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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
TH : An Expected Journey by Phil Dragash
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Lusitano
Tol Eressea


Mar 7 2013, 11:33pm

Post #1 of 99 (1006 views)
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TH : An Expected Journey by Phil Dragash Can't Post

Hi.


I just read this interesting review online by a croatian filmmaker called Phil Dragash, who also happens to be the composer of the much-lauded Youtube Audiobook of The Lord of the Rings with film soundtrack :

http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLE137F361D68B836E&feature=plcp

Heres his review :


http://phildragash.com/hobbit-review


A very interesting read as he is very articulate sharp and he brings up many important points about this film. My favourite bit was :


"Richard Armitage is perfectly cast... as Bard. But since he isn't Bard, he's – in my opinion – not as good as a 200-year old Dwarf King being that he is clearly not 200 years old in the film and unsurprisingly has less to do emotionally than the real Thorin from the books. All he primarily seems to do is scowl and stare. His look (and Fili and Kili's) is also severely misinterpreted as anything dwarvish and simply reeks of “4-Quadrant-Audience-Appeasement”. There was nothing engaging about him, nothing I can see that matches with much Tolkien wrote, and his relationship with Bilbo is also underplayed and ineffective. It almost felt like he had to recite lines from a script to dislike Bilbo – because I sure didn't feel that he disliked him at all, sans that he had to"

Also, love this :

"It's going to be a weird psychedelic bunch of Hobbit movies that fangirls will go “Thorin is so epic and beautiful” with"

Tongue

What do you think of his comments on the screenpaly writing? The music? I certainly was underwhelmed by the soundtrack, though i love many of the tracks...


PS: If you read this Phil, I love those sketches! Thranduil and Gandalfs are hilarious.Laugh

Vous commencez à m'ennuyer avec le port!!!


mutelock
Bree


Mar 8 2013, 12:21am

Post #2 of 99 (547 views)
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Huh? [In reply to] Can't Post

How can he say Richard is perfectly cast as Bard if he never saw Richard play Bard? Tongue Seriously, how imaginative can these critics get?


Lusitano
Tol Eressea


Mar 8 2013, 12:27am

Post #3 of 99 (530 views)
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these critics ? [In reply to] Can't Post

Unimpressed


What i think he means is that he probably was better suited to play Bard rather than Thorin.

Vous commencez à m'ennuyer avec le port!!!


imin
Valinor


Mar 8 2013, 12:30am

Post #4 of 99 (502 views)
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I have been listening to his version of the audiobook [In reply to] Can't Post

It is very good, i take it, its just him doing it in his spare time at home?

If people like audiobooks they should check out this guys channel.

His comments about fangirls has come true, but it's no big deal if girls/women like him, i just wish i was in his position, haha. At least it has made some look at the character in a different light - which considering i like book thorin, is a good thing to me!


mutelock
Bree


Mar 8 2013, 12:34am

Post #5 of 99 (504 views)
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Don't take it literally... [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm just pointing out that, nowadays, critics like to make jokes Wink It's fun. I'm always curious to see what they're going to come up next.


Salmacis81
Grey Havens


Mar 8 2013, 12:43am

Post #6 of 99 (481 views)
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Thorin [In reply to] Can't Post

Do you really think this Thorin was that bad?


Lusitano
Tol Eressea


Mar 8 2013, 12:53am

Post #7 of 99 (471 views)
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Imin [In reply to] Can't Post

i suppose it is. I am quite intrigued now with this..not a fan of audiobooks, but i want to give this a try..if you recommend it, then even better.


So you would like to be the tallest man in the room?
Wink

Yes hot dwarfs...i wonder if C Tolkien has heard the term...Shocked

mutelock : all right i just thought i read disdain in those words. Actually i wish the critics i read made more jokes like this man. Sometimes, after reading the critics reviews i feel depressed and no longer wish to go to the cinema. Crazy

Salmacis : i was super excited for this Thorin. His looks, except the beard, his voice, his clothing, his pose, everything seemed to be in place...then i watched the movie.

I was so underwhelmed, so disappointed, the whole brooding angry growling king returned felt so forced. His acting is so uninspired and wooden and unengaging...i rememeber when the 2nd trailer came out, some people mentioned his acting seemed flat or wooden....now i agree with them.

