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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Altaira: hijacking this to start the 6th review thread to rule them all (links to others inside). Please post reviews here!:
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Orc13
Bree

Dec 9 2012, 8:46pm

Post #1 of 30 (2111 views)
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Altaira: hijacking this to start the 6th review thread to rule them all (links to others inside). Please post reviews here!: Can't Post

Original post by Orc13:

comicbookmovie josh wilding review of the hobbit and he like the movie

http://www.comicbookmovie.com/fansites/JoshWildingNewsAndReviews/news/?a=71083

He gave the movie 5 stars

*****************
Links to older review threads:

Thread 1

Thread 2

Thread 3

Thread 4


Thread 5


(This post was edited by Altaira on Dec 9 2012, 9:11pm)


sauget.diblosio
Tol Eressea

Dec 9 2012, 8:52pm

Post #2 of 30 (903 views)
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I think this already appeared in the reviews thread... [In reply to] Can't Post

or maybe the British premiere thread.


Balrogslunch
The Shire

Dec 9 2012, 9:23pm

Post #3 of 30 (908 views)
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a good review from digitalspy (uk website) [In reply to] Can't Post

http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/...-journey-review.html

a review from someone that seems to know the book! ....has positives and negatives....but an interesting read BUT SPOILERS so beware ...if u dont want to read 4 out of 5 stars!


morgul lord
Rivendell


Dec 9 2012, 9:28pm

Post #4 of 30 (872 views)
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74% on RT [In reply to] Can't Post

After briefly reaching 75% last night.

I'm hoping it doesn't drop out of the 70s.


Lacrimae Rerum
Grey Havens

Dec 9 2012, 9:36pm

Post #5 of 30 (888 views)
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Well at this point it could end up anywhere between [In reply to] Can't Post

9% and 97% so knows


LR


Maiarmike
Grey Havens


Dec 9 2012, 9:37pm

Post #6 of 30 (864 views)
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I'm hoping it steadily moves up when we get into the hundreds of reviews tallied... [In reply to] Can't Post

...at least end up where Avatar is, 80-84%.

"I warn you, if you bore me, I shall take my revenge"
--J.R.R. Tolkien


Sunflower
Valinor

Dec 9 2012, 10:37pm

Post #7 of 30 (831 views)
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Just to let people know... [In reply to] Can't Post

I have not dropped off the face of the earth. Just that I made a vow to watch TH completely spoiler-free, and "to that I hold." Cool So I have been avoiding TORn. Of course, following the Oscar race as I am (watching the progress for Les Miz and Lincoln... this weekend the first major Oscar precursors are being voted on--the major Critcs Societes awards, and the SAG Guild by Wednesday) I can't escape mentions of TH completely. From what I gather on other sites, the reviews are mixed so far, due to pacing and 48fps issues. The 48fps controversy is to be expected, but I would rather not have the bloody details. My 2nd viewing is going to be in the HFR. I haven't heard the music either, save Song of TLM. So I don't regret missing out on the current hullabaloo. (I'm going to tell my Line Party mates not to spoil me with any kind of reviews either!)

But suffice it to say that around Sat night the 15th or so, I'll be writing reams and reams, in true Sunflower style...y'all might want me to disappear againEvil

So have fun being spoiled kiddies....

PS. I have to mention, that from what I've been reading on the Film sites, that it's safe to say that TH is NOT going to be nominated for any major Oscars. Just, if it's lucky, a couple of the technicals. But it's a great year for films, the Oscar race this year is going to be INTENSE....currently there seems to be a 3-way tie for Best Picture (Zero Dark Thirty, Lincoln, Les Miz, with either Argo or The Master paused to upset if any of those films cancel each other out in voting, The actors contests are hotly contested too, with as yet no real front runners, just Daniel-Day Lewis for Lincoln. The Oscar contest is going to be crazy and suspenseful this year, perhaps the most suspenseful we've seen in a long time. This before the Guild nom and the Globe noms. I hope everyone going to The Torn Oscar party hs a wonderful time though--there's next year where all the problems of TH get ironed out!

And I couldnt help seeing--an EE for TH?? HOW??!?!? When it seems to already be too long???

LATER--after I see the film!

Namarie!


