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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey--the unrepresented audience; or, will someone please think of the children!
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AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jan 23 2013, 11:15pm

Post #26 of 34 (116 views)
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Agreed. [In reply to] Can't Post

At least up until the Bird crap, eye rolling, and excess of snot. All the rest of the things considered I thought fit perfectly as the nods to children that this film absolutely needed to have in order to be entirely true to the spirit of the source novel.

I frankly had thought they would handle Thror's fate a little less graphically than they did.

In Reply To
Children today are more used to spectacle, but they are still children. Sure, there are people who will even take their kids to Saw V, and for me those parents are part of the problem, not the solution to the uncivil society we have at times, but you're right: Many children get to see this film, and the humor is necessary.


"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."


Aragalen the Green
Gondor


Jan 23 2013, 11:24pm

Post #27 of 34 (119 views)
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Agreed [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Quote
At least up until the Bird crap, eye rolling, and excess of snot.

Yes, a little hard for the adults to take. I imagine he smelled pretty bad. Trust me though, kids know about snot!

There it is: dwarves are not heroes, but calculating folk with a great idea of the value of money; some are tricky and treacherous and pretty bad lots; some are not, but are decent enough people like Thorin and Company, if you don't expect too much.


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jan 24 2013, 2:41am

Post #28 of 34 (125 views)
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What excellent insight! [In reply to] Can't Post

And it explains why, after my first viewing, my first words were: "That was FUN!".

I went, expecting to see a familiar Faerie-story with some variations, just as one faerie-story told in different lands will have their own twists and turns. And one must enter the realm of Faerie with a child-like heart; for to those who have "grown up", that land loses its luster, and will no longer reveal its secrets.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"I desired dragons with a profound desire"






AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jan 24 2013, 5:17am

Post #29 of 34 (120 views)
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There is ample deep and abiding truth [In reply to] Can't Post

in what you say here.

In Reply To
And it explains why, after my first viewing, my first words were: "That was FUN!".

I went, expecting to see a familiar Faerie-story with some variations, just as one faerie-story told in different lands will have their own twists and turns. And one must enter the realm of Faerie with a child-like heart; for to those who have "grown up", that land loses its luster, and will no longer reveal its secrets.


"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."


Súlimë
Rivendell


Jan 24 2013, 8:09am

Post #30 of 34 (104 views)
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Me too [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I frankly had thought they would handle Thror's fate a little less graphically than they did.

I had the same thought. The first time I saw it I was secretly thinking "Uh oh. What about the kids watching this?"

Same with one goblin that Gandalf kills.

But then again I think they had already toned it down a lot. (compared to the version in the Appendix, which was just plain disturbing)


Kassandros
Rohan


Jan 24 2013, 1:26pm

Post #31 of 34 (106 views)
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They tried to split the difference, didn't they? [In reply to] Can't Post

The love the version in the appendix and would have preferred a darker and more faithful version of Dwarven history. Especially given how they wanted to build him up, I thought Azog inscribing his name into Thror's head would have been immensely powerful, especially if it were taken out of the context of battle. But yeah, this would be a bit much for kids, and really, The Hobbit as it's written definitely has a lot of kids elements.

I myself don't mind dark adult themes juxtaposed next to whimsy, but many parents would find it too much for their children and many adults, as can be seen, can't stomach the whimsy parts. But that's the source material. You have brutal gore in the history. You have a fun adventure story with lots of kid-friendly elements. And you also have a dark psycho-political drama at the end and a huge battle. Adapting that all for one audience is hard. It seems PJ tried to split the difference and make a movie for everyone. Maybe not all his choices were the best they could have been, but I think it's good to appreciate the massive challenge that was.

all we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us...


Yva
Rivendell


Jan 24 2013, 7:20pm

Post #32 of 34 (84 views)
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Very nice post, [In reply to] Can't Post

I'll just add a few comments.

1. It takes a true master to create a work of art that is universally (ok, almost universally) accepted by audiences of all ages and backgrounds. I daresay that most (or all?) of us here don't really have a problem with embracing our inner child. I still think, though, that there is a difference between childish and childlike. I believe Tolkien would be the first to warn us not to underestimate children in thinking they necessarily need silly humour in order to be entertained. (I'm also not, in any way, implying that you - OP - are in opposition to this view)(plus I haven't got children myself, so it's not like I know what I'm talking about). I enjoy many of the "childlike" scenes - Bag End sequences, Stone Giants (I thought they were simply stunning), Radagast (my only complaint is concerning the length), Ori's burp (part of the character development), escape from the goblin town (thrilling) - yet I think they could have been done with much less over-the-topness and with less childish or unrealistic elements without losing the appeal for the youngest audience.
I know the difference between childish and childlike is very subjective and it's a matter of personal taste but I do wish so very often the difference wasn't so blatant in PJ's movies (I don't mean to sound disrespectful though).

2. This is somethig that doesn't concern most of the posters here but just as a contribution to the discussion: I have already mentioned in another thread (and got subsequently very angry there) that in my country, all HFR, Atmos and most 3D copies of the movie are dubbed, therefore automatically categorized as children or family genre. It's extremely unfortunate, as it automatically creates a huge gap between the adult and young audience, that exact kind of gap that the OP is trying to bridge. My inner child won't help me here no matter how hard I try - I can't watch the movie dubbed. I'm forced to perceive the dubbed version for kids as something inevitably simplified.

3. I haven't got children myself as I mentioned, I would like to know, however, what's their view (or everyone's view, for that matter) of the scene of the dwarves fighting the trolls. The thing is, I felt sorry for the trolls (mind you, I felt equally sorry for the cave troll in FOTR - the poor creature had absolutely no idea what was going on), the dwarves were so brutal, even with no blood appearing... this was perhaps one of the very few scenes in TH where the childlike fairy-tale elements (trolls with funny voices) and realistic elements (dwarves fighting for their lives) didn't mix well at all, in my opinion.


Aragalen the Green
Gondor


Jan 24 2013, 7:38pm

Post #33 of 34 (86 views)
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It is all subjective! [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree, there is a difference between childish and childlike; and it is certainly subjective, with children as well as adults. Someone may see a scene as childish and silly; another may see the same scene as childlike and whimsical.

And no, you are not disrespectful! You are stating your opinion, and I thank you! If you like it, you like it; and if you don't, you don't. I can share my opinions and perhaps try to (gently) persuade, but cannot change anyone's mind if they don't want to.

That is really too bad about the dubbing, it sounds like it doesn't give you much of a choice. Frown

There it is: dwarves are not heroes, but calculating folk with a great idea of the value of money; some are tricky and treacherous and pretty bad lots; some are not, but are decent enough people like Thorin and Company, if you don't expect too much.


Aragalen the Green
Gondor


Jan 27 2013, 4:57pm

Post #34 of 34 (112 views)
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Thank you all for your responses! :) [In reply to] Can't Post

This was very enjoyable to write, and to read all your comments. I am so looking forward to seeing DoS and TaBA, and the further adventures of Thorin and Co., as well as watching Bilbo "grow up" from his rustic beginnings as a sheltered Hobbit from the Shire into a citizen of Middle-earth.

There it is: dwarves are not heroes, but calculating folk with a great idea of the value of money; some are tricky and treacherous and pretty bad lots; some are not, but are decent enough people like Thorin and Company, if you don't expect too much.

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