The man is lovely and a wonderfull person, but his performance was a massive disappointment for me and that ruins a lot of TH for me since Thorin is one of the main characters.

I still get chills from his singing, though.

Vous commencez à m'ennuyer avec le port!!!

(This post was edited by Lusitano on Mar 8 2013, 12:54am)


Salmacis81
Grey Havens


Mar 8 2013, 1:04am

Post #8 of 99 (446 views)
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That's too bad. [In reply to] Can't Post

He's not the Thorin that I see when I read the book, not even close. I haven't found myself dwelling on it though.


Magpie
Immortal


Mar 8 2013, 1:06am

Post #9 of 99 (437 views)
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psst to Lusitano: If you meant to reply to Imin.. you hit reply to the wrong post. [In reply to] Can't Post

It might not make a difference if you read flat mode but it does for people reading in threaded mode:



You hit reply to mutelock's post. And if someone is confused by who you're talking to they'll click the link above your post that says [In reply to] and they'll go to mutelock's post.


LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
TORn History Mathom-house ~ Torn Image Posting Guide


Lusitano
Tol Eressea


Mar 8 2013, 1:08am

Post #10 of 99 (423 views)
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Apologies [In reply to] Can't Post

Blush

Thanks for reminding me.

Vous commencez à m'ennuyer avec le port!!!


Lusitano
Tol Eressea


Mar 8 2013, 1:11am

Post #11 of 99 (430 views)
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Indeed it is [In reply to] Can't Post

i wanted to be in love with this Thorin, to really de drawn to him like i am when i am watching a great actor delivering some intricate performance...you just get sucked in...

I didnt, he was just one noted and monotonous.

I know that when i watch the dvds ill try to like him better this time. Thats me, i wnat to love Thorin, because we wont be seeing anew one for quite some time i bet...but i doubt ill radically change my feelings.

Vous commencez à m'ennuyer avec le port!!!


Magpie
Immortal


Mar 8 2013, 1:17am

Post #12 of 99 (414 views)
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no problem... [In reply to] Can't Post

:-)


LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
TORn History Mathom-house ~ Torn Image Posting Guide


imin
Valinor


Mar 8 2013, 1:28am

Post #13 of 99 (412 views)
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Yes i would like to be, lol [In reply to] Can't Post

As for the audiobooks. I am quite a fan of audiobooks so maybe i am more likely to find his version good. However i think his voice is different to what is officially available (great though they are) and the different voice combined with the music, cries of people, noises all add to the image one can create i have found.

Would be interesting to know what you think of them. I certainly hope you like them more than you like movie Thorin! Tongue


Lindele
Gondor


Mar 8 2013, 1:36am

Post #14 of 99 (426 views)
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Very [In reply to] Can't Post

Unimaginitive, off and all around completely unrelevent review IMO. Probably jealous that he didn't do the score.
That is ten minutes spent I will never get back.


(This post was edited by Lindele on Mar 8 2013, 1:44am)


Roheryn
Grey Havens

Mar 8 2013, 1:36am

Post #15 of 99 (452 views)
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I wish [In reply to] Can't Post

reviewers who criticize the movie would see it more than once so they could at least put their unfounded criticisms to rest.

"Thorin doesn't seem to age, and the whole exile ploy was again too obvious and ramped up the drama for no reason when there is easily drama enough without making changes to the story."

Thorin does age, quite obviously, from Erebor to the "never forgetting, never forgetting" scene, to Azanulbizar, to the main storyline. One does actually have to look at him to notice: his hairline recedes, his hair starts greying, his whole bearing changes, his fighting style evolves.

Exile ploy? Not sure what this is on about, but the take on it in the movie is not far off what Tolkien wrote, if you add in the Appendices and the full Quest of Erebor.

"Were we prepared for an immediate dialogue without warning? The answer is a loud 'No',..."

That actually made me laugh. What, we're supposed to be warned before characters speak to each other?

"Richard Armitage is perfectly cast... as Bard. But since he isn't Bard, he's – in my opinion – not as good as a 200-year old Dwarf King being that he is clearly not 200 years old in the film and unsurprisingly has less to do emotionally than the real Thorin from the books. All he primarily seems to do is scowl and stare."

