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Official DOS fan reaction thread: part 4 - POST YOUR REVIEWS HERE

Superuser / Moderator

Dec 15 2013, 9:25pm

Post #1 of 5 (543 views)
Official DOS fan reaction thread: part 4 - POST YOUR REVIEWS HERE Can't Post

Please post your general movie reivews here (i.e. threads for general reactions, "I just saw it for the 1st...2nd... 6th time (that last one if for gramma Wink).

Thanks! Smile

Part 3

Part 2

Part 1

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 Altaira on Dec 15 2013, 9:25pm)


Dec 15 2013, 10:00pm

Post #2 of 5 (300 views)
ALRIGHTY THEN [In reply to] Can't Post

It's entertaining enough, but it meddled with things best left unmeddled with, Precious.

1. I like Gandalf's plan of 'grab the Arkenstone, rally the Dwarves, everyone kill Smaug'. Makes more sense than the book's plan of 'Bilbo steals everything very slowly'. However, this kind of ruins the later plot device of 'Bilbo accidentally steals the Arkenstone without knowing what it is'.

2. Not having the lengthy introductions to Beorn works quite well. Not sure how reasonable it is to run into someone's house and expect them to be okay with it though. Also, Beorn looked like Wolverine's deadbeat uncle.

3. BOLG BROKE TIME. Azog's mob get summoned to Dol Guldur, chat to the Necromancer, then Bolg and some others head back to Beorn's in time to be 'close behind' the Company when they leave the next morning. That's a round trip of about five hundred miles done in one night. I can't help but imagine fast-forwarding wargs set to Yakety Sax.

4. The spider scene worked well, except that it didn't explain why the Dwarves waited until the second time they were attacked by the spiders to actually fight them (which they did quite effectively).

5. Tauriel wasn't as awful as I imagined. The love interest with Kili was even worse than I imagined, but Tauriel as an idealistic elf who wants to fight the evil beyond her borders works as a way of keeping the Wood Elves involved with the story.

6. Thranduil... when Orlando Bloom as Legolas acts you off the screen, you should realise you're doing something wrong. Like trying to be an actor. Someone I saw the film with mentioned he was better than Celeborn, but a three-week dead fox could portray Celeborn better than FotR did.

7. Bard. Who put Will Turner in this movie? You never see him and Legolas on screen at the same time. Coincidence? I THINK NOT.

8. One day I may see a movie where Stephen Fry plays someone other than Stephen Fry.

9. Gandalf discovering Sauron's alive and... sort of well: I'm pretty sure the White Council don't find that out until after they've chased him out of Dol Guldur, but that's fine, it's not that important. I'm not sure it was necessary, though; I think it might have worked better had they surmised that it was the Witch King, since they found that he'd got out of his tomb. Then when they launch their attack, perhaps THEN they could find out what they're up against.

10. The Dwarves in the mountain. It was all a bit ridiculous really; I understand Smaug's trying to chase down nine dwarves and a hobbit instead of merrily trampling hordes of the bearded stunty ones underfoot, but the whole series of them lighting the forges and making a trap (and surfing on liquid gold... no) and then making the giant Easter egg... that was bad. Mainly because Smaug gets insulted and possibly even hurt by the dwarves' schemes and then goes off to burn LAKE TOWN instead. Leaving them in the mountain to steal his treasure and make better weapons or more powerful traps. In the book he went off to burn Lake Town because he couldn't find the dwarves on the outside of his mountain and didn't know about the secret door, and he knew they'd come from Lake Town because of the 'barrel rider' comment. In the movie, he knows exactly where Thorin is - in the throne room, and his best attempt at killing Smaug just failed. I cannot for the life of me fathom what logic sends the fire drake essentially running away.

"Who the hell are you?" he growled.
"I the hell am Harry," I said.
He pulled out his own gym bag and slammed the car door closed. "You always a wiseass?"
"No. Sometimes I'm asleep."

-Harry Dresden, 'Blood Rites', A Novel of The Dresden Files

The Shire

Dec 15 2013, 10:03pm

Post #3 of 5 (280 views)
My first review! [In reply to] Can't Post

Saw the film in 24 FPS 3D on Friday evening and after a couple of days I am still not 100% sure about what I think of it? I loved AUJ, the slow pace (which many critics hated) was just right in my mind.

However DOS is a different kettle of fish! It simply hammers along at a rate of knots!! There's lots to love but also a lot that leaves me unhappy. I realise the source material for The Hobbit is very different to the source material for LOTR, and maybe The Hobbit is therefore more aimed a children? But for this Tolkien fan, DOS simply deviates too much from the book and is way too action packed. The pace is relentless! We never get to linger for long in the beautiful/creepy/stunning new locations of Middle Earth. The first half hour felt way too rushed for me and the Smaug/Dwarves sequence also I felt went on too long and deviated from the book unnecessarily.

