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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
"The Hobbit" films ranked as among the worst out of 5,000+ films of the 2010s.
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2ndBreffest
Lorien


Jan 5, 6:23pm

Post #26 of 78 (2468 views)
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CGI... [In reply to] Can't Post

I didn't care for the look of the 48fps or the cgi, but I think the problem has more to do with how these things were implemented. From now on, whenever someone asks for some examples for why I didn't like the Hobbit movies, I may just direct them to this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nuuWg4naU9o Sly


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 6, 12:59am

Post #27 of 78 (2397 views)
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The Hobbit CGI CIRCUS [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes, that video includes some of the most video game-like moments most of which I could have done without.

#FidelityToTolkien


Paulo Gabriel
Lorien

Jan 6, 1:56am

Post #28 of 78 (2390 views)
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That video... [In reply to] Can't Post

was made by a Hobbit-movie fan. So I don't see how it helps your ''cause''.


2ndBreffest
Lorien


Jan 6, 9:14am

Post #29 of 78 (2358 views)
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yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

a Hobbit movie fan who admits that some of the cgi and action scenes are a bit silly. As far as my "cause", while it is true that unconvincing cgi and ridiculous action sequences account for only a fraction of my problems with this adaptation, the video also inadvertently highlights some of my other issues. Clearly the video may not convince fans of the movies that it is not a good adaptation, but to mind, it serves as an adequate trailer to the trilogy as a whole.


Noria
Gondor

Jan 7, 3:07pm

Post #30 of 78 (2262 views)
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The video [In reply to] Can't Post

Watched that somewhat amusing video – anything can be made ridiculous when it’s repeated over and over. However that makes it a misrepresentative and inaccurate sampling of The Hobbit movies.

The Hobbit novel is a light, funny, sometimes deliberately silly, almost fairy tale that suddenly turns epic and darker at Erebor. Unlike the more weighty and serious LotR films that are treated as history and only are leavened by moments of humour, The Hobbit movies, especially at first, are more intentionally humourous and are meant to be FUN. You know, fun. Many of the action sequences reflect that.

Of course all that changes abruptly once Fili is killed, and the already much darker tone of the films turns tragic, though humour creeps back in through the tears as Bilbo says goodbye to the Dwarves and returns home to the auction. But the bitter-sweet ending is definitely not as bitter as that of LotR.

I get it. One of the reasons that some here dislike TH movies is that they find at least some of the big action sequences in TH movies objectionable, because for them those sequences are too big, too silly, shouldn't exist at all or all of the above. Fair enough. But did anyone expect Smaug to be on set during his conversation with Bilbo? Of course Martin Freeman had to use his imagination and acting skills – as actors do - but he did it on a vast and beautifully dressed set with Smaug’s dialogue performed by dialect coach Leith McPherson. She did a pretty good job. Elsewhere the actors were just off camera speaking their lines for their doubles or to their fellow actors. How should the film makers have created the Great Goblin? The trolls? The spiders? We can argue about stuff like people in suits versus digital Orcs forever; it is simply a matter of preference.

One of the few quibbles I had with Fellowship of the Ring the first time I saw it was how small conflicts in the book had been amped up, as in Balin’s Tomb and Amon Hen, or invented altogether, like the wizard’s duel. I soon came to understand and appreciate them and similar sequences in the subsequent films, and to recognize that this is PJ’s style. Many people dislike the confrontation between Thorin and Smaug in Erebor and it could have been done in many different ways. But a confrontation there was going to be because The Hobbit movie Dwarves are more like the Dwarves of LotR, like Gimli, than the cowardly weaklings of the Hobbit book. It would have been unsatisfying and unsympathetic if the former had behaved as the book Dwarves did.

Places like the Goblin tunnels, the Woodland Realm and Erebor had to be created digitally because they were too vast to be actual sets. There was no location in New Zealand that provided the exact geography that PJ wanted for the final battle. On the other hand, Bag End, Radagast’s house, Rivendell, the Prancing Pony, Beorn’s house, Mirkwood, Dale, Laketown and parts of the Woodland Realm and Erebor were real, created in great detail and with great care by the design and fabrication people. All, whether real or digital, are amazing.