A 200-year-old Dwarf King is still in his prime; they don't age like humans. Based on what Tolkien wrote about Dwarves, I have no problem with buying a younger-looking Thorin, and I'm fine with a little artistic license here anyways, as I think it enhances Thorin's character arc, and thus the whole movie, a lot. And I don't think Dragash saw the same movie I did, if he honestly belives Thorin has less to do emotionally in the movie than in the book. Thorin in the book has very little emotion beyond what you'd expect from a grumpy garden gnome, at least until near the end, when we get a REALLY grumpy garden gnome, followed by a repentant dwarf who's risen above garden gnome status.

"I even liked the song, but the lighting kind of killed it."

Since when does firelight kill the mood for a hauntingly stirring, epic beginning-of-a-quest song?

"They could have shown more shots we were familiar with in “LOTR” rather than give brand new ones which skewed the geography a little, and left me slightly disoriented." followed by: "Almost every recurring nod to “Lord of the Rings” made me frown in confusion and tilt my head like a husky."

So it's bad to have nods to LOTR, but there ought to be more of them?

"I recall one instance where Thorin asks Dwalin to accompany him through a ravine where I said 'there's some pretty cool companionship'"

Well, actually, no, if this is referring to the ravine that leads to Rivendell, Thorin never asks Dwalin to accompany him. The all slide into the cave together. Then Dwalin leads them out. Thorin says nothing, but follows.

"Galadriel is a master-ninja, and I was certain they wouldn't include that telepathy again, but from what I saw so far in that film, I was not surprised in the least."

Like it or not, it's canon in book-LOTR. It's in keeping with what we know of communication between Galadriel, Elrond, and Gandalf.

"I personally believe this is Peter Jackson forgetting for a fifteenth time that the eagles aren't transportation vehicles and wouldn't be able to fly anyone to Mount Doom in Mordor."

??? Transport by eagle taxi from the tops of trees on the east side of the Misty Mountains to the Carrock is straight out of the book (granted, with an overnight stop at the eagles' eyries in the book). I don't get this complaint. Dragash indicates he's read the book, but it doesn't seem like he remembers it very well.

And I think his complaints about the soundtrack are just plain off-base. Perhaps one reason might be because he's comparing the music for just AUJ to the music of the whole LOTR trilogy? We don't have all the pieces yet. Though even with the piece we do have, I disagree with pretty much everything Dragash writes.


Anyways, those for me are the most glaring head-scratchers in this review.


Lusitano
Tol Eressea


Mar 8 2013, 1:37am

Post #16 of 99 (402 views)
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Well [In reply to] Can't Post

a very small man ..can cast..a very large shadow.Wink Think Bonaparte.

Sounds interesting. I shall give it a try and let you know what i think of it. If i like it half as well as did the thorin fangirls, ill be satisfied.

Cool

Vous commencez à m'ennuyer avec le port!!!


Elessar
Valinor


Mar 8 2013, 2:35am

Post #17 of 99 (393 views)
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Thanks! [In reply to] Can't Post

I figured it was a waste of time but glad someone mentioned it.



mefansmum
Rivendell

Mar 8 2013, 4:16am

Post #18 of 99 (388 views)
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The ends of the spectrum. [In reply to] Can't Post

It seems your review is close to the negative extreme of the RA as Thorin spectrum and as we know, it is all a matter of opinion, so I thought to quote another review close to the positive extreme of that spectrum.

I suspect most of us fall somewhere in between with our opinions of both how we wanted Thorin to be portrayed and how well we thought RA portrayed him.

The whole review can be found here

http://www.airlockalpha.com/...xpected-journey.html

and this is what he says about Thorin.

But even with McKellen and the other returning cast members of Lord of the Rings, in the end it's Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield who steals the film. Here again Jackson knows where to butter his bread -- Armitage is simply wonderful as the grim dwarven king trying to do the impossible. Armitage shoulders most of the load -- in the end it's his movie -- and that's a good thing.


AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Mar 8 2013, 6:47am

Post #19 of 99 (373 views)
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I vehemently disagree with the majority of what he said, however, [In reply to] Can't Post

there were a few points on which I concur. And it was all worth it to see his hilarious Azog drawing. "Gorka Morka! I am alive!" Indeed. That sums that up perfectly.

"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


Glorfindela
Valinor

Mar 8 2013, 8:52am

Post #20 of 99 (328 views)
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Very good post, Roheryn [In reply to] Can't Post

I couldn't have put it better myself.

