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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
"The Hobbit" films ranked as among the worst out of 5,000+ films of the 2010s.

N.E. Brigand
Nevle-flah


Dec 31 2019, 7:50pm

Post #1 of 78 (2868 views)
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"The Hobbit" films ranked as among the worst out of 5,000+ films of the 2010s. Can't Post

Vulture.com has attempted to rank more than 5000 movies released over the past decade. You can read the entire list here. Any such project inevitably comes with a degree of silliness, but even I, no fan of The Hobbit films, think it is beyond ridiculous to rank them in (or near) the bottom one percent. Here is their entry:


Quote
5,254Ė5,256. The Hobbit Trilogy (but mostly just The Hobbit)

Itís not just that it was an utterly pointless project ó taking J.R.R. Tolkienís delightful, slim adventure and giving it the portentous, lumbering, interminable Lord of the Rings treatment, thereby somehow devaluing that earlier trilogy as well. Itís not even that ghastly high-frame-rate presentation that Peter Jackson tried to get away with, which made everything onscreen look like a washed-out making-of video. It was also just a *&^%$#@ terrible movie, with zero narrative momentum, thoroughly forgettable characters, and ó since they chopped up a tight little narrative into three parts ó no decent resolution. A case study in how not to make a movie.


For what it's worth, the film ranked in the absolute last position is Avengers: Endgame.


Treachery, treachery I fear; treachery of that miserable creature.

But so it must be. Let us remember that a traitor may betray himself and do good that he does not intend.


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2ndBreffest
Neirol


Dec 31 2019, 10:55pm

Post #2 of 78 (2710 views)
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well... [In reply to] Can't Post

that excerpt from the article is pretty on point. As far as worst movies of the past decade, I haven't seen all that many, but PJ's Hobbit certainly ranks up there on my personal list of worst movies of all time.


Omnigeek
Neirol


Jan 1, 3:01am

Post #3 of 78 (2686 views)
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Meh, stupid list based on your description [In reply to] Can't Post

I would rank them as some of the worst I've attended but there were a lot of movies in the 2010s that I didn't even bother going to based solely on the trailers or what I saw of the descriptions. I preferred Avengers: Inifinity War to End Game but any list that ranks End Game at the bottom, below Captain Marvel, Terminator Dark Fate, and the 2016 version of Ghostbusters just isn't worth looking at.


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Jan 1, 10:52am

Post #4 of 78 (2650 views)
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Surprisingly, I agree. [In reply to] Can't Post

Stupid AND pointless list. The specific points raised against The Hobbit trilogy also seem to be merely parroted from around the dark places of the Web. Laugh


(This post was edited by Paulo Gabriel on Jan 1, 10:53am)


2ndBreffest
Neirol


Jan 1, 3:19pm

Post #5 of 78 (2612 views)
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dark places of the web? [In reply to] Can't Post

those particular criticisms are fairly common on nearly all mainstream platforms.


Cirashala
Aessere Lot


Jan 1, 6:04pm

Post #6 of 78 (2600 views)
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I wouldn't go THAT far [In reply to] Can't Post

Smaug's animation, an Unexpected Party, Riddles in the Dark, Smaug and Bilbo inside Erebor, and Thorin's death ALONE should elevate it much higher in that list than that! IMHO, of course...that's simply my opinion.

Yeah, there are some things I REALLY would have done differently (Alfrid in BO5A, Legolas and Tauriel, and scrap that stupid love triangle). But to call it one of the worst out of 5,000 films is taking it too far, I think.

My writing and novels:

My Hobbit Fanfiction

My historical novel print and kindle version

My historical novels ebook version compatible with all ereaders

You can also find my novel at most major book retailers online (and for those outside the US who prefer a print book, you can find the print version at Book Depository). Search "Amazing Grace Amanda Longpre'" to find it.

Happy reading everyone!


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 2, 2:35pm

Post #7 of 78 (2358 views)
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ROTFL [In reply to] Can't Post

Not really Ė itís more ďmehĒ.

I just glanced at the top and bottom of this list. I donít go to many movies so I hadnít even heard of, never mind, seen many of the first thirty of their best. Some of the films at the bottom may not have been great movies but could hardly be placed amongst the worst of the decade. So meh.

As for the Hobbit movies, it was just the same old stuff: Peter Jackson going back to Middle-earth, the change from two-to-three films, the 48 fps. Yawn. Iím surprised that ďbutter scraped over too much breadĒ wasnít mentioned.

Iíd say that what I saw of the list, both the best and the worst, reflects a good deal of prejudice and pretension as well as a desire to be edgy and kewl.

I wonder where LotR would have placed.


N.E. Brigand
Nevle-flah


Jan 2, 7:40pm

Post #8 of 78 (2319 views)
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Not sure why "the same old stuff" shouldn't apply in restrospect. [In reply to] Can't Post

Surely in December 2029, people will be listing Cats as one of the worst films of the 2020s, and the reasons they give will be the very same reasons that Cats is being savaged right now.


Treachery, treachery I fear; treachery of that miserable creature.

But so it must be. Let us remember that a traitor may betray himself and do good that he does not intend.


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Solicitr
Rodnog


Jan 2, 10:14pm

Post #9 of 78 (2314 views)
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Which [In reply to] Can't Post

strikes me as meaning no more than that there is a critical consensus about them.


N.E. Brigand
Nevle-flah


Jan 3, 7:00am

Post #10 of 78 (2270 views)
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I haven't seen enough acclaimed 2010s films. [In reply to] Can't Post

Too few to be confident of my favorite of that decade, certainly, though I might pick The Death of Stalin or Arrival.

For the previous decade my choice would probably be The Son's Room, from Italy.

Today I was thinking about my favorite film of the 1990s: Life and Nothing More, aka And Life Goes On (the original Farsi title is Zendegi va digar hich), an Iranian faux-documentary directed by Abbas Kiarostami in 1991. It's the middle installment of his unplanned "Koker Trilogy" (which recently has been released on DVD and Blu-ray by the Criterion), book-ended by Where is My Friend's House? (1987) and Through the Olive Trees (1994). It's about a filmmaker who returns to the remote village where he filmed a children's movie in order to learn whether his amateur cast survived the devastating 1990 earthquake that killed 30,000 people.


Treachery, treachery I fear; treachery of that miserable creature.

But so it must be. Let us remember that a traitor may betray himself and do good that he does not intend.


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Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Jan 3, 7:11am

Post #11 of 78 (2265 views)
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Well, [In reply to] Can't Post

I have never seen those before, at least:

''somehow devaluing that earlier trilogy as well'' -- this objection doesn't even make sense if you think about it.

''Itís not even that ghastly high-frame-rate presentation that Peter Jackson tried to get away with, which made everything onscreen look like a washed-out making-of video'' -- this one may have been throw around before, but it's not popular AFAIK.

''thoroughly forgettable characters'' -- never seen this either. Couldn't they give an instance?

''no decent resolution'' -- no idea where this has come from either, and it also doesn't make sense.

Plus, the ''popular'' points are mostly made by trolls such as certain members here from the past, who seem to have some grudge against the idea of someone even daring to like these movies, which I personally find wonderfully made and with deep respect for the source material (plus I paid 300 bucks for all of the six, so obviously I will defend them to death) -- in my experience, at least. The casual audiences seem to have much more favourably views of the trilogy as well, so the ''Hobbit haters'' crowd are a minority, ''universally'' speaking. It's mostly on the Internet that we such this kind of buffoonery.