I love TH movies and though I have some quibbles and criticisms, the physical look of the films and the use of special effects are not amongst them.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 7, 3:32pm

Post #31 of 78 (2257 views)
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Of goblin-kings and stranger things. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I get it. One of the reasons that some here dislike TH movies is that they find at least some of the big action sequences in TH movies objectionable, because for them those sequences are too big, too silly, shouldn't exist at all or all of the above. Fair enough. But did anyone expect Smaug to be on set during his conversation with Bilbo? Of course Martin Freeman had to use his imagination and acting skills – as actors do - but he did it on a vast and beautifully dressed set with Smaug’s dialogue performed by dialect coach Leith McPherson. She did a pretty good job. Elsewhere the actors were just off camera speaking their lines for their doubles or to their fellow actors. How should the film makers have created the Great Goblin? The trolls? The spiders? We can argue about stuff like people in suits versus digital Orcs forever; it is simply a matter of preference.


About the Great Goblin I'll only say that, whether he was created with practical effects or digitally, he did not need a production number to rival the show tune sung by King Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar. Smaug did not need to be three to five times the size he was in the book, requiring a Black Arrow that would more accurately be described as a ballista bolt in order to slay him. The tight, claustrophobic goblin tunnels did not need to be transformed into a maze of catwalks and bridges. For me, at least, it's not the techniques used to create them, it's the way they were conceived and visualized for the films. It's the shear amount of excess that bothers me, similar to the problems I had with Jackson's King Kong.

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jan 7, 3:37pm)


Noria
Gondor

Jan 8, 2:52pm

Post #32 of 78 (2210 views)
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Fair enough. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
About the Great Goblin I'll only say that, whether he was created with practical effects or digitally, he did not need a production number to rival the show tune sung by King Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar. Smaug did not need to be three to five times the size he was in the book, requiring a Black Arrow that would more accurately be described as a ballista bolt in order to slay him. The tight, claustrophobic goblin tunnels did not need to be transformed into a maze of catwalks and bridges. For me, at least, it's not the techniques used to create them, it's the way they were conceived and visualized for the films. It's the shear amount of excess that bothers me, similar to the problems I had with Jackson's King Kong.


Fair enough. PJ made the choices he made and nobody has to agree with them. As we’ve touched upon before, I too dislike the Goblin King’s song.

No, they didn’t have to make Smaug so large. I think I remember someone in TH Appendices mentioning that PJ very much wanted to make Smaug unique and distinguish him from other cinematic dragons, and he thought size would be one way. I think that was unnecessary because Smaug was superb and that is all down to the animation and Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance. However that huge size adds a greater measure of implacability and omnipotence to the character.

But I was fine with the huge black arrow, the windlance as a red herring and Bard’s actual confrontation with Smaug. I regard the movies as alternative versions of the books as well as adaptations and enjoyed many of the surprises the film makers served up – like how Bard killed the dragon. Sometimes I don’t like the surprises, for instance in The Two Towers when Treebeard refused to help in the war with Saruman. It made me laugh at my own expectations but annoyed me at the same time; but then I didn’t really care for the way the movies made the wise and dignified Ents into buffoons.

I really love most of the design choices made in all six movies, including the Goblin tunnels in TH. PJ wanted something novel for those. I liked how the Goblin’s cavern, the Woodland Realm and Erebor were all vast open underground spaces, yet movement was still confined to walkways and stairs as if the characters were actually in tunnels. To my mind, all three realms were very well designed and executed, filled with atmosphere and interest. The Woodland Realm and Erebor were beautiful and even the Gobl


Kelly of Water's Edge
Rohan

Jan 25, 2:14pm

Post #33 of 78 (1678 views)
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To me, the problem with the nascent love story [In reply to] Can't Post

was that it ignores the cannon of the friendship between Legolas and Gimli being groundbreaking. It's a bit less significant if Kili and Tauriel formed that deep a connection prior to that. I think the tragedy of the Durin family was enough drama without that being thrown in. I suppose it was felt the original story was too male-heavy and needed at least one female character. Hey, if that was the issue why not have truly have made her the Captain of the Guard complete with the drunk scene and Bilbo feeling bad that she was going to get in trouble for their escape because she'd been decent?

I think a more general and significant issue is that The Hobbit was never really meant to be quite as epic as Lord of the Rings, and the trilogy attempted to make the story something it never was intended to be.