(This post was edited by Sunflower on Dec 9 2012, 10:45pm)


Maiarmike
Grey Havens


Dec 9 2012, 10:43pm

Post #8 of 30 (735 views)
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I have a feeling Zero Dark Thirty will take Best Director and Picture. DDL will take his 3rd Best Actor statue. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

"I warn you, if you bore me, I shall take my revenge"
--J.R.R. Tolkien


Altaira
Superuser / Moderator


Dec 10 2012, 4:17am

Post #9 of 30 (642 views)
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From the Home Page: TORn staffer greendragon's review [In reply to] Can't Post

For most folks, this is it: this is the week when we finally get to go back to Middle-earth, and experience Peter Jackson's first Hobbit movie, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Some of us, however, have had the great good fortune of seeing the film already, at press events around the globe. I was one such lucky viewer - and I present here my more-or-less spoiler-free review of what I saw.

Walking through the morning commuting crowds, heading to the cinema, it was slightly bewildering to think that I was finally going to see this movie. It's been YEARS - hoping since The Return of the King that we would get to go "back again"; handing out "Make the Hobbit Happen!" buttons at conventions; watching the 'snakes and ladders' game of waiting for that greenlight; eagerly taking in every moment of Peter Jackson's production diaries.. And now, at last, here it is. Would the anticipation prove too much? Would I be disappointed?

As the opening credits came up, I knew immediately that the answer, whatever was in store, would be NO. I was revisiting old friends - and what a great pleasure it was. I wanted to cry, as Frodo does in The Fellowship of the Ring, "It's wonderful to see you Gandafl" What a treat to be back in the Shire, and to delight again in its green beauty. What fun to explore Bag End some more, and to see Ian Holm and Elijah Wood back where they belong - in furry feet!

Some reviews have commented that The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey feels too much like an echo of the earlier trilogy - too many parallels, which perhaps feel contrived. Those perils certainly exist, when revisiting a franchise: remember the James Bond team desperately trying to smooth over the replacement of Sean Connery with George Lazenby, by throwing in lines such as, "This never happened to the other guy!" Fortunately, Jackson et al have dodged such pitfalls. They make no apologies, simply plunging in and enjoying being back. The fact is, we ARE back in Middle-earth - back in Peter Jackson, Alan Lee, John Howe and Weta's Middle-earth - and it SHOULD seem familiar! These are many of the same characters, the same locations; should we expect them to be somehow different? In a recent interview, Richard Armitage commented that connecting blood vessels to those other films [The Lord of the Rings trilogy] was giving oxygen to our film'; Middle-earth breathes again because it is linked to the movies we already know - and that is an encouraging thought.

This first of The Hobbit films does have a somewhat lighter touch than The Lord of the Rings movies, in keeping with the difference in Tolkien's own style, going from The Hobbit to the later trilogy. An Unexpected Journey feels, in places, closer to a Jim Henson movie or a Goonies style kids adventure tale; and this unfamiliar flippancy was sometimes disorienting. It seems likely, however, with the way that plot events unfold, that The Desolation of Smaug and There and Back Again will be much darker - so perhaps it is as well to find the humour and the levity where we can! We see the characters having fun, enjoying each other and developing a rich camaraderie - which will make the dangers and darkness to come all the more poignant and frightening.

The occasional frivolity of this movie is counterbalanced by the anchoring performances of its core trio - Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage and Sir Ian McKellen. These three actors are exceptional, and the intensity and focus which they bring to their roles gives the film an essential weight and gravity. Martin Freeman never puts a (rather fat and chunky!) foot wrong in his portrayal of Bilbo - every moment, whether it be a scene of comedy, of danger or of emotion, is perfectly played. Richard Armitage gives Thorin extraordinary depth - this is a truly heroic character in whom we can believe as a leader and a potential king, but who is also a haunted, vulnerable being who carries heavy burdens of sadness and self-doubt. And McKellen is, of course, everything we want from Gandalf - funny, touching, wise: a formidable presence. How we will watch this triumvirate journey together, and see their characters' relationships grow and change, is a thrilling prospect for the next two movies. The Academy is often churlish in rewarding "fantasy" acting roles, but if there isn't oscar buzz for these three gents - well, there should be.

Not that the supporting cast is overshadowed! One of the great joys of An Unexpected Journey is that it is so well cast; everyone plays his or her role to perfection. Each dwarf is a delight - from William Kircher as the silent Bifur, who manages to communicate so much with his eyes and his grunts, to Adam Brown's adorable Ori and James Nesbitt's sparkling Bofur - and all the others in between. Ken Stott is particularly wonderful as Balin; as a long time fan of the Scottish actor, I was thrilled to see him bring such resonance to the role of Thorin's old companion.

