Dec 18 2013, 1:31pm
almost 100% agree with the OP. I've been tempted a few times already to write my own review here but I decided to wait, because I almost got out of the movie in full hot blooded anger at PJ and what he did. I needed time to get distance and perspective. So I think I have it now.
Re: HeadingSouth's review
- Thranduil being a prick. And a merciless killer, even against his own word. The hint to us all that he is the only one that fully understands what the doomed orc has said. There's a glimpse of First Age elve in him. Finally there's darkness in elves, they're not all like wise-Elrond, ethereal-Galadriel, goodguy-Legolas or slowtalker-Celeborn.
In a way, this portrayal shows us yet another glimpse of the world Tolkien created.
- Tauriel - I don't mind her at all, quite the contrary I think she was a fine addition to the story. She helps us understanding that there is a class / caste system within the elves. And that's another glimpse of Tolkien's secondary world.
- Bard - I think PJ's crew found a brilliant way for us to connect with such an important character. Again, I don't mind at any of the "invented" stuff about him, because it solely expands. Him having a family is nice, him being the one that smuggles the dwarves into LakeTown, him being tortured by a "supposed failure" of his ancestor, him keeping the last black arrow. No problems too with it not being used with a bow. Grim character, and I liked his portrayal.
- Master of LakeTown and Alfrid - Considering childrens's books nowadays "en vogue", it almost is a shock to read Tolkien's Hobbit and find "politics" in it. If anything I think it's a bit overdone (they're too dirty and too obviously despicable), but I guess blockbuster makers think youth these days doesn't get subtlety very well. And dirty characters "a la" Pirates of the Caribbean got trendy I suppose. Anyway, overall I enjoyed seeing the Master of Lake Town being brought to life on screen, and didn't mind Alfrid (a counselor with a name is better than a few nameless ones, like the people we see in Elrond's Council and have no clue what they're doing there).
- Scenery and CGI - A great improvement over AUJ, where CG characters had just the quality of top end video games. This time Azog, Bolg, Spiders, Wargs, Beorn in bear form and, of course, the mother of all CGI characters, Smaug were all much more believable and "in" the movie, rather than obviously juxtaposed to it.
Story - Everything that happened with Bilbo/Dwarves/Dragon after the last great moment in the movie, which in my opinion is when Balin keeps Bilbo company up to halfway into his descent to the Dragon's lair. And the way Balin says that "Hobbits' courage will always amaze him".
Kili -Tauriel - Gimli's enchantment with Galadriel and his audacity to ask for a single golden hair of her to build a jewel around it is old school I guess.
Gandalf - I can only guess PJ wants to make him look stupid. "It's Undoubtebly a trap. Only Sauron can summon the Nazgul. Now go on to warn the others because I will walk straight into it. Alone. And forget stealth, that's too TOLKIEN for me. I'm not a thief trying to enter the Necromancer's dungeons unnoticed. I am Gandalf and even though I think it's probable that Sauron is here, that the Nine are here, that orcs are here .... I will tell them all to come forth. And then we'll see what happens.
Result? Nothing much, Sauron is merciful, spares his life and ... oh ... that another staff gone. No wait, this is the first.
I will not see this movie again, and that's the first time I do this with a movie based on the characters Tolkien created. With AUJ I had also a first (first time I didn't buy an extended version), but this time I really felt ... bad.
getting home I fired up my copy of the Rankin-Bass's Hobbit, just to watch "steallth" Bilbo's conversation with Smaug, and the way he reacted to the word "Revenge". Still the best Hobbit movie ever IMHO.
PS (about CGI and action scenes) - The "physically impossible" stuff remains happening, and the computer made actions scenes keep taking to much of this movie (and taking me away from it). Also, it was laughable the way those heavy, fully armored CGI orcs were silently jumping from rooftop to rooftop in Lake Town. Oh the graciousness of old school orcs ... I guess Saruman went backwards when he created those heavy Uruks, if Lurtz ever tried to walk over tiles I'm sure the downfall of a full home would follow.
(This post was edited by Hun200kmh on Dec 18 2013, 1:36pm)