I saw “The Hobbit” movie this past Sunday, as did one of my friends. Rachael and I are both huge Tolkien fans, so we decided that it would be fun to both post about our thoughts on the movie. Click here to check out her blog – it should be fun comparing our posts. This is my attempt at a movie review – complete with pictures. *SPOILER ALERT!* There will be lots of spoilers in this post, so if you haven’t read/watched the movie yet, don’t read this post, just saying. You have been warned.
First off, I was uber excited to see the movie. I absolutely love the Lord of the Rings, and all the behind the scenes footage to go with it. I own five Lord of the Rings posters, the extended edition movies with all the appendices and behind the scenes footage on both DVD and Blu-Ray, a book about Tolkien’s world, all of the LOTR books, and have at three LOTR ringtones on my phone. Yeah, I’m pretty sure you didn’t know how much of a nerd I really am. Well, now you know. I have also included LOTR references in my novel, and a day doesn’t go by without me saying something that alludes to Gollum. Then, when I hear people mention LOTR, it just lights up my day.
So. You can imagine how excited I was to see the Hobbit. I read the book summer of 2010, and LOVED it. I read it in one week, which is pretty good for me, considering I’m not *that* fast of a reader, and I don’t have all that much time to read. However, it was summer, so it allotted me more time. Anyways – great book.
The movie was… *drumroll* good.
*Gasp!* What? I didn’t use “amazing,” “wonderful,” “fascinating,” or “awesome”? Nope. But it was good.
I think the absolute best thing about it was the humor. This movie is brimming with humor. It is very lighthearted – much more than the LOTR.
Second best thing are the actors. I think Peter Jackson did an excellent job choosing actors. Martin Freeman was a spectacular Bilbo. He is SO talented, and totally made the movie. For me, a good actor means an expressive face (to speak volumes when the speaker is silent), an ability to change voice inflection, and the ability to portray feeling and emotions without excessive dialogue, whether in acting or expressions. Martin Freeman had it! He was SO funny and there were several times when he wasn’t saying anything at all, but had me bursting at the seams with laughter.
Who else did I really like? Thorin. Richard Armitage did an excellent job as Thorin. I am slightly partial – North and South is one of my favorites, and he plays Mr. Thornton there. Still, he was an amazing Thorin. You could totally see his emotions, and he was a real character. In the book, he was a pretty snobby character, but in the movie you could see his inner sensitivity. His main goal was to honor his father and grandfather, and give his people back their home. I really liked how Peter Jackson improved on his character.
Also, I loved the dwarves. That is something that I liked better in the movie than in the book. When I read the story, I had this image of a bunch of weird, fat, and hairy short creatures bumbling around with Bilbo. The movie totally changed that image for me! It made me realize that I really like the dwarves. They were brilliantly portrayed. All of the characters in this movie had such depth and reality.
Third best thing about this movie: the soundtrack. Oh my goodness. This soundtrack just…grabs you. I don’t know what it is, but I have a weakness for deep instrumental and vocal music – and this soundtrack is definitely that. The vocals are incredible; the instruments superb. It drives the movie, and makes you feel the emotions. I especially love Thorin’s song (Misty Mountains? Not sure of the name.) – it is so rich, mystical, and enthralling. I think that is the same song that plays in the credits, and it was stuck in my head for the rest of the day – in a good way. I enjoyed every moment of remembering it.
So, main good things about this movie (for me, anyway) are: the characters, actors, humor, and music. Brava, Peter Jackson! Those key points made the movie extremely enjoyable. Oh, and the visual effects were stunning, and the landscapes were breathtaking. Those definitely earned brownie points with me. 🙂
Onto the not-so-good things. Now granted, it has been two years since I read the book, but I don’t remember anything about the Witch King in the Hobbit. I was talking with Rachael, and realized that the Witch King was from the beginning of the Fellowship of the Ring. So I guess that’s one of the things PJ decided to add in.
Also, this movie seemed to have more dark magic in it than LOTR. The Fellowship of the Ring has the most of all dark magic in it, and that’s just with the Ringwraiths. But this…I didn’t really understand the point of putting it in. Still, it wasn’t overwhelming or anything, and it didn’t last for all that long – it was just surprising and seemed a little out of place.
I’ve been told that Saruman did have a brief appearance in the Hobbit book, so his appearance in the film only seems natural, but once again, the twist PJ put on it was a bit surprising. I didn’t expect Saruman to be there, and I couldn’t figure out if he was already turning evil, or if he was still good. In the end, though, I think it was a perfectly fine addition for the movie, and added a bit more depth to the story. However, Galadriel is another story. Her purpose there was…what? She was absolutely beautiful but…she didn’t really seem to play much of a part. Who knows, maybe Peter Jackson has plans for her to have more relevance later on in the trilogy.
Now comes my main issue with the movie: the Pale Orc. This was soooo not in the book. It was a little bit disturbing. The orcs in The Hobbit don’t look anything like the orcs in the LOTR, but I’m guessing PJ had a reason for making them look different, so I’m not going to pick a fight there. But adding in a Pale Orc? This orc that had his hand cut off by Thorin, and then decides to jam a stick through his arm to substitute for his missing extremity? The orc that has super-orc powers and seemingly consults dark magic? I think that was a bit of a stretch, and I think I would have enjoyed the film a bit more if he wasn’t in it. I have to admit, it was interesting how it added depth to Thorin’s character – so in that way, it was okay…but I think there *may* have been a way to do that with orcs in general instead of creating a “Pale Orc.”
That’s pretty much all that I didn’t enjoy about the film. Considering that it was almost three hours long, I would say that’s not too bad, and I can easily deal with it. It was very much so worth it to see all the rest of the movie. Oh, but the ending…the ending…. All I can say about the ending is that it is way too long until Part 2 and 3 come out. It leaves the audience hanging…and I really want to see the rest of the story – even with the minor downfalls! And…I was really hoping to see Legolas in this movie, but I guess I will just have to wait for Part 2.
So, all in all, it was a good movie. I didn’t come out of it thinking, “That was AMAZING!” like I did with the Dark Knight Rises, or even that it-was-so-awesome-I-can’t-wait-to-see-it-again. I came out thinking that it was good, but perhaps not as good as I was hoping for, or expecting. It was funny and entertaining. The actors were phenomenal, and the music was enthralling. It was overall a satisfactory movie. Oh, and I forgot to mention this earlier, but I absolutely LOVED Gollum! He was incredible in this movie. His self-conflict was so entertaining. If I loved Gollum in the Lord of the Rings, I loved him even more in The Hobbit. 😀
I’d like to know, if you have seen the Hobbit movie, or when you do see it, what do you think of it?