Sign in to follow this  
JackFetch

The Hobbit

Recommended Posts

See now, I think Lord of the Rings is damn near perfect the way it is in its extended edition form. Hell, I actually like the slower pace of the extended cuts because it lets the movies "breathe" more. King Kong was kind of messy, but I tend to think that that's more the exception than the rule. After all, spectacle was apparently Jackson's main goal with that movie. Quite literally, he said that he wanted his version to be a visual upgrade to the original. So I don't think Hobbit is in the same place as KK.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't mind the bloat in LOTR because its a fairly rich universe, but Will's right about it becoming a symptom of Jackson's work. It's not that King Kong wasn't any good, it's just that there's a huge green screen chunk of a George Lucas movie stuck in the middle for some reason. Take the first hour and the last and it's actually fun!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't mind the bloat in LOTR because its a fairly rich universe, but Will's right about it becoming a symptom of Jackson's work. It's not that King Kong wasn't any good, it's just that there's a huge green screen chunk of a George Lucas movie stuck in the middle for some reason. Take the first hour and the last and it's actually fun!

This. The 1933 King Kong was a hour and a half. The 2005 King Kong was twice that length. Jackson has developed a tendency towards bloat that seriously hampers some of his work. The Extended Editions of LOTR are, to my mind, one of the extremely rare examples of a longer cut improving a movie, but I was very doubtful that The Hobbit could support two movies, let alone three. It's really not a terribly intricate book.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, I would be curious (not that it matters in the end) how much of this decision lay with Jackson and how much with New Line. The original trilogy took in three billion dollars. They would be insane (and fiscally irresponsible) not to capitalize on that as best they can.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ditto. While I'm going to be seeing it in standard 2-D with my best mates opening day, I will be seeing it in the 48 FPS version as well. Well, unless the film sucks that is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ditto. While I'm going to be seeing it in standard 2-D with my best mates opening day, I will be seeing it in the 48 FPS version as well. Well, unless the film sucks that is.

Ditto.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Longer post to come, but dear fucking Christ someone needs to override Jackson and do some damn editing on this. Cause, the bones of a good movie are in there. It's just bloated all to hell.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Saw it tonight. Maybe it was the large bowl of stew I had beforehand, maybe it was the two glasses of wine, but I fell asleep during this. Literally. For like 20 minutes. Somewhere between a meeting and one of the 15 times that Gandalf tells everyone to "Run you fools" like he's trying to sell t-shirts of his catchphrase. It is significantly more goofy than the Lord of the Rings which is fine because that's true to the book, but putting these film series in this order doesn't help the Hobbit one bit. Plus all the cameos of characters definitely make this feel more like an appendage than a great story in its own right, its constantly nudging you and saying "hey, remember this guy, forshadowing etc". It sets up three or four new villains to carry the trilogy, seeming to understand that the dragon isn't enough. Really it's just a series of random barely connected events that just happen. Oh and just like I thought, it took FOREVER to get out of the shire. And the action is half Lotr, half The Mummy, there's a lot of computer game convenience going on throughout this.

It was ok I guess, but not a patch on the first trilogy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All right, time to dissect this.

The good:

-Martin Freeman makes an excellent Bilbo.

-The dwarf songs were awesome and especially chilling in some places! This is a very good thing, especially on Misty Mountains!

-Gollum looks even more amazing, and Serkis absolutely kills the riddle game.

-The framing device of Bilbo telling Frodo his full story is pretty solid, though there are a few niggling things that could've been easily recontextualized

-The previews of the two big bads (though, I'll get more into that) have me excited for the next movie.

-Everything is very pretty (saw it in 2D, what I'm pretty sure was normal framerate)

-The Dwarves that got names, personalities, and screen time were great fun.

-Radagast, for the most part, was fun to see onscreen (go Sylvester McCoy!)

The bad:

-Holy fuck, this felt like the extended edition of the extended edition. There is SO MUCH that could have been cut, or left for a special edition, that honestly, if there is an extended edition, I will be genuinely surprised.

-Recontextualization. There is so much that could've been so much better done here in other places in the film (or in another film entirely!) that it made me want to scream at the screen a few times. That's a bad thing. For example: the bit at the beginning where Bilbo tells us the history of the dwarves, and then cuts to the present at Bag End? Have THORIN, or the other dwarves tell that, and you instantly get more emotion and more of a sense of urgency! And that bit where they're blatantly tying it to the beginning of Fellowship with Frodo going off into the woods? Put that at the very end of the last movie! Good way to close that one off, and tie it directly into the original trilogy!

-The appendix material. I know that we are going to get a payoff somewhere with the Necromancer, and lord knows Radagast was good for some laughs, but some of that just dragged the entire film down to the point that I almost groaned out loud when it cut to another bit of Gandalf and Galadriel almost giving each other fuck me eyes.