Kelly of Water's Edge
Rohan

Jan 25, 2:17pm

Post #34 of 78 (1671 views)
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Completely agree. [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes, the prequel trilogy had issues, but there were a few scenes - especially Riddles in the Dark and Thorin's death - which were just as good as anything in LOTR.


Solicitr
Gondor


Jan 25, 6:11pm

Post #35 of 78 (1650 views)
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Subject [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Yes, the prequel trilogy had issues, but there were a few scenes - especially Riddles in the Dark and Thorin's death - which were just as good as anything in LOTR.


Basically because, like the best scenes in the LR movies, PJ actually followed the book and used its dialogue.


Noria
Gondor

Jan 26, 3:52pm

Post #36 of 78 (1597 views)
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The romance [In reply to] Can't Post

I too don’t particularly care for the romantic aspect of the relationship between Tauriel and Kili either. That being said, IMO the Starlight Feast scene is one of the best of either trilogy – beautiful, moving and evocative of the Elves of the First Age. And the much loathed triangle consists of Legolas glowering a couple of times and his decision to leave the Woodland Realm. The entire thing occupies only a few minutes of screen time anyway.

For me, the Tauriel/Kili relationship worked better when it was about two young people from very different cultures, managing to see past the prejudices and hostility of their hide-bound elders and forge a deep connection. But I don’t believe it detracts from canon Legolas/Gimli or Galadriel/Gimli because it died with Kili.

(I have wondered if PJ was not a fan of the romance either since he resisted the urgings of Boyens and Walsh to make Kili and Tauriel closer in height.)

I like Tauriel and think she enhances the movies, especially the subplot of her rebellion against Thranduil’s isolationism. Several young women and girls of my acquaintance are big fans of the character. It was too bad that the emphasis in BotFA seemed to be more on her relationship with Kili.

As for the epic quality of the movies, I agree that the original story is more intimate than epic and changes had to be made to it to make it bigger. That, I have always believed, was inevitable given the expectations and requirements of the LotR movie fanbase and the studios funding the production. Also, movie Hobbit had to match the Middle-earth created in its predecessors. There was no going back after the LotR films and a small, more literal adaptation of TH was never going to happen. Myself, I was happy with the larger, more complex and detailed world that we saw in TH movies.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 26, 4:11pm

Post #37 of 78 (1596 views)
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Tauriel/Kili [In reply to] Can't Post

I've already explained how I felt the romance was underdeveloped. In addtion, it seemed like an unnecessary distraction from the main plot that didn't add any forward momentum to the films. In it's defense, though, the subplot did become narratively convenient once Jackson decided that some of the Dwarves would remain in Lake-town until after Smaug's attack. I also did appreciate the generational conflict between Thranduil and the younger Tauriel, something that would not have worked with Legolas (as his is at the time of the Quest of Erebor) and his father.

Tolkien did set up some animosity between the Wood-elves and the Dwarves, but it stemmed from events long before the time of Thorin Oakenshield and is not made nearly as explicit nor as bitter in the book as it becomes in the films.

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jan 26, 4:21pm)


Kelly of Water's Edge
Rohan

Jan 26, 7:47pm

Post #38 of 78 (1573 views)
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Without doubt [In reply to] Can't Post

LOTR coming before The Hobbit was an issue that couldn't be reversed once done. The unfortunate and unavoidable long delay between them also undoubtedly rushed production, as getting the acting portion of The Hobbit in the can while Sir Ian was still young enough to play a Gandalf who was younger than he was during LOTR had become an issue (perhaps with getting it done before the actors playing the elves who appeared in both trilogies visibly aged any further and getting Christopher Lee back as Saruman at all considering his advanced age being secondary issues).


Solicitr
Gondor


Jan 27, 1:51am

Post #39 of 78 (1543 views)
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Yet... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
As for the epic quality of the movies, I agree that the original story is more intimate than epic and changes had to be made to it to make it bigger. That, I have always believed, was inevitable given the expectations and requirements of the LotR movie fanbase and the studios funding the production. Also, movie Hobbit had to match the Middle-earth created in its predecessors. There was no going back after the LotR films and a small, more literal adaptation of TH was never going to happen. Myself, I was happy with the larger, more complex and detailed world that we saw in TH movies.


