21 December 2014


Saw the third Hobbit movie today. Wow was it awful. But not quite bad enough to be comical. Just boring.

Takes real... vision? to make a "Hobbit" trilogy and leave the main character out of the finale. Almost, anyway. The very few scenes with Bilbo actually in them were the highlights of the movie. None of the rest made much sense, including the 15-hour battle scene that my youngest aptly described as "like a 6-yr-old playing with miniatures."

I'm not actually bent out of shape that it differed from the book. I got over that after the first movie. I might be the only viewer who liked the long, slow start of the first movie, where the dwarves eat a lot and have some fun at Bilbo's expense. It kind of went off the rails after that.

I quite liked the second film. I fully accepted it as not at all the book and found it to be pretty fun -- a good adventure.

But this one. No fun at all. Just tedium. And for as long as the battle lasted (i.e. forever), including some interminable individual fight scenes, none of it made much sense.

(I also wondered where all the other mountains came from -- when we were approaching this thing for the previous 6 hours of film, "The Lonely Mountain" was a single mountain surrounded by plains,  but for the final battle, suddenly it was surrounded by additional mountains, including one that had towers and a frozen lake for some reason. Later they go back to drawing it as a solitary mountain in the middle of plains.)

(Also, how tall are orcs supposed to be, actually? Some are 5-ft tall. A few are 8-ft tall. What about trolls? Some are about 10 ft tall. Others are 30 ft tall. Inconsistent scale bothers me. Have a flying squid-orc-wombat-fungus-chicken hybrid monster for all I care, but it shouldn't change size from scene to scene.)

Ok, the forbidden love between elf and dwarf was (unintentionally) comical. Billy Connolly playing a dwarf leader as a Scottish bar brawler was entertaining. I liked his battle pig as well. And his beard. Martin Freeman was great in his 90 seconds of screen time. Not sure if there were any other bright spots.

Although I'd given up on it being in any way an adaptation of the book, the sad thing is that the book is a short and charming little adventure story, with just enough sadness and death at the end to make it a truly good children's tale.

Oh well.


JustJoeP said...

Billy Connolly and his wart hog were hilarious, and strangely invincible, as a melee of orcs slaughtered everyone around them. Not sure where the ram sheep teleported in from, the lack of orc arrows to take out any elves other than the giant ridden elk, nor the fellow mountains who appeared and then disappeared to keep the Lonely Mountain company… only to abandon it.

Jackson and del Toro have never been able to master "scale" very well, and (I think) they expect the movie-goer to be so over-the-top WOWed by their work that they lose all sense of proportionality. Sad that there was no flying squid fungus.. it might have eaten a few of the del Toro generated bats.

zim said...

we watched this last night. miserable piece of crap.

i agree about the orc size(s). i was remarking to Ame that most orcs are meant to be smaller than humans, and it would be lovely to see that, before introducing the gigantic ones. all but 2 of the gigantic seem to be dispatched with ease, even by an amateur fighter like Bilbo (who can also put a massive amount of force behind a thrown rock, i noticed).

i remember reading about the Uruk Hai, way back when. they were impressive when encountered. but if you take the movie chronology, you'd think that by the time the Fellowship encountered Uruk Hai, their response would be, "thank you, finally some reasonably-sized orcs".

two things that drove me crazy:

1. the madness of Thorin. it wasn't nearly as well done as the duality of Gollum (which i found tedious), and i didn't care very much about the character, so i cared less about his torment by the "haunted gold." the scene of him falling through a gold whirlpool, while hearing voices, was just bizarre. it reminded me of those psychedelic Spiderman TV episodes from the late 60s. but boring.

2. the extreme and simple nature of the characters. they are either good or bad, no in-between. (except Thorin, who alternated). the guy from lake town who dressed up as a woman and found some gold -- really? i very much wanted a child to take a hammer to his head and JUST END THE CHARACTER. did we really need that character to yell out, "abandon the cripples"? was i so uncertain of his cowardice that it needed clarification? if you're going to make a character that reprehensible, you must have an infant eat his face.

gah. what a waste.

pyker said...

The more empowered Peter Jackson gets, the dumber the results.