As one would expect, Hugo Weaving, Cate Blanchett and Sir Christopher Lee recreate their particular roles with skill and mastery. The White Council scenes are beautifully played, and Gandalf's interactions with Galadriel are a joy to behold. The only slight disappointment is that Saruman here is a difficult, ornery fellow, ever at odds with Gandalf. It seems a missed opportunity - to have discovered a real friendship here between the two wizards could have been a powerful and poignant set up for the destruction of that friendship in The Lord of the Rings.

It would be remiss to leave out Andy Serkis in this roll call of excellence; his Gollum is better than ever - if that is possible - and the Riddles in the Dark sequence is a highlight of the film.

The perfection of the players in the movie is of course, in large part, a credit to their director. Sir Peter Jackson is known for being a technical wizard, but there is perhaps a tendency to overlook his further brilliance as an actor's director. No film would be so full of pitch perfect performances were it not helmed by a master, who knows exactly how to draw such work out of his cast; how to lead them where they need to go and create for them a world in which they flourish. Directors don't always get the credit they deserve for enabling their actors - Sir Peter certainly deserves much applause for what he has achieved here.

So, what didn't I love? Well, I've never been a huge fan of snot gags, but those slapstick moments in which Jackson loves to indulge are all part of the energy of the film, so they didn't spoil my enjoyment. My only real issue was with the Higher Frame Rate - and even that was not quite the issue which others have found it to be.

Much has been written about 48 frames per second, with some even stating that the visuals at this frame rate made them nauseous. I had no such problems, but I wasn't convinced that this new technology is yet where it needs to be. The clarity is extraordinary, but rather than enhancing the viewing experience, this brightness somewhat mars it. At 48 fps, one sees EVERYTHING; this means that special effects, computer generated images, and edits do not blend as seamlessly as they would at a lower frame rate The quality of studio light, for example, is never quite the same as actual daylight; at 48 fps, in sequences where the close-ups were shot indoors and the wide shots on location, this slight shift in the light is evident and distracting. The extreme brightness and intensity of everything you see gives the film a rather cartoonish, "video game" quality at times; rather than feeling that I was seeing right into that world of Middle-earth, I felt that I was gazing straight into the film set 48 fps may well be the future, but the future isn't here quite yet - the rest of movie making technology needs to catch up to this higher frame rate, so that the minor flaws aren't exposed by the enhanced clarity.

Such concerns were not significant enough to spoil my enjoyment of the film; I will certainly see the movie again at 48fps - and at 24fps. With such a team of experts at the helm - from director and actors to designers and crew, and not forgetting the magnificent, soaring score from composer Howard Shore - how could the film be anything but wondrous? I was left with the feeling that I had spent time with a friend whom I had not seen for years. For almost a decade, Middle-earth has only been what we've already seen - we could revisit, but it was not new, not living and breathing. Now, here is our old acquaintance: returned, alive and well, and revealing new treasures! Hello old friend - it's wonderful to see you again. I'm glad you're back.



Koru: Maori symbol representing a fern frond as it opens. The koru reaches towards the light, striving for perfection, encouraging new, positive beginnings.



"Life can't be all work and no TORn" -- jflower

"I take a moment to fervently hope that the camaradarie and just plain old fun I found at TORn will never end" -- LOTR_nutcase





(This post was edited by entmaiden on Dec 10 2012, 4:23am)


Simon
Rivendell

Dec 10 2012, 4:28am

Post #10 of 30 (607 views)
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Ok... [In reply to] Can't Post

My first view will be at Imax 3D/Digital/48 fps ...i will lowed my expectations about the CGI at this frame rates (i will go see it in 24 fps too)...but i bet the CGI even at 48 fps is better than most of the movies this year!


jtarkey
Rohan


Dec 10 2012, 11:11am

Post #11 of 30 (464 views)
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This is in regards to the review thread above, but it was locked... [In reply to] Can't Post

As far as the CGI for the wargs go, I don't quite understand why the production didn't put more time into this.

I always say...animators need to look at JURASSIC PARK for how animals need to be rendered with CGI. Granted, the dinosaurs didn't have hair, you would still think more technicians would look to that film for inspiration.

I'm still waiting for a film that has better CGI than Jurassic Park. I honestly can't believe it hasn't been done yet. It's even worse that it came out in 1993 (20 YEARS AGO!!!!).

"You're love of the halflings leaf has clearly slowed your mind"


AlatarVinyamar
Lorien

Dec 10 2012, 11:26am

Post #12 of 30 (493 views)
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Alatar's Non-Spoilery review [In reply to] Can't Post

Ok, so here's my Non-spoiler review.

I loved it. Really loved it. In a strange way, I think I may even prefer it to LotR. Wait... I'm not insane! Its not as breathtaking as LotR was, but its also not as uneven. I can't recall any moment that was a breathtaking as the Lighting of the Beacons, or Gandalf's ride through Minas Tirith, but crucially, there were no jarring moments for me. No Nuclear Galadriel, no Denethor Flambee, no Scrubbing Bubbles. It is, in my opinion, the best adaptation of a Tolkien novel yet. Not because its purist, cause it isn't, but because it "feels" like The Hobbit. I was really, really surprised how close in tone it is to the books. Even the Troll scene, which I fully expected to be brought closer in tone to LotR was pure Hobbit. I'm not saying its the same, but it has the same tone. The same is true of almost every scene. Which would of course make you wonder, well how about all that "Holy Epic Backstory Batman". The Erebor and Azanulbizar backflashes are brilliant, and the White Council material is just fantastic, and yet somehow PJ has managed to marry the high fantasy style of these stories with the childlike tone and adventure quality of The Hobbit. Its a seriously impressive feat.

On the characters. Martin Freeman is right up there with Ian McKellan as the best ever performance of a Tolkien character. He inhabits Bilbo seamlessly. Every look and gesture is intelligently acted, beautifully balancing the sincerity with the bluster. I adored him. Richard Armitage as Thorin has done what Sean Bean did with Boromir. It may not be the character of Thorin from the book, and some will miss that, but I loved it. You care about Movie Thorin in a way I never did about Book Thorin. He's a proud insufferable git, but he has heart and depth. Of course, we learn to love him mostly through Ken Stott's portrayal of Balin. One of my favourite of the Dwarves from the book, and also the movie. Beautiful, subtle performance. James Nesbitt had some lovely moments also and shone through. Fili and Kili were nice, but nothing special, in many ways reminiscent of Merry and Pippin, characterwise. Ori had some nice moments, as did Dori. Nori was a bit invisible. Gloin had some impact in places, but Oin not so much. Bifur and Bombur had little to do. Dwalin was a bit of a curiosity. He just looks too tall! Whew, thats all 13 right?

Ian McKellan is back with a bang. You can see why he prefers Gandalf the Grey to Gandalf the White. Consummate performance. Just perfection. Radagast is great, a bit OTT on some of the comedy reactions, but perfect for the kids movie this is. I had no problem with him. Elrond is great here, a nice change from grumpy Elrond of LotR, much more likeable. Oh, and nice cameo from Figwit! Christopher Lee gives us a lovely nuanced Saruman, proud and arrogant, but for now still with his heart in the right place. And then there's Cate Blanchett. Oh sweet Lord she was amazing. Why oh why did PJ feel he had to mess with her character in LotR. THIS was the Galadriel I wanted to see in Fellowship. Just sublime.

Now to the baddies. The Pale Orc, Azog, was for me the least successful character. I remember Ang Lee talking about the difficulty of making the Incredible Hulk appear real, no matter how good the CG, simply because green skin looks fake. I think the same must be true of white skin, because this character just didn't work for me. Strangely enough, I fully expected to hate the Great Goblin, but this really worked for me, again, in the context of a kids movie. Nice job by Dame Edna! Of course, the central "baddie" in this move was Gollum and boy did he deliver. Again, I found his performance in Towers to be played too often for laughs, and not sinister enough. That's rectified here, and the Riddles in the Dark section is probably one of the best Tolkien scenes on film to date. They made the split personality really work here, and "stinker" was genuinely frightening. As for the moment in the corridor, where the pity of Bilbo rules the fate of many? Chills. Just. Chills.

Finally, the 48FPS. All I can say is that I didn't notice all this supposed "fake BBC" but maybe thats cause I watch and like BBC shows. I dunno. I thought it looked spectacular. Probably the best thing I can say about it is that the 3D was completely natural. I never felt like I was struggling to focus, or that I was getting a headache. I frankly forgot I had the glasses on. That said, I'm sure the movie will look equally gorgeous in 24FPS non 3D. Except for the Eagles. That bit is just stunning in the ultra high def 3D.

So there you go. For reference I should point out that I'm not as much of a fan of The Hobbit as a book as I am of LotR, and that in general I'm easily pleased by decent CG, so don't expect your reaction to be the same if your tastes differ!

But I bloody loved it.

Feel free to ask any questions you like.



Cave Troll
Rivendell

Dec 10 2012, 11:53am

Post #13 of 30 (432 views)
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Excellent review, thanks! [In reply to] Can't Post

Nice to finally hear a bit more about the dwarves and it's still such a big deal that Riddles in the Dark is getting rave reviews.

Pity about the wargs but what can you do...

Here's the thing: "padding" and dodgy CGI can be worked on in films 2 and 3. Poor casting/acting and badly-written characters cannot - and I'm hugely encouraged that these are the things that even the more negative reviews are giving plaudits to.


Carne
Tol Eressea

Dec 10 2012, 11:55am

Post #14 of 30 (437 views)
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Regarding Jurassic Park [In reply to] Can't Post

Most of the dinosaurs were done with animatronic, except the shots where they are fully revealed. Notice that 95% of the time they're shown in the dark. This makes it easier to hide the CGI. Had the whole movie been set during day time then the dinosaurs would have looked noticeably worse Smile


(This post was edited by Carne on Dec 10 2012, 11:56am)


jtarkey
Rohan


Dec 10 2012, 11:59am

Post #15 of 30 (430 views)
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I will have to kindly disagree... [In reply to] Can't Post

Take a look at this clip http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSI8nP0m24M

Full daylight, and still better than almost all CGI these days. Not all the shots in Jurassic Park are perfect. But there are a good handful that are better than almost any modern day blockbuster.

"You're love of the halflings leaf has clearly slowed your mind"


Carne
Tol Eressea

Dec 10 2012, 12:01pm

Post #16 of 30 (415 views)
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As I said [In reply to] Can't Post

This is one of very few CG shots, which means they had months to work on it.

Look at the gallimimus for example, they look terribly out of place.


tolktolk
Lorien

Dec 10 2012, 3:18pm

Post #17 of 30 (357 views)
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Are you ready for more reviews? [In reply to] Can't Post

Lots more new reviews have come in overnight, mainly in Britain, where the response has ranged from mixed to very positive, apart from the chap at the Telegraph who went way over the top in the fear and loathing department.

By contrast, the Times reviewer really enjoyed it:

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/...s/article3625874.ece

The morning paper Metro also gave it a thumbs up:

http://blogs.metro.co.uk/...-movie-middle-earth/

I'll post more if people still want to read them and aren't suffering from review fatigue.


Cave Troll
Rivendell

Dec 10 2012, 3:24pm

Post #18 of 30 (326 views)
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Thanks! [In reply to] Can't Post

Personally, I can't get enough. Smile

You wouldn't happen to be a Times subscriber would you? Wink


utku
Rivendell


Dec 10 2012, 3:25pm

Post #19 of 30 (354 views)
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From Metro review [In reply to] Can't Post

The new Hobbit movie is not without its faults its 569 minutes long, for starters
A small typo, but I've almost had a heart attack. :) Oh now I wonder if the trilogy will be over 9 hours.


Carne
Tol Eressea

Dec 10 2012, 3:26pm

Post #20 of 30 (372 views)
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SFX review: [In reply to] Can't Post

http://www.sfx.co.uk/...cted-journey-review/


Cave Troll
Rivendell

Dec 10 2012, 3:27pm

Post #21 of 30 (332 views)
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I think... [In reply to] Can't Post

it's an attempt at humour. Blush

Not sure if I like his attitude towards TTT and RTK, if I'm honest. Mad


utku
Rivendell


Dec 10 2012, 3:39pm

Post #22 of 30 (312 views)
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Oh.. [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't know I just assumed that because the original runtime is listed as 169 so I thought he has just mistyped it. Smile


unexpectedvisitor
Rohan

Dec 10 2012, 3:44pm

Post #23 of 30 (345 views)
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Den of Geek review [In reply to] Can't Post

http://www.denofgeek.com/...ected-journey-review

don't think i've seen that one posted yet. the reviewer pretty much loved it and pointed out that he thought the length was perfect, but didn't care much for 48 FPS (ended up giving the movie a 4 out of 5). did say that the HFR does work great for many of the outdoor shots and action sequences, though.


Cave Troll
Rivendell

Dec 10 2012, 4:15pm

Post #24 of 30 (263 views)
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Double oh [In reply to] Can't Post

You could well be right. Smile


Cave Troll
Rivendell

Dec 10 2012, 4:30pm

Post #25 of 30 (263 views)
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Sounds like WETA... [In reply to] Can't Post

really disappointed on the CG front.

One wonders if PJ put rather too much faith in their ability to produce amazing creatures from nothing.

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