(This post was edited by Paulo Gabriel on Jan 3, 7:15am)


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Jan 3, 7:20am

Post #12 of 78 (2265 views)
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Probably because... [In reply to] Can't Post

they are tired and long-refuted arguments made ages ago. Hence his statement. Also, Cats is actually, technically, from 2019.


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Jan 3, 7:24am

Post #13 of 78 (2267 views)
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To me... [In reply to] Can't Post

these particular movies are polarizing, there's no ''consensus'' by a long shot.

Aaaaaand a ''consensus'' means nothing because the number of people who hold to an argument has no effect whatsoever on whether it's true or even valid in the first place.

* * *

(Sorry for the triple posting, by the way. Too lazy to multi-quote, if that's possible in this board's platform).


(This post was edited by Paulo Gabriel on Jan 3, 7:26am)


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Jan 3, 8:46am

Post #14 of 78 (2251 views)
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Typo. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
It's mostly on the Internet that we such this kind of buffoonery.


It should have read ''[..]that we see this[..]'' I typed an extra ''such'' -- dunno why.


2ndBreffest
Neirol


Jan 3, 2:41pm

Post #15 of 78 (2220 views)
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so... [In reply to] Can't Post

anyone with an opinion that is not complementary towards PJ's movies is a buffoon? And of course the vast majority of opinions on movies (and basically everything else) will be on the internet...positive or negative. However, I have to say, most people who I have spoken to outside of the internet who had an opinion on PJ's Hobbit, were disappointed in how it turned out, for various different reasons, and some more than others, and now that being said, I have never met a PJ Hobbit superfan out in the wild.


(This post was edited by 2ndBreffest on Jan 3, 2:52pm)


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Jan 4, 10:33am

Post #16 of 78 (2107 views)
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Reply. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
anyone with an opinion that is not complementary towards PJ's movies is a buffoon?


In my experience at least, yes they are. Maybe they are not like this the whole time, but they display lack of basic critical skills and attention when commenting on these movies.


In Reply To
And of course the vast majority of opinions on movies (and basically everything else) will be on the internet...positive or negative.


At least where I live, a lot of people don't express their views online, and many are largely indifferent to PJ's Hobbit -- especially now, more than 5 years later.


In Reply To
However, I have to say, most people who I have spoken to outside of the internet who had an opinion on PJ's Hobbit, were disappointed in how it turned out, for various different reasons, and some more than others


We have different experiences then, and both of them should be respected. I have met both people who like and dislike PJ's Hobbit, but not a single person for reasons that are usually given here (i.e., fidelity to the book, etc.).


In Reply To
, and now that being said, I have never met a PJ Hobbit superfan out in the wild.


Well, somebody I saw back in 2014 on the way to the movie theater had a copy of Tolkien's book on the hands while about to enter the room, during a marathon of the first 2 movies before the final release of TBOTFA. So, a ''superfan''? Of both mediums, by the way. There's fanatics and fanatics. Smile


2ndBreffest
Neirol


Jan 4, 11:38am

Post #17 of 78 (2102 views)
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well... [In reply to] Can't Post

ok, thanks for clearing that up. Smile


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Jan 4, 2:04pm

Post #18 of 78 (2075 views)
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You're welcome! // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Jan 4, 3:06pm

Post #19 of 78 (2067 views)
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Criticisms and Compliments. [In reply to] Can't Post

I do think that critics should be able to acknowledge the high production values displayed in the Hobbit films even if they found the processes utilized as displeasing to them. I realize thatt the high frame-rate coupled with the 3D was disconcerting to some people. It actually worked to the advantage of my wife, who normally is susceptible to headaches brought on by 3D movies. My own problems with the films stem from story-telling decisions and from how the films work as adaptations; sometimes those issues cross over into both categories.

The love story between Tauriel and Kili has been one of the most contentious issues in the fandom. I don't think it's really fair to call it a love triangle; any potential romantic feelings between Tauriel and Legolas are never made explicit, and are actually vague enough that I've seen some posters deny that the films even hint at them. Legolas' feelings for Tauriel could be presented as brotherly concern and it would not change the movies one bit. Any blooming love between the Elf-maid and the Dwarf-prince remains in its infancy and is not given time to develop. Personally, that doesn't bother me too much as the pairing never really worked for me and I thought it was more distracting than anything else. However, I"m not about to attack anyone who liked those aspects of the films.

Do I think that Peter Jackson's penchant for physical comedy went too far at times? Yes. I didn't need to see smoke coming out of Radagast's ears or Dain riding a comically small pig. Yes, I would have liked dwarfier-looking Dwarves, but at least Thorin and Company didn't look like they had sneaked out of the universe of Time Bandits (with maybe an exception or two).

I do not want to turn this into a rant, so I'll stop here. It's not like I haven't made my opinions know over the years.

#FidelityToTolkien


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 4, 4:27pm

Post #20 of 78 (2057 views)
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You're not wrong. [In reply to] Can't Post

But not only do I disagree with those criticisms, Iím bored by them.

I had thought the other criticisms too inane to mention: the 48 FPS is a matter of opinion and taste (I liked it), there were many vivid characterizations in TH movies and there was certainly resolution to the story.

As for somehow devaluing the previous trilogy Ė I have long been mystified by book fans claiming that the movies had ruined the books for them, but the LotR trilogy? Did the Star Wars prequels devalue the original films?

As Okatu-Sempai said, at the very least critics should appreciate the high production values, which match if not exceed those of LotR. Maybe not the special effects or even the writing and direction, if they are not to oneís taste, but the cinematography, sound, music, sets and locations, costumes and accoutrements and, not least, the acting are outstanding.

Iíve never understood why fans and critics embraced the use of cutting edge technology in making LotR but rejected the more advanced tech on The Hobbit. Maybe it has something to do with the current fashion for retro technology.


Solicitr
Rodnog


Jan 4, 9:54pm

Post #21 of 78 (2026 views)
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Because [In reply to] Can't Post

the "more advanced" tech in TH wasn't as good, or didn't produce as good a result. LR was shot mostly on actual sets; Ian McKellen was actually driven to tears on TH, trying to "act" with a tennis ball on a stcik on a bare soundstage in front of a green screen. Nor did the CGI measure up, ten years of 'advances' notwithstanding: the Azanulbizar sequence and the 5A had none of the weight and heft of the CGI hordes of the LR prologue or Helm's Deep: they falt fake, weightless, like videogame enemies.

I will maintain that practical effects look better than CGI and should always be used except where flatly impossible. Programmed animation almost inevitably loses its tether to physical reality and produces cartoon physics, no matter how 'lifelike' the static models and lighting effects are.

Which was better: the OT muppet Yoda, or the prequel CGI Yoda?


2ndBreffest
Neirol


Jan 4, 10:15pm

Post #22 of 78 (2013 views)
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yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

"Newer" doesn't automatically equal "better". The higher-tech CGI in TH just looked ugly and not nearly as convincing as that used in LotR...and it was way overused. I get that they were trying to push the envelope and go for something new, but it just didn't work here.


kzer_za
Neirol

Jan 4, 10:27pm

Post #23 of 78 (2012 views)
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Worth noting that the beloved "baby Yoda" from Mandalorian [In reply to] Can't Post

Is mostly a real puppet.

But I do think the critiques of CG in The Hobbit, while valid, is sometimes exaggerated. Yes it does go overboard at times such as goblintown or stupid Smaug chase, but there are still a number of gorgeous landscape shots and some impressive elaborate sets such as Laketown and Dale (which they fully built for 30 seconds in the prologue and then destroyed for the ruins set). Admittedly B5A really pushes to absurd heights in some sequences, like that infamous Legolas shot.