I think film Thorin is wonderfully played, and I absolutely love the soundtrack for the film.

No time to write more…

(Odd how the OP keeps initiating all these negative posts.)


(This post was edited by Glorfindela on Mar 8 2013, 8:54am)


ShireHorse
Rohan

Mar 8 2013, 9:49am

Post #21 of 99 (341 views)
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You're right about extreme ends of the spectrum, mefansmum, [In reply to] Can't Post

and Lusitano must have searched a long way to find a critic whose negative opinion of Armitage agreed with his own. But, by suggesting that your own positive review of him is also extreme does the man a disservice. I read hundreds of reviews when the film came out and just about all of them were positive about RA's Thorin. I could quote LOADS but here are just a few to back up my statement garnered from an analysis I did for another forum:

"Richard Armitage delivers a dead-on performance of Thorin. For those of us who know what the future holds for Thorin, I can clearly state the casting was perfect." (Our own TORn reviewer, Calisuri)

"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." (TORn staffer, Greendragon)

"Out of the thirteen dwarves, maybe four are given real personalities in this initial film. The one that stands above the rest is, appropriately, the leader, Thorin Oakenshield, played by Richard Armitage. Similar to Viggo Mortensen in Lord of the Rings, Armitage is a long-time character actor who achieves leading man status.......dynamic and awesome......Armitage’s performance is the standout." (Slashfilm)

"We also get the introduction to our secondary protagonist, the serious and driven leader of the Dwarves, Thorin Oakenshield (Armitage). Armitage is positively heroic in the role and Jackson gives him plenty of camera time to shine........As I previously mentioned, Armitage brings gravitas and solemnity to the role of Thorin, especially when surrounded by the clownish Dwarves in his company. " (Collider)

" Armitage is pretty great as the bold dwarf prince, handling most of the big action scenes, and bringing the kind of gravitas and absolute sincerity a fantasy like this requires. Likely, people will be championing him as THE HOBBIT’s big discovery." (JoBlo)

"Richard Armitage as Thorin is as regal as Aragorn proved to be, a character of sufficient complexity as to make him interesting." (Twitchfilm)

"Another stand-out performer is Richard Armitage, who plays Thorin, the leader of the dwarves." (Film List)

"No less welcome is Richard Armitage, scarcely known here, although he has throbbed hearts on a regular basis on British TV; he now pulls off the task, deemed impossible by every expert on Middle-Earth, of making a dwarf seductive. To be honest, the dwarves come across as a jumble of Brueghel faces, lit with grins, scrunched by scowls, and fronted by bulbous conks; only Armitage, as Thorin Oakenshield, the leader of the pack, earns consistent dramatic attention, and he brings the rumpus of the early scenes to a beautiful halt as he pauses to croon, in a yearning baritone, an anthem of dwarf-desire—“Far over the misty mountains cold.” (New Yorker)

"There are a few dwarves who stand out and, luckily, Thorin is one of them.Thorin is a complete bad*ss. I wanted to like this dude in this movie and I liked him every bit as much as I wanted to. He's like the flagship of this movie. You've gotta make that guy bad*ss. You've gotta make his and Bilbo's relationship something you wanna grasp to - you want them to work it out and become friends. That's totally the centrepiece of the movie and I loved it." (Jeremy Jahns, YT critic)

"Thorin is the heart and the most beautiful character in the movie, a kind of sore Macbeth animated by the heroic desire to regain a kingdom that has been taken away." (Coming Soon, Italy)

"The new cast – especially Richard Armitage as the proud, vengeful Thorin – is immediately likable.....Standout dwarf performances come from James Nesbitt’s affable Bofur and Ken Stott’s reassuring, avuncular Balin, but neither can hold a candle to the swaggering, smoldering Richard Armitage as company leader Thorin Oakenshield. Eyes gleaming with red vengeance and self-import, Armitage makes Thorin a study in exiled royalty, a legend-in-the-making whose every move and utterance belongs to the storied ages." (Little White Lies)

" Thorin son of Thrain (a terrific Richard Armitage), the heir of Erebor....." (Boston Herald)

