Battle of the Five Armies, when Jackson did such wonderful things with the battles in Two Towers and Return of the King. I want the hairs to stand up on the back of my neck as they still do when I even THINK of the March of the Ents, the Ride of the Rohirrim or Aragorn's speech at the Black Gates. I also know that I will be crying my eyes out, just as I did over Theoden King. *sniff*