(This post was edited by kzer_za on Jan 4, 10:41pm)


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 5, 5:05pm

Post #24 of 78 (1909 views)
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Opinion [In reply to] Can't Post

All this stuff about CGI versus is a matter of personal taste and opinion and mine are different from yours. The Hobbit movies look good to me Ė beautiful in fact. I've always thought that viewers' feelings about individual elements of the films were much influenced by their overall feelings about each movie as a whole, positive in my case, negative in others.

Iím well aware of Ian McKellenís difficulties on the green screen stage, and similar, if less extreme, issues for Mikael Persbrandt, especially because I just finished my most recent rewatch of The Hobbit and all its appendices a couple of weeks ago. Iím well aware of the use of real sets and locations versus green screen, people in suits versus digital Orcs , the extensive use of motion capture and so on.

Does anyone complain about the cave troll in FotR or Gollum being created digitally, or Shelob or bear Beorn or Smaug? Is it just Orcs? Green screen was used often in LotR for set and location extensions, at Helmís Deep for instance. One of LotRís big innovations was the development of software, now widely used, to create huge armies.

That being said, Iíve never been really able to make up my mind whether I prefer Orcs as people in suits, who are so obviously people in suits, or digital orcs which appear less human but are so obviously animated despite the use of motion capture for many of the characters. Perhaps Iím good with both.

Much as I love the landscapes of New Zealand as we see them in both trilogies, given the huge problems caused by the countyís changeable and sometimes extreme weather when both LotR and TH were shooting on location, I could hardly blame Peter Jackson if he never left the studio.

If I cared what critics think, I wouldnít have been a lover of Tolkienís books for almost thirty-five years before FotR was released, because I knew few other fans in those days. Come to think of it, it was just around this time of year in 1967 - the Christmas holidays - that I first read LotR, loaned to me by my high school English teacher.


Solicitr
Rodnog


Jan 5, 5:19pm

Post #25 of 78 (1911 views)
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Well, [In reply to] Can't Post

For Gollum, Andy Serkis was on set, as Gollum, wearing a mo-cap suit and acting the scene. That's vastly different from the TH approach of "pretend there's somebody there while a grip shouts lines from off-camera."


2ndBreffest
Neirol


Jan 5, 6:23pm

Post #26 of 78 (2392 views)
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CGI... [In reply to] Can't Post

I didn't care for the look of the 48fps or the cgi, but I think the problem has more to do with how these things were implemented. From now on, whenever someone asks for some examples for why I didn't like the Hobbit movies, I may just direct them to this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nuuWg4naU9o Sly


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Jan 6, 12:59am

Post #27 of 78 (2321 views)
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The Hobbit CGI CIRCUS [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes, that video includes some of the most video game-like moments most of which I could have done without.

#FidelityToTolkien


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Jan 6, 1:56am

Post #28 of 78 (2314 views)
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That video... [In reply to] Can't Post

was made by a Hobbit-movie fan. So I don't see how it helps your ''cause''.


2ndBreffest
Neirol


Jan 6, 9:14am

Post #29 of 78 (2282 views)
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yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

a Hobbit movie fan who admits that some of the cgi and action scenes are a bit silly. As far as my "cause", while it is true that unconvincing cgi and ridiculous action sequences account for only a fraction of my problems with this adaptation, the video also inadvertently highlights some of my other issues. Clearly the video may not convince fans of the movies that it is not a good adaptation, but to mind, it serves as an adequate trailer to the trilogy as a whole.


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 7, 3:07pm

Post #30 of 78 (2186 views)
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The video [In reply to] Can't Post

Watched that somewhat amusing video Ė anything can be made ridiculous when itís repeated over and over. However that makes it a misrepresentative and inaccurate sampling of The Hobbit movies.

The Hobbit novel is a light, funny, sometimes deliberately silly, almost fairy tale that suddenly turns epic and darker at Erebor. Unlike the more weighty and serious LotR films that are treated as history and only are leavened by moments of humour, The Hobbit movies, especially at first, are more intentionally humourous and are meant to be FUN. You know, fun. Many of the action sequences reflect that.

Of course all that changes abruptly once Fili is killed, and the already much darker tone of the films turns tragic, though humour creeps back in through the tears as Bilbo says goodbye to the Dwarves and returns home to the auction. But the bitter-sweet ending is definitely not as bitter as that of LotR.

I get it. One of the reasons that some here dislike TH movies is that they find at least some of the big action sequences in TH movies objectionable, because for them those sequences are too big, too silly, shouldn't exist at all or all of the above. Fair enough. But did anyone expect Smaug to be on set during his conversation with Bilbo? Of course Martin Freeman had to use his imagination and acting skills Ė as actors do - but he did it on a vast and beautifully dressed set with Smaugís dialogue performed by dialect coach Leith McPherson. She did a pretty good job. Elsewhere the actors were just off camera speaking their lines for their doubles or to their fellow actors. How should the film makers have created the Great Goblin? The trolls? The spiders? We can argue about stuff like people in suits versus digital Orcs forever; it is simply a matter of preference.

One of the few quibbles I had with Fellowship of the Ring the first time I saw it was how small conflicts in the book had been amped up, as in Balinís Tomb and Amon Hen, or invented altogether, like the wizardís duel. I soon came to understand and appreciate them and similar sequences in the subsequent films, and to recognize that this is PJís style. Many people dislike the confrontation between Thorin and Smaug in Erebor and it could have been done in many different ways. But a confrontation there was going to be because The Hobbit movie Dwarves are more like the Dwarves of LotR, like Gimli, than the cowardly weaklings of the Hobbit book. It would have been unsatisfying and unsympathetic if the former had behaved as the book Dwarves did.

Places like the Goblin tunnels, the Woodland Realm and Erebor had to be created digitally because they were too vast to be actual sets. There was no location in New Zealand that provided the exact geography that PJ wanted for the final battle. On the other hand, Bag End, Radagastís house, Rivendell, the Prancing Pony, Beornís house, Mirkwood, Dale, Laketown and parts of the Woodland Realm and Erebor were real, created in great detail and with great care by the design and fabrication people. All, whether real or digital, are amazing.

I love TH movies and though I have some quibbles and criticisms, the physical look of the films and the use of special effects are not amongst them.


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Jan 7, 3:32pm

Post #31 of 78 (2181 views)
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Of goblin-kings and stranger things. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I get it. One of the reasons that some here dislike TH movies is that they find at least some of the big action sequences in TH movies objectionable, because for them those sequences are too big, too silly, shouldn't exist at all or all of the above. Fair enough. But did anyone expect Smaug to be on set during his conversation with Bilbo? Of course Martin Freeman had to use his imagination and acting skills Ė as actors do - but he did it on a vast and beautifully dressed set with Smaugís dialogue performed by dialect coach Leith McPherson. She did a pretty good job. Elsewhere the actors were just off camera speaking their lines for their doubles or to their fellow actors. How should the film makers have created the Great Goblin? The trolls? The spiders? We can argue about stuff like people in suits versus digital Orcs forever; it is simply a matter of preference.


About the Great Goblin I'll only say that, whether he was created with practical effects or digitally, he did not need a production number to rival the show tune sung by King Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar. Smaug did not need to be three to five times the size he was in the book, requiring a Black Arrow that would more accurately be described as a ballista bolt in order to slay him. The tight, claustrophobic goblin tunnels did not need to be transformed into a maze of catwalks and bridges. For me, at least, it's not the techniques used to create them, it's the way they were conceived and visualized for the films. It's the shear amount of excess that bothers me, similar to the problems I had with Jackson's King Kong.

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jan 7, 3:37pm)


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 8, 2:52pm

Post #32 of 78 (2134 views)
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Fair enough. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
About the Great Goblin I'll only say that, whether he was created with practical effects or digitally, he did not need a production number to rival the show tune sung by King Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar. Smaug did not need to be three to five times the size he was in the book, requiring a Black Arrow that would more accurately be described as a ballista bolt in order to slay him. The tight, claustrophobic goblin tunnels did not need to be transformed into a maze of catwalks and bridges. For me, at least, it's not the techniques used to create them, it's the way they were conceived and visualized for the films. It's the shear amount of excess that bothers me, similar to the problems I had with Jackson's King Kong.


Fair enough. PJ made the choices he made and nobody has to agree with them. As weíve touched upon before, I too dislike the Goblin Kingís song.

No, they didnít have to make Smaug so large. I think I remember someone in TH Appendices mentioning that PJ very much wanted to make Smaug unique and distinguish him from other cinematic dragons, and he thought size would be one way. I think that was unnecessary because Smaug was superb and that is all down to the animation and Benedict Cumberbatchís performance. However that huge size adds a greater measure of implacability and omnipotence to the character.

But I was fine with the huge black arrow, the windlance as a red herring and Bardís actual confrontation with Smaug. I regard the movies as alternative versions of the books as well as adaptations and enjoyed many of the surprises the film makers served up Ė like how Bard killed the dragon. Sometimes I donít like the surprises, for instance in The Two Towers when Treebeard refused to help in the war with Saruman. It made me laugh at my own expectations but annoyed me at the same time; but then I didnít really care for the way the movies made the wise and dignified Ents into buffoons.

I really love most of the design choices made in all six movies, including the Goblin tunnels in TH. PJ wanted something novel for those. I liked how the Goblinís cavern, the Woodland Realm and Erebor were all vast open underground spaces, yet movement was still confined to walkways and stairs as if the characters were actually in tunnels. To my mind, all three realms were very well designed and executed, filled with atmosphere and interest. The Woodland Realm and Erebor were beautiful and even the Gobl


Kelly of Water's Edge
NahoR

Jan 25, 2:14pm

Post #33 of 78 (1602 views)
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To me, the problem with the nascent love story [In reply to] Can't Post

was that it ignores the cannon of the friendship between Legolas and Gimli being groundbreaking. It's a bit less significant if Kili and Tauriel formed that deep a connection prior to that. I think the tragedy of the Durin family was enough drama without that being thrown in. I suppose it was felt the original story was too male-heavy and needed at least one female character. Hey, if that was the issue why not have truly have made her the Captain of the Guard complete with the drunk scene and Bilbo feeling bad that she was going to get in trouble for their escape because she'd been decent?

I think a more general and significant issue is that The Hobbit was never really meant to be quite as epic as Lord of the Rings, and the trilogy attempted to make the story something it never was intended to be.


Kelly of Water's Edge
NahoR

Jan 25, 2:17pm

Post #34 of 78 (1595 views)
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Completely agree. [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes, the prequel trilogy had issues, but there were a few scenes - especially Riddles in the Dark and Thorin's death - which were just as good as anything in LOTR.


Solicitr
Rodnog


Jan 25, 6:11pm

Post #35 of 78 (1574 views)
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Subject [In reply to] Can't Post


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Yes, the prequel trilogy had issues, but there were a few scenes - especially Riddles in the Dark and Thorin's death - which were just as good as anything in LOTR.


Basically because, like the best scenes in the LR movies, PJ actually followed the book and used its dialogue.


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 26, 3:52pm

Post #36 of 78 (1521 views)
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The romance [In reply to] Can't Post

I too donít particularly care for the romantic aspect of the relationship between Tauriel and Kili either. That being said, IMO the Starlight Feast scene is one of the best of either trilogy Ė beautiful, moving and evocative of the Elves of the First Age. And the much loathed triangle consists of Legolas glowering a couple of times and his decision to leave the Woodland Realm. The entire thing occupies only a few minutes of screen time anyway.

For me, the Tauriel/Kili relationship worked better when it was about two young people from very different cultures, managing to see past the prejudices and hostility of their hide-bound elders and forge a deep connection. But I donít believe it detracts from canon Legolas/Gimli or Galadriel/Gimli because it died with Kili.

(I have wondered if PJ was not a fan of the romance either since he resisted the urgings of Boyens and Walsh to make Kili and Tauriel closer in height.)

I like Tauriel and think she enhances the movies, especially the subplot of her rebellion against Thranduilís isolationism. Several young women and girls of my acquaintance are big fans of the character. It was too bad that the emphasis in BotFA seemed to be more on her relationship with Kili.

As for the epic quality of the movies, I agree that the original story is more intimate than epic and changes had to be made to it to make it bigger. That, I have always believed, was inevitable given the expectations and requirements of the LotR movie fanbase and the studios funding the production. Also, movie Hobbit had to match the Middle-earth created in its predecessors. There was no going back after the LotR films and a small, more literal adaptation of TH was never going to happen. Myself, I was happy with the larger, more complex and detailed world that we saw in TH movies.


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Jan 26, 4:11pm

Post #37 of 78 (1520 views)
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Tauriel/Kili [In reply to] Can't Post

I've already explained how I felt the romance was underdeveloped. In addtion, it seemed like an unnecessary distraction from the main plot that didn't add any forward momentum to the films. In it's defense, though, the subplot did become narratively convenient once Jackson decided that some of the Dwarves would remain in Lake-town until after Smaug's attack. I also did appreciate the generational conflict between Thranduil and the younger Tauriel, something that would not have worked with Legolas (as his is at the time of the Quest of Erebor) and his father.

Tolkien did set up some animosity between the Wood-elves and the Dwarves, but it stemmed from events long before the time of Thorin Oakenshield and is not made nearly as explicit nor as bitter in the book as it becomes in the films.

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jan 26, 4:21pm)


Kelly of Water's Edge
NahoR

Jan 26, 7:47pm

Post #38 of 78 (1497 views)
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Without doubt [In reply to] Can't Post

LOTR coming before The Hobbit was an issue that couldn't be reversed once done. The unfortunate and unavoidable long delay between them also undoubtedly rushed production, as getting the acting portion of The Hobbit in the can while Sir Ian was still young enough to play a Gandalf who was younger than he was during LOTR had become an issue (perhaps with getting it done before the actors playing the elves who appeared in both trilogies visibly aged any further and getting Christopher Lee back as Saruman at all considering his advanced age being secondary issues).


Solicitr
Rodnog


Jan 27, 1:51am

Post #39 of 78 (1467 views)
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Yet... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
As for the epic quality of the movies, I agree that the original story is more intimate than epic and changes had to be made to it to make it bigger. That, I have always believed, was inevitable given the expectations and requirements of the LotR movie fanbase and the studios funding the production. Also, movie Hobbit had to match the Middle-earth created in its predecessors. There was no going back after the LotR films and a small, more literal adaptation of TH was never going to happen. Myself, I was happy with the larger, more complex and detailed world that we saw in TH movies.


That was precisely why the movies failed. Instead of "epic" what they got was "bloated" and "silly"- like a supermarket turkey that's 2/3 water and hormones. It didn't help that all the artificial epic-ness was concocted out of whole cloth, by writers who weren't up to the task.


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 27, 1:32pm

Post #40 of 78 (1409 views)
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LOL [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
That was precisely why the movies failed. Instead of "epic" what they got was "bloated" and "silly"- like a supermarket turkey that's 2/3 water and hormones. It didn't help that all the artificial epic-ness was concocted out of whole cloth, by writers who weren't up to the task.