"Richard Armitage creates a Thorin that the audience believes and cares about: can a dwarf king be as big a heartthrob and action hero as Aragorn? Surprisingly, yes. (I predict that a certain anticipated scene at the end of the third Hobbit film will be one of the biggest tear-jerkers in cinematic history)." (Wormtalk)

"Armitage brings an extraordinary depth, noble sadness and pathos to the role of this potential future king who has lost so much, serving as the perfect counterweight to the general jesting and frivolity that his troupe of 12 Dwarven comrades bring to the table." (Whatculture)

Would you like some more? I've got a million of them where the words "awesome/brilliant/a revelation" are constantly used. And don't forget that, in over 2000 reviews on this forum, we Ringers rated him 4.86 for his acting, a score that brings him ahead of Ian McKellen.


Roheryn
Grey Havens

Mar 8 2013, 10:39am

Post #22 of 99 (319 views)
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*mods up* [In reply to] Can't Post

Thank you, thank you, thank you! for that, ShireHorse. That's a wonderful collection of reviews, and they all echo my sentiments perfectly. RA's performance is the standout performance in a well-acted movie, and I'm so grateful to PJ for getting this casting right. From everything I've read, RA takes the role quite seriously, a la Viggo with Aragorn, and we really couldn't hope for better. Some day I (and probably about two million other women) would love to tell RA in person: Thank you.


Arannir
Valinor

Mar 8 2013, 10:40am

Post #23 of 99 (312 views)
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Thanks for that... [In reply to] Can't Post

... I got a bit confused since I remembered from the December reviews that even the bashs had usually praise or at least positive mentions of RA in them - so thanks for putting that in perspective.

Is anyone else fed up - btw - of clever people all over the world to play around with the "expected/unexpected" thing :D


Roheryn
Grey Havens

Mar 8 2013, 11:07am

Post #24 of 99 (301 views)
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Thanks, Glorfindela. [In reply to] Can't Post

Or can we call you Glorfy? Wink

I could have written twice as many counterarguments to that review but (a) I didn't need to put everyone to sleep and (b) I think I made my point sufficiently. Anyone bothering to review a movie -- and even more so those persons who feel the need to write so extensively -- ought to at least make sure they're remembering the movie right before praising *or* criticizing it. I'm so tired of reading critical reviews where it seems like the reviewer slept through half the movie, or maybe spent a good part of the movie on his or her cell phone. They do everyone a disservice. If they can't be bothered, for instance, to remember what Thorin looked like from one time period to the next, then they should go see the movie again! I don't have a problem with well-considered and thoughtfully argued criticisms; but those to me seem scarce.


Glorfindela
Valinor

Mar 8 2013, 4:14pm

Post #25 of 99 (261 views)
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You can call me anything you like, Roheryn [In reply to] Can't Post

I am also sick and tired of people like the OP trawling the Internet trying to find negative posts (or 'reviews) written by others who, as you say, seem to have slept through half the film.

Thanks also to ShireHorse for posting those reviews (I take it they are all from American sources?).

What amazes me is how completely different Richard Armitage is in his quiet and polite, real-life persona, as opposed to when he is playing Thorin. I simply cannot connect the two personalities. Apart from in AUJ, I've only once seen him do 'strong emotion' of sorts, and that is recently (and very briefly) in a new UK series called Strike Back: Project Dawn, in which his character is killed at the beginning. (The series is very violent, and that moment is replayed in the second episode.)

I guess Richard Armitage is of the method-acting school, so is able to sink into a character he is playing.

I so look forward to seeing Thorin in the next two films, along with Bilbo and Gandalf, of course. (I think I may have a heart attack and need to be carted away to hospital – or to a mental institution – at the end of the final film.)


In Reply To
Or can we call you Glorfy? Wink

I could have written twice as many counterarguments to that review but (a) I didn't need to put everyone to sleep and (b) I think I made my point sufficiently. Anyone bothering to review a movie -- and even more so those persons who feel the need to write so extensively -- ought to at least make sure they're remembering the movie right before praising *or* criticizing it. I'm so tired of reading critical reviews where it seems like the reviewer slept through half the movie, or maybe spent a good part of the movie on his or her cell phone. They do everyone a disservice. If they can't be bothered, for instance, to remember what Thorin looked like from one time period to the next, then they should go see the movie again! I don't have a problem with well-considered and thoughtfully argued criticisms; but those to me seem scarce.


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