The world that Bilbo steps out into is for want of a better word wonderous. The myth making, whilst handled lightly by comparison to his other works, is at the centre of my literary interest.
However I am 57 I have a lifetime of experiences and art needs to be three dimensional to me. This weekend I have watched two beautiful small movies "A Simple Life" and Searching For Sugarman". The sense of person is utterly palpable and the result heart warming I have learnt some thing more about the human spirit.
I have also put Unfinished Tales on my KOBO (books in storage) and read the Quest for Erebor written in the same style as the lotr BUT about the matter of the Hobbit. It is exquisite far above the banal ,cliched ,hackneyed and repetitive interactions between Bilbo and Thorin up until Bilbo walks down the tunnel (which is as far as my re rereading has reached).
The over arching vision is not trite its glorious, the subcreation of the Hobbit is quite wonderful arguably the best invention by a fantasy writer ever. However the portrayal of the Dwarves and their interactions with Bilbo is trite because it is repetitive one dimensional and cliched - as you might expect if you were writing for your 7 year old children.
What I will never get is how intelligent articulate people on this board do not recognise that. So far in AUJ the Thorin Bilbo relationship has been transformed into some thing real you get a real relationship within fantasy which makes it grounded in an emotional reality. The exchange at the end is operatic and staged but it is built on a real interaction between them which had been laid down over the previous 155 minutes. I cry at the end of operas with their formuliac endings (the heroine always dies!!), I cried at the end of AUJ.
I do not expect the Thorin/Bilbo relationship to carry on now in the same way as the book. It will ebb and flow but we won't get those trite thankyou's from Thorin every time Bilbo gets them out of a fix. Indeed I think the screen play will avoid Bilbo super Hobbit constantly rescuing them it will be more mixed up, we shall see.
As to the other Dwarves some are wise and benign, some are loyal and caring, some are cranky, some are over weight some are effete indeed they are like a cross section of us. Some we like, some we think are dorks. In the book they barely exist beyond their collective sense of grumpyness.
I have deliberately responded to your good self. As I have said before I admire your love of Tolkien and the films but like me you see flaws in all of the latter rather than feel the need to offer an unwavering blizzard of criticism or cynical put downs week after week.
As for me "For about the time of year when the leaves have turned to gold and fallen and snow is on the ground, look for me in the threads of one ring.net"
Indeed, there is a GREAT wonder and power to be found in simple folktales, which the Hobbit is fashioned as. Not all things need be lofty and full of high elegance to be worthy, as much as I love the lofty and elegant themes, events and figures of Rings and The Silmarillion. They are wondrous for what they are. The Hobbit novel is, in a different way, also wonderful for what it is.