Since IMO pretty much every word of that post is incorrect, we'll have to agree to disagree.


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 27, 1:55pm

Post #41 of 78 (1408 views)
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Can't disagree. [In reply to] Can't Post

Good point that the romance was actually underdeveloped. Maybe it would have worked better otherwise,

Perhaps they should have either developed the romance more fully or left it alone. For those who hate the entire concept, at least as it is the romance takes up very little time and narrative space.

I agree that the conflict between Tauriel and Thranduil works better than it would have between Legolas and his father. And having his attitude changed by Tauriel gives Legolas something else to do beside Orc-slaying.

IMO the movies needed to set up a reason for the animosity between the Wood Elves and the Dwarves of Erebor, not rely on ancient history known only to book fans.


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Jan 27, 3:26pm

Post #42 of 78 (1400 views)
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Perhaps so. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
IMO the movies needed to set up a reason for the animosity between the Wood Elves and the Dwarves of Erebor, not rely on ancient history known only to book fans.


That's a fair point, though Thorin's attitude was a bit extreme, extending to all Elves including Elrond's folk, who--when they lived in Eregion--had had a good relationship with the Dwarves of Khazad-dum (Thorin's ancestors).

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jan 27, 3:30pm)


Noria
Rodnog

Jan 28, 3:16pm

Post #43 of 78 (1323 views)
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I agree, Thorin's attitude was extreme. [In reply to] Can't Post

Was it ever explicitly stated why Thranduil appeared with an army on the heights above Dale and Erebor as the Dwarves were fleeing Smaug?

I thought that Thranduil was coming to lay siege to Erebor, in order to retrieve his wifeís white gems. I also thought, from Thorinís words to him, that Thranduil had refused to help the refugees. Hence the formerís extreme animosity towards all Elves, which admittedly was not entirely rational.

All of that is partly why I liked Tauriel and Kili, especially in AUJ. As I said before Ė two young people reaching past the bigotry and resentment of their elders to form a connection.


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Jan 28, 3:55pm

Post #44 of 78 (1325 views)
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Explained? No, I don't think so. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Was it ever explicitly stated why Thranduil appeared with an army on the heights above Dale and Erebor as the Dwarves were fleeing Smaug?

I thought that Thranduil was coming to lay siege to Erebor, in order to retrieve his wifeís white gems. I also thought, from Thorinís words to him, that Thranduil had refused to help the refugees. Hence the formerís extreme animosity towards all Elves, which admittedly was not entirely rational.

All of that is partly why I liked Tauriel and Kili, especially in AUJ. As I said before Ė two young people reaching past the bigotry and resentment of their elders to form a connection.


No, I don't think that any explanation was ever given for the presence of Thranduil's army when the Dwarves were fleeing from Smaug's attack. If he had come in support of the Longbeards, one would think he would have arrived long after the attack was over and the Mountain lay empty except for the dragon. Like you, I assume that Thranduil was there to demand the return of his jewels and that Smaug put a major kink into that plan. It might still be that the Elvenking considered coming to the aid of the Dwarves, but felt the risk to his people was too great.

#FidelityToTolkien


Omnigeek
Neirol


Feb 14, 5:13am

Post #45 of 78 (516 views)
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Movie Thorinís attitude toward Elrond was also non-canon [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To
IMO the movies needed to set up a reason for the animosity between the Wood Elves and the Dwarves of Erebor, not rely on ancient history known only to book fans.


That's a fair point, though Thorin's attitude was a bit extreme, extending to all Elves including Elrond's folk, who--when they lived in Eregion--had had a good relationship with the Dwarves of Khazad-dum (Thorin's ancestors).


Thorin in the book had none of the animosity toward Elrond (or even Elves in general) that movie Thorin displayed. Thorin was your basic proud old man/dwarf fallen on harder times than heíd like to admit. He took offense to Thranduilís questioning (and compounded that with innate dwarves greed). Movie Thorin hated Elves to the point of unreasoning racism.

Just one more reason my joy at the start of AUJ with the ďGood MorningĒ scene quickly turned to dismay and revulsion as the movies progressed.


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Feb 14, 1:49pm

Post #46 of 78 (488 views)
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That is so. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Thorin in the book had none of the animosity toward Elrond (or even Elves in general) that movie Thorin displayed. Thorin was your basic proud old man/dwarf fallen on harder times than heíd like to admit. He took offense to Thranduilís questioning (and compounded that with innate dwarves greed). Movie Thorin hated Elves to the point of unreasoning racism.

Just one more reason my joy at the start of AUJ with the ďGood MorningĒ scene quickly turned to dismay and revulsion as the movies progressed.


In the book, Thorin did display a bit of a typical dwarven attitude towards Elves ("Dwarves don't get on well with them. Even decent dwarves like Thorin and his friends think them foolish"), but it was far from a deep-rooted animosity. Even Thorin's attitude towards the Elvenking owed more to natural secretiveness, stubbornness and anger over being restrained and interrogated than any racial prejudice, though Tolkien does touch upon hostilities based on his legend of King Thingol and the Necklace of the Dwarves. As we know, the White Gems of Lasgalen and the fate of Thranduil's queen were inventions of the films, though based in part on the earlier legend.

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Feb 14, 1:50pm)


ange1e4e5
Rodnog

Feb 14, 4:08pm

Post #47 of 78 (477 views)
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I thought that Thorin's dislike of Elves was from a concrete reason in the films. [In reply to] Can't Post

In the first Hobbit film, Thranduil (atop his moose) and his forces show up, and Thorin shouts "Help us!" And Thranduil (to Thorin) seems content to watch the Dwarves flounder.


To quote Thorin in the Desolation of Smaug:


"I would not trust Thranduil, the great king, to honor his word, should the end of all days be upon us! You lack all honor! I have seen how you treat your friends. We came to you once - starving, homeless, seeking your aid. But you turned your back! You turned away from the suffering of my people, and the inferno that destroyed us, ihm rheid ahm rhad al sul!"


It's definitely a darker version of Theoden's "Where was Gondor?!" speech.

I always follow my job through.

(This post was edited by ange1e4e5 on Feb 14, 4:09pm)


Noria
Rodnog

Feb 14, 9:07pm

Post #48 of 78 (459 views)
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Yes [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree that Thorinís antipathy toward Elves in general was both excessive and non-canonical. As angele4e5 stated, it seems that his bitterness is supposed to stem from Thranduil turning away as Smaug attacked Erebor.

Obviously Thorinís attitude was meant to inject drama and tension into both the Rivendell scenes and the relationship between Thorin and Gandalf, where there is none in the book, and increase the friction between Thorin and Thranduil. In the context of the movies, I think it works for those purposes, though it also makes Thorin seem like more of a jerk.


I still drop by TORN mostly to keep an eye on what's happening with the new Amazon series but, when the main index shows activity in this or the LotR movie forums, I just have to take a look. LOL.


Hasuwandil
Llednevir


Feb 15, 8:16am

Post #49 of 78 (420 views)
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East of the Mering Stream [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
It's definitely a darker version of Theoden's "Where was Gondor?!" speech.


Which was itself another Jacksonian interpolation. Theoden knew very well that Gondor had plenty of problems of its own, and also that Rohan had not called for help. No doubt the purpose of the speech was to heighten the audience's anxiety when Aragorn reports to Theoden about the beacons being lit (as well as to contrast the two kings).

Hêlâ Auriwandil, angilô berhtost,
oƀar Middangard mannum gisandid!