That was precisely why the movies failed. Instead of "epic" what they got was "bloated" and "silly"- like a supermarket turkey that's 2/3 water and hormones. It didn't help that all the artificial epic-ness was concocted out of whole cloth, by writers who weren't up to the task.


Noria
Gondor

Jan 27, 1:32pm

Post #40 of 78 (1485 views)
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LOL [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
That was precisely why the movies failed. Instead of "epic" what they got was "bloated" and "silly"- like a supermarket turkey that's 2/3 water and hormones. It didn't help that all the artificial epic-ness was concocted out of whole cloth, by writers who weren't up to the task.


Since IMO pretty much every word of that post is incorrect, we'll have to agree to disagree.


Noria
Gondor

Jan 27, 1:55pm

Post #41 of 78 (1484 views)
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Can't disagree. [In reply to] Can't Post

Good point that the romance was actually underdeveloped. Maybe it would have worked better otherwise,

Perhaps they should have either developed the romance more fully or left it alone. For those who hate the entire concept, at least as it is the romance takes up very little time and narrative space.

I agree that the conflict between Tauriel and Thranduil works better than it would have between Legolas and his father. And having his attitude changed by Tauriel gives Legolas something else to do beside Orc-slaying.

IMO the movies needed to set up a reason for the animosity between the Wood Elves and the Dwarves of Erebor, not rely on ancient history known only to book fans.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 27, 3:26pm

Post #42 of 78 (1476 views)
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Perhaps so. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
IMO the movies needed to set up a reason for the animosity between the Wood Elves and the Dwarves of Erebor, not rely on ancient history known only to book fans.


That's a fair point, though Thorin's attitude was a bit extreme, extending to all Elves including Elrond's folk, who--when they lived in Eregion--had had a good relationship with the Dwarves of Khazad-dum (Thorin's ancestors).

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jan 27, 3:30pm)


Noria
Gondor

Jan 28, 3:16pm

Post #43 of 78 (1399 views)
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I agree, Thorin's attitude was extreme. [In reply to] Can't Post

Was it ever explicitly stated why Thranduil appeared with an army on the heights above Dale and Erebor as the Dwarves were fleeing Smaug?

I thought that Thranduil was coming to lay siege to Erebor, in order to retrieve his wife’s white gems. I also thought, from Thorin’s words to him, that Thranduil had refused to help the refugees. Hence the former’s extreme animosity towards all Elves, which admittedly was not entirely rational.

All of that is partly why I liked Tauriel and Kili, especially in AUJ. As I said before – two young people reaching past the bigotry and resentment of their elders to form a connection.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 28, 3:55pm

Post #44 of 78 (1401 views)
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Explained? No, I don't think so. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Was it ever explicitly stated why Thranduil appeared with an army on the heights above Dale and Erebor as the Dwarves were fleeing Smaug?

I thought that Thranduil was coming to lay siege to Erebor, in order to retrieve his wife’s white gems. I also thought, from Thorin’s words to him, that Thranduil had refused to help the refugees. Hence the former’s extreme animosity towards all Elves, which admittedly was not entirely rational.

All of that is partly why I liked Tauriel and Kili, especially in AUJ. As I said before – two young people reaching past the bigotry and resentment of their elders to form a connection.


No, I don't think that any explanation was ever given for the presence of Thranduil's army when the Dwarves were fleeing from Smaug's attack. If he had come in support of the Longbeards, one would think he would have arrived long after the attack was over and the Mountain lay empty except for the dragon. Like you, I assume that Thranduil was there to demand the return of his jewels and that Smaug put a major kink into that plan. It might still be that the Elvenking considered coming to the aid of the Dwarves, but felt the risk to his people was too great.

#FidelityToTolkien


Omnigeek
Lorien


Feb 14, 5:13am

Post #45 of 78 (592 views)
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Movie Thorin’s attitude toward Elrond was also non-canon [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To
IMO the movies needed to set up a reason for the animosity between the Wood Elves and the Dwarves of Erebor, not rely on ancient history known only to book fans.


That's a fair point, though Thorin's attitude was a bit extreme, extending to all Elves including Elrond's folk, who--when they lived in Eregion--had had a good relationship with the Dwarves of Khazad-dum (Thorin's ancestors).