-Amping up some villains/bit parts. Can someone please tell me what the point of the Pale Orc and the cancertastic Goblin King was, other than to pad the movie by another 20 minutes or so? And don't tell me it's to have antagonists, Bilbo and the Dwarves already provide enough antagonistic tension, and the Elves and Dwarves do too, though not for any particular reason.

-Again, Jackson has issues with ending a film. There's two or three places in the last half hour that were false starts for the end, and it was kind of frustrating. Save Bilbo's big character growth speech for when Thorin comes to accept him. Though, ending with that shot of Smaug's eye? Classic.

-I would've loved to see more of our two big bads, though. There's jsut enough to make them vaguely threatening, but not an actual thing I'm thinking about for most of the film.

-The blatant fucking pandering. The moments where the characters are all but winking at the screen saying see? Remember that this is gonna happen soon? Isn't it gonna be awesome? Huh? Huh? Huuuuuuh? made me want to throw something at the screen.

It almost feels like Jackson was afraid to let this movie stand on its own two feet. The bones of a very, very good movie are in here. But Jackson was so determined to add little bits and baubles that it drags the rest of the film down.

So, this is the lesson I took out of this movie:

Elves and Wizards are massive dicks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Holy fuck, this felt like the extended edition of the extended edition. There is SO MUCH that could have been cut, or left for a special edition, that honestly, if there is an extended edition, I will be genuinely surprised.

I think that's the reason it was split into three films: they wanted to get EVERYTHING into the theater. Honestly, that was a huge problem for LOTR because they weren't able to get major events into the theatrical cut of ROTK (Saruman's death, the pirates, the Mouth of Sauron, the Palantír, etc), and the first two films have some major story flow problems because of the forced butchering of the completed story. There's a reason that when LOTR comes back to the theater, it's always the extended cuts.

With The Hobbit, it seems like Jackson is treating the movies more like visual adaptations of the books, choosing to sacrifice storytelling conciseness for maximum inclusion. I'm enough of a Tolkien fan to appreciate that idea, even if the narrative flow irked me quite a bit.

Can someone please tell me what the point of the Pale Orc and the cancertastic Goblin King was, other than to pad the movie by another 20 minutes or so? And don't tell me it's to have antagonists, Bilbo and the Dwarves already provide enough antagonistic tension, and the Elves and Dwarves do too, though not for any particular reason.

It personalizes the forces of evil that have wronged the dwarves, and gives Thorin an actual villain to go up against and triumph over. Really, aside from the Necromancer (who doesn't meet the dwarves) and Smaug (who doesn't show up until the end and is more of a monster than a person), there aren't any outstanding villains in The Hobbit whatsoever. Without Azog, the hordes of goblins/orcs/wargs that pursue the dwarves would just be a ton of nameless, faceless bad guys.

Also, the Goblin King was in the book as well. It's not like they added him for no reason.

Again, Jackson has issues with ending a film. There's two or three places in the last half hour that were false starts for the end, and it was kind of frustrating. Save Bilbo's big character growth speech for when Thorin comes to accept him. Though, ending with that shot of Smaug's eye? Classic.

The ending fight scene, along with the Thorin/Bilbo stuff, is what sold it for me as a proper ending. It was one of the few parts that actually felt like the LOTR films, what with the genuine drama in the battle and the camaraderie-filled finish.

Elves and Wizards are massive dicks.

Well, Saruman is, yes, but we knew that. Gandalf is a bit manipulative with Bilbo, too, I suppose, but otherwise he seems to be the one who cares most about doing the right thing.

As for the elves, Thranduil is kind of a dick, but then you can also understand his position. Why would he let his entire army (made up of immortals who don't even have a proper afterlife) perish fighting a dragon when even the dwarves couldn't beat him while they were barricaded inside one of the most defensible fortresses in Middle-earth?

Overall, I liked it. I want to see it again to solidify my thoughts, but I thought it was enjoyable enough. I'm anticipating better stuff from the sequels, mostly because more action actually happens in that part of the book.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This was gorgeous. It's really great to be back in this world again.

I am the first person to say that if a change in the source material makes for a better movie, then by all means change stuff. It's an adaptation. What works on the page doesn't always work on screen. So I don't have an issue with change in general. However, there is no earthly reason a 200-page book can't be turned into a single movie. No reason. None.

Holy fuck, this felt like the extended edition of the extended edition. There is SO MUCH that could have been cut, or left for a special edition, that honestly, if there is an extended edition, I will be genuinely surprised.

I think that's the reason it was split into three films: they wanted to get EVERYTHING into the theater.

No, this was split into three films because New Line and/or Jackson want your $36, not your $12.

They could have easily gotten everything in the book onto the screen and STILL have it be shorter than this was. What the planet of fuck was Radagast doing here? He barely merits a mention in the books but gets a 45-minute subplot here? On a rabbit sled? Seriously? All Hail McCoy, don't get me wrong, but seriously?

As Hannah said, the bones of a SPECTACULAR film are here. Jackson is a wonderful director, but needs a ruthless editor.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.