Hasuwandil
Llednevir


Feb 15, 9:07am

Post #50 of 78 (409 views)
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5,254Ė5,256 [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Hêlâ Auriwandil, angilô berhtost,
oƀar Middangard mannum gisandid!


Hasuwandil
Llednevir


Feb 15, 9:40am

Post #51 of 78 (1713 views)
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5,254Ė5,256 [In reply to] Can't Post

I saw all three films in the theater, but haven't seen them since. I wouldn't rate them among the best films of the previous decade, but then I wouldn't rate them so low, either. I find it suspect that an attempt to judge over 5000 movies places all three Hobbit films in consecutive spots.

I did have a prejudice going into the theater: I was skeptical that The Hobbit could be turned into three films without adding unnecessary filler. I don't think I was proven wrong.

Things I liked:
  • Most of the beginning of An Unexpected Journey.
  • The music: much better than The Hobbit (1977), in my opinion.
  • It made sense to show the White Council expelling the Necromancer from Dol Guldur, given the length.
  • It made sense to include Legolas in the films, although I don't think he needed more than a cameo or two.
  • I liked the production design overall.
I was going to add that the fight scenes were more realistic than The Hobbit (1977), but then I remembered the Donkey Kong and Super Mario Bros. homages.

Things I didn't like:
  • The character designs of the thirteen Dwarves.
  • The pointless Frodo flash-forward.
  • The character design and characterization of Radagast.
  • The character designs of the prominent Orcs/Goblins.
  • The Elf-Dwarf love story.
  • The Alfred character.
  • Too much Legolas.
  • All in all, too many obvious references to LOTR.
I'm sure there's more I could add to both lists but, like I said, it's been a while since I saw the movies. Sometimes I wonder how things would have turned out if Peter Jackson had done The Hobbit first, and then gone on to do The Lord of the Rings. Presumably The Hobbit would have turned out better, but would The Lord of the Rings turned out worse?

Hêlâ Auriwandil, angilô berhtost,
oƀar Middangard mannum gisandid!


Noria
Rodnog

Feb 18, 2:44pm

Post #52 of 78 (1467 views)
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Interesting question [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Sometimes I wonder how things would have turned out if Peter Jackson had done The Hobbit first, and then gone on to do The Lord of the Rings. Presumably The Hobbit would have turned out better, but would The Lord of the Rings turned out worse?


I have always felt that a Peter Jackson Hobbit movie, one movie, that had been made before LotR could have been very different without the expectations and constraints that being both a prequel and a follow-up to the hugely successful LotR trilogy engendered. Yet Jackson is still the same director who likes special effects, big action and juvenile humour, who made both Braindead and Heavenly Creatures before LotR. So what would that original Hobbit movie have been like? I wonder too.

The effects on the LotR films would have been profound as well, probably not in a good way, had the original plan come to fruition. . LotR would have been two films instead of three and a lot more would have been condensed or left out, affecting both plot and character. No doubt many beloved scenes would never have been filmed. I have read about the two-film treatment but canít remember enough about it now to provide examples. Nor do I recall if a script for the Jackson/Walsh Hobbit had ever been written.

Since I love TH movies almost as much as the LotR trilogy, it all worked out for me.


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Feb 18, 2:59pm

Post #53 of 78 (1466 views)
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If Jackson had made 'The Hobbit' first. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I have always felt that a Peter Jackson Hobbit movie, one movie, that had been made before LotR could have been very different without the expectations and constraints that being both a prequel and a follow-up to the hugely successful LotR trilogy engendered. Yet Jackson is still the same director who likes special effects, big action and juvenile humour, who made both Braindead and Heavenly Creatures before LotR. So what would that original Hobbit movie have been like? I wonder too.

The effects on the LotR films would have been profound as well, probably not in a good way, had the original plan come to fruition. . LotR would have been two films instead of three and a lot more would have been condensed or left out, affecting both plot and character. No doubt many beloved scenes would never have been filmed. I have read about the two-film treatment but canít remember enough about it now to provide examples. Nor do I recall if a script for the Jackson/Walsh Hobbit had ever been written.

Since I love TH movies almost as much as the LotR trilogy, it all worked out for me.


Of course, Peter Jackson had proposed adapting The Hobbit before the Lord of the Rings films were made. It likely would have been a single film, maybe two. Elements from the appendices might have been included, but probably no Tauriel and no Alfrid, no Were-worms.

I am not prepared to say that the LotR movies would not have been a trilogy in this case (if they were made at all). There are too many variables, too many unknowns.

#FidelityToTolkien


Noria
Rodnog

Feb 19, 3:18am

Post #54 of 78 (1426 views)
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One Hobbit, two LotR [In reply to] Can't Post

As I recall, Jackson and Walsh went to Miramax with a proposal to make three films: one Hobbit and two LotR. The rights to film TH were too hard to acquire so that movie was eliminated, But there were still supposed to be two LotR films and I think the scripts were written and pre-production had started. Then it all famously fell apart when the Weinsteins insisted on a single LotR movie.

So the two-movie LotR project was well underway before it died. The subsequent three movie deal with New Line necessitated a complete rewrite, so we don't know what the original concept would have been like unless somebody has read that treatment.

Thus it seems to me that both TH and LotR would have been very different if the original plan had worked out. By the time LotR became three movies, The Hobbit film had been abandoned.

It's funny that the difficulties in getting the rights to film The Hobbit were suddenly worth working through post-LotR, once they all knew how much money there was to be made.


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Feb 19, 3:42am

Post #55 of 78 (1423 views)
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That seems accurate. [In reply to] Can't Post

Your post lines up with my distant memories concerning the abandoned project. If there are any corrections to be made, I'm sure someone will chime in with the information. If the Hobbit movie had been made under Miramax, though, and been successful, I could see the idea of the LotR as a film trilogy being revisited at that time. As was said later, by a New Line exec: There are three books, aren't there?

#FidelityToTolkien


Noria
Rodnog

Feb 19, 1:50pm

Post #56 of 78 (1383 views)
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Of course it's possible [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Your post lines up with my distant memories concerning the abandoned project. If there are any corrections to be made, I'm sure someone will chime in with the information. If the Hobbit movie had been made under Miramax, though, and been successful, I could see the idea of the LotR as a film trilogy being revisited at that time. As was said later, by a New Line exec: There are three books, aren't there?


But in my opinion three films from Miramax were unlikely given that that Weinsteins were balking at (and maybe couldn't afford) two, unless the single Hobbit film made a fortune. I hope that Hobbit movie would have been successful but I can't think that it would have had the impact that the epic LotR had, like three cannon shots across the world of film, three years in a row.

But we'll never know, though it's entertaining to speculate.


Otaku-sempai
Latrommi


Feb 19, 2:31pm

Post #57 of 78 (1386 views)
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Yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

...but we are, after all, playing a game of 'what if'. Alternately, we could ask: What if New Line had agreed to Peter Jackson directing an adaptation of The Hobbit before making The Lord of the Rings? Again, I think we would most likely have seen a single movie made of TH, without most of the embellishments that we actually got. It could have been expanded into two films, especially if additional material from the LotR appendices were incorporated into the narrative. Again, I could see Legolas being included, but likely in a much smaller role--perhaps little more than a cameo. We might have even seen Aragorn in such a movie, but as the young boy 'Estel' in Rivendell as opposed to the reference to a Ranger as mentioned by the Elvenking.

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Feb 19, 2:35pm)


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Feb 20, 3:12pm

Post #58 of 78 (1304 views)
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Yeah... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To

In Reply To
IMO the movies needed to set up a reason for the animosity between the Wood Elves and the Dwarves of Erebor, not rely on ancient history known only to book fans.


