Feb 8 2013, 9:15am
Drat, I knew there was something else I was supposed to look for. Forgot. Where do you see it best? If it's at Azanulbizar, forget it. I can't take my eyes off Thorin.
I managed to get to #14 today, which alas, really is likely to be my last. It's down to one showing a day at just a single theater here -- but this showing was reasonably well-attended today, for a mid-day showing, and it's on what is probably the best screen in our whole city, which is the first time I've seen it there: the XTreme Screen! 3D HFR, huge screen, amazing sound: I *felt* the stone giants battling, I *felt* the Ring fall to the rocks, I *felt* Gandalf lay the goblins (and dwarves) flat with his wizardly blast...you get the idea. That was probably the best I've seen (and heard) the movie so far, so I guess it's a good viewing to end on.
--And despite the general blur, I suddenly developed "Kazinsky-vision" and began seeing him playing Fili everywhere. And other times, if it wasn't him, I thought it must be a filler-Fili standing in until they got Dean to the set. It got to the point that any time the dwarves were in a group, I was actively seeking out Fili. I probably missed a good third of the film because of this. I started noticing this a lot at my last viewing, and looked into it a bit more today. With just maybe two exceptions, if there's a scene where Fili doesn't have lines, you either don't see him at all, or you don't see his face: there are strategically placed weapons, other actors' heads, he has his back to us, or his head is turned just enough away. Like the troll scene where they're all in sacks: Fili's the only one laying face down; we see a bit of the back of his head as he's basically eating dirt, and then we mostly just see the tail-end of his sack. We do see his face, without him having lines, outside the troll cave, and on the Carrock. I think that's it! I sure hope we see more of him -- face included, even when in the background -- in the next two movies. Okay, I noticed a few other things today too! You'd think there wouldn't be anything left to notice at this point. Either that or I'm woefully unobservant. Or maybe my observing skills are tuned in to other things...*ahem* Anyways, at Azanulbizar, after the battle we see Balin kneeling or crouching, and weeping. I finally realized it looks like he's holding the hand of a barely-moving, and then not-moving, dwarf. So it appears he's comforting someone he knows, as that dwarf dies. Dwalin comes up right then and I imagine he's crying over the same dwarf too. Very touching. Their father dies in this battle, as does Thorin's brother. I suspect the anguish we see in those two here is nothing compared to the heartbreak we'll see at the end of BO5A. By the time Dwalin's done devouring Bilbo's supper, he has spilled all over the table what looks like a bowl of rice krispies. Or little maggots. Can't tell, but it's a mess. Myrtle, Minty, Bungo, and Daisy (did I get their names right?) must be the cleverest ponies ever. Not only can they untie themselves and remove their own halters, but they can put the halters back on again and tie themselves back up too! Myrtle and Minty are deposited by one of the trolls (which one is that? I still can't keep them straight) into the little corral -- there is nothing on their heads, no halter, no nothing. Shortly thereafter, they and the other two are standing in a line, tied via lead ropes and halters to the top rail. Then they're untied and halterless, milling about. Then tied up again. Then free...etc. I'm glad our pony hasn't learned that trick yet! Also, the troll fighting actually follows more of a narrative sequence than I've given it credit for, though I won't be able to exactly recount that now since I haven't taken notes. But part of it goes like this, if I remember right (and I could well be off): Nori does something to a troll that gets himself scooped up. Ori hits that troll in the eye with his slingshot, which works: the troll drops Nori. But Ori gets scooped up instead; Dwalin does his sliding, here-Thorin-use-my-back-for-a-springboard move; Thorin leaps off Dwalin's back and up at the face of the troll with Ori, who then drops Ori as Thorin leaps back down; Thorin only has time for another slash or two before Bilbo's scooped up and the battle's over. Anyways, good luck with trying to follow all that in real-time. We need slow-mo!
--I also kept an eye out for the evolution of Thorin's beard. He started out at Erebor with a longish beard with a clip, but then I saw that by the time he got to the "never forgave/forgot" scene it was short (I think I missed this previously because I kept thinking that he might take off his shirt). So it was short before Thror/Thrain go to the dwarf kingdom in the sky (or dungeon, as the case may be). I had gotten the impression he tore it out/hacked it off because of their loss, but was there some other precipitating event before that? I thought maybe it was because Thror and Thrain had theirs singed or burned off in Erebor, but at Azanulbizar Thror seemed fully bearded. Since this kept me thinking up until I became preoccupied with Fili, I probably missed 10% of the film due to this silliness.
LOL! Isn't it going to be nice to have the pause and rewind buttons? I meant to pay attention to beard length too, but after Smaug's done toasting dwarves, I've completely forgotten that there's any particular thing I'm supposed to be looking for in Thorin and am just holding my breath for the shake-fist-at-the-mountain pose and the not-quite-shirtless smiting-the-anvil scene.