Thorin in the book had none of the animosity toward Elrond (or even Elves in general) that movie Thorin displayed. Thorin was your basic proud old man/dwarf fallen on harder times than he’d like to admit. He took offense to Thranduil’s questioning (and compounded that with innate dwarves greed). Movie Thorin hated Elves to the point of unreasoning racism.

Just one more reason my joy at the start of AUJ with the “Good Morning” scene quickly turned to dismay and revulsion as the movies progressed.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Feb 14, 1:49pm

Post #46 of 78 (564 views)
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That is so. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Thorin in the book had none of the animosity toward Elrond (or even Elves in general) that movie Thorin displayed. Thorin was your basic proud old man/dwarf fallen on harder times than he’d like to admit. He took offense to Thranduil’s questioning (and compounded that with innate dwarves greed). Movie Thorin hated Elves to the point of unreasoning racism.

Just one more reason my joy at the start of AUJ with the “Good Morning” scene quickly turned to dismay and revulsion as the movies progressed.


In the book, Thorin did display a bit of a typical dwarven attitude towards Elves ("Dwarves don't get on well with them. Even decent dwarves like Thorin and his friends think them foolish"), but it was far from a deep-rooted animosity. Even Thorin's attitude towards the Elvenking owed more to natural secretiveness, stubbornness and anger over being restrained and interrogated than any racial prejudice, though Tolkien does touch upon hostilities based on his legend of King Thingol and the Necklace of the Dwarves. As we know, the White Gems of Lasgalen and the fate of Thranduil's queen were inventions of the films, though based in part on the earlier legend.

#FidelityToTolkien

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Feb 14, 1:50pm)


ange1e4e5
Gondor

Feb 14, 4:08pm

Post #47 of 78 (553 views)
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I thought that Thorin's dislike of Elves was from a concrete reason in the films. [In reply to] Can't Post

In the first Hobbit film, Thranduil (atop his moose) and his forces show up, and Thorin shouts "Help us!" And Thranduil (to Thorin) seems content to watch the Dwarves flounder.


To quote Thorin in the Desolation of Smaug:


"I would not trust Thranduil, the great king, to honor his word, should the end of all days be upon us! You lack all honor! I have seen how you treat your friends. We came to you once - starving, homeless, seeking your aid. But you turned your back! You turned away from the suffering of my people, and the inferno that destroyed us, ihm rheid ahm rhad al sul!"


It's definitely a darker version of Theoden's "Where was Gondor?!" speech.

I always follow my job through.

(This post was edited by ange1e4e5 on Feb 14, 4:09pm)


Noria
Gondor

Feb 14, 9:07pm

Post #48 of 78 (535 views)
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Yes [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree that Thorin’s antipathy toward Elves in general was both excessive and non-canonical. As angele4e5 stated, it seems that his bitterness is supposed to stem from Thranduil turning away as Smaug attacked Erebor.

Obviously Thorin’s attitude was meant to inject drama and tension into both the Rivendell scenes and the relationship between Thorin and Gandalf, where there is none in the book, and increase the friction between Thorin and Thranduil. In the context of the movies, I think it works for those purposes, though it also makes Thorin seem like more of a jerk.


I still drop by TORN mostly to keep an eye on what's happening with the new Amazon series but, when the main index shows activity in this or the LotR movie forums, I just have to take a look. LOL.


Hasuwandil
Lorien


Feb 15, 8:16am

Post #49 of 78 (496 views)
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East of the Mering Stream [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
It's definitely a darker version of Theoden's "Where was Gondor?!" speech.


Which was itself another Jacksonian interpolation. Theoden knew very well that Gondor had plenty of problems of its own, and also that Rohan had not called for help. No doubt the purpose of the speech was to heighten the audience's anxiety when Aragorn reports to Theoden about the beacons being lit (as well as to contrast the two kings).

Hêlâ Auriwandil, angilô berhtost,
oƀar Middangard mannum gisandid!


Hasuwandil
Lorien


Feb 15, 9:07am

Post #50 of 78 (485 views)
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5,254–5,256 [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Hêlâ Auriwandil, angilô berhtost,
oƀar Middangard mannum gisandid!

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