That's a fair point, though Thorin's attitude was a bit extreme, extending to all Elves including Elrond's folk, who--when they lived in Eregion--had had a good relationship with the Dwarves of Khazad-dum (Thorin's ancestors).


Thorin in the book had none of the animosity toward Elrond (or even Elves in general) that movie Thorin displayed. Thorin was your basic proud old man/dwarf fallen on harder times than heíd like to admit. He took offense to Thranduilís questioning (and compounded that with innate dwarves greed). Movie Thorin hated Elves to the point of unreasoning racism.

Just one more reason my joy at the start of AUJ with the ďGood MorningĒ scene quickly turned to dismay and revulsion as the movies progressed.


Even as a Jackson ''apologist'' (for a lack of a better term), I don't get why he made certain choices in the scripting processes. Why alter Thorin's personality in such an extreme way?

Does he give any reason anywhere (say, the EE's Appendices)?

It just seems STUPID to change the book gratuitously like that. If the change has a cinematic/narrative purpose, then maybe it can be excused. But for NO REASON?


(This post was edited by Paulo Gabriel on Feb 20, 3:26pm)


Noria
Rodnog

Feb 20, 8:18pm

Post #59 of 78 (1277 views)
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Otaku-sempai, I pretty much agree with you. [In reply to] Can't Post

I discounted the feasibility of New Line making The Hobbit back then because presumably they would have had the same problems in obtaining the film rights. But if we are imaginingÖÖ.

Whether it was one or two movies, I think that The Hobbit could only be completely faithful to the book if it stood alone, unconnected to any LotR films. Otherwise, there would be a need for continuity between the two stories; the world of the Hobbit would have to be the same world as the larger, more expansive LotR.

Since Jackson et al were planning to film LotR as well as The Hobbit, presumably they would have had the larger, more complex book in mind as they wrote their treatment of TH and it would have been a big influence on TH.

As part of a trilogy (or even a tetralogy if weíre dreaming big) with LotR, it would only make sense to bring in the White Council, Galadriel, Saruman etc. into TH and have the whole Necromancer subplot. The Ring would be more significant.

Since Legolas is important in LotR, he should appear in TH when the Company visits his home. But maybe Legolasí role would have been smaller because neither he nor Bloom were fan favourites later used to attract existing LotR movie fans to the prequel movies.

In the same vein, the Dwarves of The Hobbit novel are not those of LotR, either book or movies, and I suspect that the Dwarves of any Hobbit adaptation would have to be closer to Gimli in character than to his relatives in the TH book. Until they suddenly changed into warriors at the Lonely Mountain, the Dwarves of The Hobbit were helpless and cowardly; the Dwarves of LotR were neither. I wonder if back then Jackson would have had the IMO very clever idea of making all the Dwarves visually distinctive but featuring only a few of them as main characters.

I expect that they still might have introduced at least one female character.

Also in order to better match up with LotR, some of the characters would have to be more developed, be more than a name and/or title and a couples of line like Bard the Bowman or the King of the Elves or the Master of Laketown.

There is still the issue of what Thorin and company thought they were doing on this quest anyway.

I have no issues with the book as it is and I imagine that a faithful adaptation of the little childrenís story could be made. But if The Hobbit was being filmed as part of a series with LotR, it would have to be looked at differently and I imagine that any director would at least consider the things mentioned above.

And all that is before we consider the characteristics of Jackson himself as a director.


Noria
Rodnog

Feb 20, 9:14pm

Post #60 of 78 (1274 views)
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I don't think it was for "no reason". [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Even as a Jackson ''apologist'' (for a lack of a better term), I don't get why he made certain choices in the scripting processes. Why alter Thorin's personality in such an extreme way?

Does he give any reason anywhere (say, the EE's Appendices)?

It just seems STUPID to change the book gratuitously like that. If the change has a cinematic/narrative purpose, then maybe it can be excused. But for NO REASON?


I think it was done to up the dramatic tension and make it much less likely that Thranduil and Thorin could ever cooperate either in the Woodland Realm or at Erebor. It increased the likelihood of war between Elves and Dwarves. The animosity of the two kings was personal.

Whether that reason was good or not is a matter of opinion.


Omnigeek
Neirol


Feb 23, 3:34am

Post #61 of 78 (1099 views)
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Reasons, yes [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree, they had reasons for what they did. I just happen to think a lot of the scripting decisions for the Hobbit trilogy -- especially Thorin's general attitude toward Elves -- were ridiculous and stupid. I understood most of the decisions for deviating from the books in the LOTR movies but there really was no need for the "White Orc" or love triangle much less the changes in Thorin's personality or background.
They could have covered the differences in mood between the Hobbit and LOTR books simply by doing what Tolkien did and explain the text of The Hobbit (or start the tone more like the book) as Bilbo's contemporaneous view of events -- or what he was willing to admit to -- and then show the LOTR backstory from the Appendices by having Gandalf fill in the rest of the story.
In any event, the movies are what they are. I do still love how they did the Good Morning scene, enjoyed Riddles in the Dark, and appreciated Elrond's invitation to Bilbo. I laughed at Dain's arrival and the insults he hurled at Thranduil. Thorin's funeral was magnificent (although I still maintain he should have had a full beard worthy of a Longbeard).


Noria
Rodnog

Feb 25, 2:13pm

Post #62 of 78 (995 views)
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Fair enough. [In reply to] Can't Post

You didnít like many of the choices the writers and director made in filming The Hobbit, and though I donít agree, itís a legitimate point of view.

I had forgotten about Tolkien's notion of presenting The Hobbit as Bilboís subjective recollections rather than historical ďrealityĒ. Would it have worked, either as the first film of a trilogy with LOtR as originally planned or as the prequel-sequel that actually happened? Possibly, and I get why such an approach would have been more to the liking of purists.

Would the slaying of Smaug and other things that Bilbo didnít witness would have to be described to him, just like the BoFA was in the book? I liked how the BoFA was shown in real time instead of as a flashback. Although I didnít care much for the denouement of the White Council subplot in TBOFTA, I again preferred that it was shown in real time rather than have Gandalf describe it. And that story needed to be in TH, not LotR. Placing it in the latter as a flashback would entail even more exposition of long ago events in movies that were already struggling with an overabundance of source material. LotR had more story than could be told as it was, and more than enough flashbacks. The Hobbit is a much thinner story which has more room for events that happened within its time frame and involved one of its major characters.

If anything, before I saw AUJ I was hoping The Hobbit movies would be more like LotR. PJ explicitly stated that he wanted LotR to feel real, like history rather than fantasy. I loved that about those movies and it was what I wanted for TH - a more adult version, like the rewrite that Tolkien started and then abandoned. Once I saw AUJ, I realized that PJ was going in a different direction tonally and was fine with it.


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Mar 1, 11:36pm

Post #63 of 78 (893 views)
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Just a minor point... [In reply to] Can't Post

but I think Azog is never actually reffered in the movies as ''the WHITE Orc'', but rather as the ''the PALE orc in a white Warg'', or something to that effect. Just a correction. Wink


(This post was edited by Paulo Gabriel on Mar 1, 11:38pm)


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Mar 1, 11:48pm

Post #64 of 78 (888 views)
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Question. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Once I saw AUJ, I realized that PJ was going in a different direction tonally and was fine with it.


But that ''different tonal direction'' matched your vision/expectation of what those movies should be like?