The LOTR trilogy of films are probably my favourite films of all time, and Peter really did set the bar very high with three bona-fide classic movies to stand the test of time. My gut feeling is that the Hobbit movies will not reach the grandeur and magnificence of the LOTR trilogy.

I feel that one of the problems for me is that Peter is pandering too much to a modern young audience, whom perhaps he considers (correctly) to have a short attention span! Thus he has responded to the widespread criticism of AUJ being slow to get going, by filling DOS with non stop action. This is at the expense of having further character development and moments where the film can breathe. Take the beginning. We are introduced to a fantastic (and pivotal) character in the shape of Beorn. Yet he is barely on screen for a few minutes. Same with Mirkwood, in and out.

One of my main reasons for loving the work of Tolkien is the fact that nature and the grandeur of the natural environment are central themes in his work. Almost another character if you like. For me, despite P.J creating stunning vistas in the film, the characters do not linger long enough in them before the next cut to another location or fast paced action scene. I feel that Bilbo, in particular would be much more in awe of the surroundings, having never left the humble Shire before? The LOTR definitely portrayed the wonder of Frodo and Sam and indeed the rest of the fellowship as they journeyed through the realms of Middle Earth.

E.g. Where in DOS are the days that Bilbo spent exploring the wonder of the Elven Halls?

As for the action in DOS, for my tastes it was just too OTT. Yes it was momentarily enjoyable and laugh inducing (Bomber in the Barrel Kung Fu style...indeed) but just way too OTT. There is no real sense of jeopardy for the dwarves and Bilbo as the CGI Orcs scatter and die in their hundreds. Yes Kili takes an arrow, but to what end?

Compare the fight with the Goblins/Orcs in Moria in Fellowship when you genuinely fear for Frodo and the rest of the fellowship.

I feel that the action in the Middle Earth films has been heading in a more a more OTT direction since the battle of Pelennor Fields in ROTK. The Goblin Kingdom escape scenes in AUJ were frankly ridiculous and the action is even more unbelievable and gravity defying in DOS

The final hour of the movie is spent in Erebor (with countless cuts back to Laketown), and Smaug is undoubtedly a fantastic creation, who jumps from the screen. But why deviate from the book so much to drag out the confrontation (10-15 minutes too long IMHO)? Again the action with the dwarves taking on Smaug is demeaning to the dragon and at times just becomes plain silly (again gravity and physics defying action)!! The gold statue melting at the end? Again, to what end? Thorin riding molten gold in a wheelbarrow...come on Peter?

I realise that the Hobbit is a children's story, but if Jackson is attempting to tie in the Hobbit with LOTR by adding all the extra story lines and characters, then why not make the Hobbit films closer to LOTR in terms of feel and grandeur and tone. (i.e. no smutty innuendo jokes!!).

You would think from my review that I hated the film. Not so...I loved MUCH of it, but SOME of it was just too much for my tastes. I can understand maybe the need to introduce an invented strong female character, as Tolkien wrote his books in an era when strong female characters were just not considered in heroic adventure stories. Plus Evangeline Lily is very easy on the eye!! Some of the other introduced stuff..I'm not so sure?
As I said earlier, Jackson created a masterpiece with his LOTR trilogy and therefore a hard act to follow. My gut feeling is that these films will not reach the same heights.

It saddens me that one of the greatest film directors of the modern era, perhaps feels the need to pander to the Playstation/Xbox generation. Too much action not enough substance is the curse of many modern films. Hopefully TABA will be a masterpiece.

As for DOS, on first viewing I would give it a 7/10. I'm off to see it again this afternoon in IMAX 48FPS 3D format, so I expect to be blown away by the visuals. I will update my review after a second viewing.


Dec 15 2013, 11:02pm

Post #4 of 5 (228 views)
It was... [In reply to] Can't Post


"Seriously, why was the scene with CGI dwarf ass NOT in the theatrical cut?!"


Dec 16 2013, 3:27am

Post #5 of 5 (179 views)
I could not resist [In reply to] Can't Post

In Reply To
3. BOLG BROKE TIME. Azog's mob get summoned to Dol Guldur, chat to the Necromancer, then Bolg and some others head back to Beorn's in time to be 'close behind' the Company when they leave the next morning. That's a round trip of about five hundred miles done in one night. I can't help but imagine fast-forwarding wargs set to Yakety Sax.

I simply could not resist.


Half a league, half a league, half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death, rode the six hundred.
'Forward, the Light Brigade! Charge for the guns' he said:
Into the valley of Death rode the six hundred.

Theirs not to make reply, theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Into the valley of Death rode the six hundred.


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