27 December, 2012

(movie) Review - The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (or, Why All the Hate?)

There have been lots of thoughts on this movie already, but I felt I needed to add my two cents, because, well, lots of people are just plain wrong.

Okay, maybe people have good reason to be disappointed with The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, but I wanted to tell you why you shouldn't be. 

I think we all had a bit of an inkling that the film version of our beloved book, The Hobbit, wasn't quite going to follow the book precisely when we learned it was going to be two movies. I mean, each of the books in the Lord of the Rings trilogy got one movie and they're all longer than The Hobbit...so logic already started us down this path.

Then we found out it was going to be three movies.

Slight doubt was replaced with actual knowledge. The movie version(s) of The Hobbit was NOT GOING TO FOLLOW THE BOOK exactly.

So, why are so many people coming out of this movie utterly disappointed the movie didn't follow the book? You already knew this going in! There were no expectations to dash in this regard and if you had any expectations, they should have rightfully been dashed weeks if not months before the viewing of this movie.

The Hobbit delivers with orc-slaying, adventure-having, rock-throwing, breath-taking goodness. What's wrong with that?

Now there are few books I reread, there are just too many to go through once, but The Hobbit is one of the rare books I've read twice. It will always have a special place in my heart and I still loved this movie.

I'm not going to say it was completely devoid of fault. Two things irritated me for a time and they were the handling of the troll scene, which was good in its own right, but COMPLETELY different when it could have been kept the same. The other thing was the use of CGI was a bit (okay really) heavy at times especially for the main big baddie. This was still nothing to ruin my enjoyment, we're back in middle earth people!

If you could only have seen my face as I watched The Hobbit. There was literally a smile ear to ear the entire time. I loved it.

I'm pleading with you, manage your expectations. Think of this as Peter Jackson goes to Middle Earth (with possibly the only goal of staying consistent with his earlier films). You'll be much happier.

EDIT: If you would prefer an article that actually uses the expansive Middle Earth source material and you know sources in general (you know, what some may call a credible argument), this one's excellent.


ediFanoB said...

Like you, I really enjoyed The Hobbit. As you said it has been quite clear that there will be more things in the movie than in the books.

It has been great to be back in Middle Earth!

Steven J Pemberton said...

No argument with any of that. I just thought it was half an hour too long (and the 48fps makes it look like a TV movie)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I enjoyed it as well. I knew they were adding things and had no problem with the changes. A very rich and beautiful film.

Mason said...

It's the degree to which it didn't follow that's the problem.

Bryce L. said...

@edi - So great! I had so much fun.

@Steven - To be honest, I could have stayed longer, I really enjoyed it that much. I did the 3D version, I don't know if you did too, but I didn't get that at all about the 48fps.

Bryce L. said...

@Alex - Completely agreed. I really need to visit (or just move to) New Zealand. What an amazing place.

@Mason - That's really my point here. I'm saying, don't expect anything at all. Maybe I should add that it's like all the movies that are "based on a true story" but really only have like one character's name that's the same as a real person's.

Cursed Armada said...

Absolutely loved it! I think I'm the only person who didn't want it to end! Honestly I'm still shocked so many people are bitching about it... Then again I'm team Jackson and not a Tolkien "purist"

Carl V. Anderson said...

I saw the film early today, my second time viewing it. This time I saw it in the 48 FPS version and really liked it. I didn't find it odd or distracting at all. And the film itself held up great to a second viewing. It has problems here and there but so did the LOTR films, which I adore. I don't care about those things, this has the spirit of what Tolkien created and it makes me very pleased with the overall result.