Noria
Rodnog

Mar 2, 2:01pm

Post #65 of 78 (823 views)
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To clarify [In reply to] Can't Post

I love The Hobbit book, but not nearly as much as I love LotR (or The Silmarillion). I also love the LotR movies and what I had hoped for from TH movies was more of the same Ė a Middle-earth that was treated as if it was real and an epic story full of gravitas leavened by occasional humour. I suspect that many LotR movie fans felt the same, especially if they had never read any of the books. But I was wrong.

Once I saw AUJ I realized that the LotR treatment was not necessarily the best one for TH, though it might have worked for the epic story it became. But I remember PJ saying that he didnít want to repeat himself with TH and I imagine that was part of why he chose a very different tone for those movies. What he attempted to do was bring the lightness, absurdity, and sheer fun of TH into the wider and deeper Middle-earth of LotR. The marriage is somewhat uneasy at times and I understand why some Hobbit book lovers detest the result. I am fine with TH movies as they are.

I might have loved that LotR-like Hobbit as much as I do the version that we got, but Iíll never know. As with LotR, I donít think the Hobbit movies are perfect and I disagree with some of the choices PJ made. None-the-less, I love all six movies.


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Mar 6, 6:06pm

Post #66 of 78 (715 views)
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OK... [In reply to] Can't Post

That certainly did clarify things. Wink


Solicitr
Rodnog


Mar 6, 6:40pm

Post #67 of 78 (712 views)
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Except [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
What he attempted to do was bring the lightness, absurdity, and sheer fun of TH into the wider and deeper Middle-earth of LotR


he didn't; if that was his intent, he failed. The lightness and humor of Tolkien's Hobbit were dry, droll and donnish. What PJ gave us instead was Looney Tunes slapstick.


Noria
Rodnog

Mar 11, 2:20pm

Post #68 of 78 (537 views)
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In your opinion [In reply to] Can't Post

But really Ėthe foolish and fainting Bilbo, the yammering Dwarves, the Trolls and their talking purse, the singing orcs and the talking spiders may be droll but are hardly intellectual. Dry and donnish humour is not the only kind in the book. It wouldn't appeal to kids if that was the case.

But regardless, PJís task was to make a set of movies that would attract a large and wide ranging international audience of the 21st century, not a subset of people harkening back to the 1930ís.


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Mar 11, 6:22pm

Post #69 of 78 (525 views)
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I agree completely. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
But regardless, PJís task was to make a set of movies that would attract a large and wide ranging international audience of the 21st century, not a subset of people harkening back to the 1930ís.



Solicitr
Rodnog


Mar 11, 11:45pm

Post #70 of 78 (512 views)
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I believe [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
PJís task was to make a set of movies that would attract a large and wide ranging international audience of the 21st century, not a subset of people harkening back to the 1930ís.


That is summarized by a common ten-letter phrase beginning with SEL and ending in OUT.


Noria
Rodnog

Mar 13, 8:41pm

Post #71 of 78 (377 views)
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No itís reality [In reply to] Can't Post

Itís the movie-making business. Itís only a sellout if the director makes a movie they donít want to make. There is no evidence of that with The Hobbit. If you watch the video logs and Appendices and listen to the commentaries, PJ appears to be right into it all. It was his idea to make two movies into three, because for him TH novel seems to have become a springboard into a larger story set in a wider and more complex Middle-earth.

Whatever their artistic aspirations, the producers and director of a movie have an obligation to those investing in their project to do their best to create something that will make money. In the case of inevitably expensive movies like LotR and TH, that means attracting and appealing to a large audience by making movie(s) that that large audience would enjoy watching. Like TH trilogy. Something that is popular is not always bad any more than it is necessarily good.

After all, Tolkien himself sold the film rights to TH and LotR for money, and the Tolkien Estate recently sold the television rights to LotR for money.


Paulo Gabriel
Neirol

Mar 14, 7:08pm

Post #72 of 78 (282 views)
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Yes. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Itís the movie-making business.


Under contemporary Hollywood constraints, both LOTR and Hobbit trilogies are as good as one could expect-- perhaps not just perfect, but then, perfection is utopia.


Solicitr
Rodnog


Mar 14, 8:06pm

Post #73 of 78 (274 views)
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Tolkien [In reply to] Can't Post

pere sold them with the Inland Revenue's gun to his head, confronted with a tax bill he had not the cash to pay; the Estate, yes, Sold Out with a capital S O once the inconveniently honorable Christopher with his oh-so-out-of-date sense of integrity had retired (or was defenestrated.)


VoronwŽ_the_Faithful
Ronilav

Mar 15, 12:12am

Post #74 of 78 (245 views)
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I'm surprised to see you say that [In reply to] Can't Post

My understanding is that the oft-repeated statement that Tolkien sold the film rights to pay an overdue tax bill was not at all true. But you certainly are in a better position to know that I am, so perhaps it is true after all.

'But very bright were the stars upon the margin of the world, when at times the clouds about the West were drawn aside.'

The Hall of Fire


Noria
Rodnog

Mar 15, 1:47pm

Post #75 of 78 (186 views)
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Disagree [In reply to] Can't Post

I had heard the story about the tax bill before and also that it was untrue. Iíll take your word for it. If it was income from book sales that caused the tax problem, itís kind of fitting that selling the film rights should remedy it. In any event, it was fortunate for Tolkien that he had something to sell.

There is nothing inherently dishonourable about a business deal between the Estate and Amazon Studios. Granted, I wouldnít have thought that the Estate needed the money Ė no doubt it was one of those dreaded ďbusiness decisionsĒ. But the rights are the Estateís to sell. And itís Amazonís right to make a television series that they believe will appeal to their audience, subject to whatever oversight the terms of the deal stipulate.

Iím sorry to hear the suggestion that Christopher Tolkien was removed from the board of directors of the Estate against his will. I had assumed it was the result of age-related physical or cognitive issues.


Solicitr
Rodnog


Mar 15, 3:28pm

Post #76 of 78 (327 views)
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Just to clarify [In reply to] Can't Post

I have NO 'inside information' regarding the events of summer 2018 relating to the Tolkien Estate. All I know is what I read in the papers, just like everybody else.

But given the coincidence in time of Christopher's retirement and the Amazon deal, I think the two must be causally linked, in one of the following ways:

1) Christopher retired due to age, and with that roadblock gone the rest of the Board took the money and ran; or
1a) Christopher retired, and with that roadblock gone the lurking Amazon pounced; or

2) The majority of the Board couldn't resist the temptation of a quarter-billion dollars and so outvoted Christopher, who resigned in protest; or

3) With the GDP of a small country on the table, the rest of the Board forced the recalcitrant Christopher out so they could take the money.

Although, again, I don't have actual knowledge, nonetheless I would be utterly astounded if the case was

4) Christopher himself sold out


VoronwŽ_the_Faithful
Ronilav

Mar 15, 6:17pm

Post #77 of 78 (309 views)
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Definitely not No. 4 [In reply to] Can't Post

I would guess that it is some shading between 1 and 2. I'm doubtful that it is fully No. 3, though perhaps that is my idealistic side showing through.

'But very bright were the stars upon the margin of the world, when at times the clouds about the West were drawn aside.'

The Hall of Fire


Noria
Rodnog

Mar 15, 8:07pm

Post #78 of 78 (297 views)
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This, hopefully [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I would guess that it is some shading between 1 and 2. I'm doubtful that it is fully No. 3, though perhaps that is my idealistic side showing through.


As for 1a), Amazon could lurk all it liked but it could hardly pounce, since the Estate could not have been forced to agree to the transaction.

 
 

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