Apr 25 2014, 5:39pm
As far as I'm concerned, it is not that I wanted an utterly faithful adaptation of the book, because that wouldn't interest me very much, given that the book was written for children. There were many deviations from the books in LotR, too, and the characters (apart from Gandalf and younger Bilbo) were completely unlike I had imagined them. However, LotR captured the spirit of the professor's work: for example, it had emotional moments a-plenty (even though it also had some ham acting!), some wonderful outdoor scenes and music that blended seamlessly with the films.
As a 'good adaptation', I would have liked to see (in The Hobbit) something that reflected the spirit and heart of Tolkien's work. While AUJ did this to a certain extent, DoS strayed widely of the mark – there was nothing moving about it at all. As I have mentioned before, the visuals, apart from the ninja-elf action and the appearance of one character, were spectacular, but the story was too broken up and fast, relying on too much action, and there was not enough of the key canon characters (Bilbo,Thorin, Gandalf, Beorn, Thranduil, etc.). (IMHO, of course) Given this, I do not feel DoS was 'a good adaptation'.
Until PJ came along we didn't have a film adaptation of LOTR, and he succeeded enough, both as film and as adaptation to satisfy most people - and was given extra leeway, because LOTR was considered by many to be un-filmable. The Hobbit isn't un-filmable - it's comparatively straightforward in plot and scope, and the technology is now well established, partly thanks to PJ, WETA et al. So, without that extra leeway, people are wanting the first attempt at a Hobbit film to be a good adaptation of the book. Also, the rights aren't available for anyone else to have a go at a more faithful rendering, so, for many people, this one is all we're going to get.