Original Theatrical Release: December 14, 2012
Director: Peter Jackson
Before Bilbo Baggins’ (Martin Freeman) nephew Frodo (Elijah Wood) ever set his hairy hobbit feet outside the Shire, Bilbo had an adventure of his own, and this was its beginning. Approached by the mysterious wizard, Gandalf the Grey (Ian McKellan), Bilbo is enlisted as a thief and lockpick because of his diminutive size to aid in the reclamation of Erebor for the Dwarven war party that comes crashing into his home. Along the way, Bilbo and his party must overcome great obstacles before reaching the mighty dragon, Smaug.
Okay, so this is a Lord of the Rings/Peter Jackson movie. I had extremely high hopes, and I will tell you that I wasn’t disappointed.
Overall, the film kept me engaged. The visuals were the same great quality I came to know while watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Sweeping vistas, interesting creatures (especially a compelling encounter with Ian McShane as the Goblin King). We also got to see some neat tie-ins to the later movies, and I think when they’re all finished it will all fit together very nicely.
I know some purists will take issue with the content of the film’s story structure. That’s fine, but you must remember that the films and the books are still two separate entities no matter how close they get to the original source material.
The story moved a little bit slow, and I am not sure I liked the comedic aspect of the dwarves very much. Some of the dwarves looked like they were wearing prosthetic face applications while others looked like male models…not sure what the reasoning behind that was. Radagast (Sylvester McCoy) was also maybe a bit too silly, to be taken seriously as well. I know The Hobbit was more of a children’s tale, but it still had a serious heart. The dwarves were actually very unlikable in the film’s opening sequence, to be honest.
As the story unfolds, though, you are swept up in it and I think the coming sequels are going to be worth the wait.
JOE Rating: ★★★★
Movie Trailer For The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey