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57 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better then AUJ EE
This is a far better extended edition then an unexpected journey's one.
Firstly, the design of the box is much better. The golden writing on the front is shiny rather then plain and the detail on the front and back pictures are good. When you take off the sleeve, there are some good pictures of the map of Erebor and Bilbo, Smaug and the Arkenstone.
Secondly, the...
Published 6 months ago by Jacob h

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the first
With a Tolkein adaptation you know exactly what you are getting from Peter Jackson and that is definitely the case here. Lots of wizardy stuff, swordplay (and bow and arrow play), short people, ugly people, monsters, excellent CGI, stunning scenery and that musical score. That said, this is definitely one of the weaker Tolkien installments with the source material being...
Published 17 months ago by tallpete33


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57 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better then AUJ EE, 8 Nov. 2014
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This is a far better extended edition then an unexpected journey's one.
Firstly, the design of the box is much better. The golden writing on the front is shiny rather then plain and the detail on the front and back pictures are good. When you take off the sleeve, there are some good pictures of the map of Erebor and Bilbo, Smaug and the Arkenstone.
Secondly, the extended scenes are worth nearly 27 minutes. AUJ's extended scenes were a mere 13 minutes that did not change the story whatsoever. The best scenes are perhaps the longest. After waking up at Beorn's house, Gandalf and Bilbo introduce themselves to Beorn and the dwarves follow in paris. This is a great scene because in the theatrical cut there was too little of Beorn. The next scene i loved was of more Mirkwood. Here we see the Company crossing the bridge and Thorin trying to kill a deer. The third and probably the best scene that was new is Gandalf meeting thrain (Thorin's dad) in Dol Goldur. Some of the scenes in the theatrical cut of Dol Goldur just had Gandalf, here you have Gandalf and thrain. This is emotional particularly when the scene ends.
Thirdly, the extras are even better. Nine hours of fun film making with some scenes devoted to the Battle of the Five Armies film.
In total, this is an extended edition fit to match the first two lord of the rings extended editions.
BTW, parents dont be pertubed by the 15 rating this has been given. The film itself is a 12 as it says on the actual disc and it is one of the appendices that has a 15 on the disc.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars “Are we there yet?”, 5 Dec. 2014
By 
Squirr-El (The Metropolis, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
It is a long time since I read any of Tolkien’s books, and I came to this having watched the first film, as well as the sequel Lord of the Rings trilogy. If, as with any film, you disregard the original source material and treat it on its own merits, then this is a very good sequel to the first film. The story, expanded in places, but still in keeping with the spirit of the original story, if not the fine detail – I’m sure I remember the Goblins as being less monstrous in the written version – takes us through Mirkwood, on to the Lake village, and finally into Dwarf city ‘under the mountain’. Meanwhile, Gandalf has gone off to investigate the tombs of the Nazgul, and to look into Dol Guldur, where a Shadow is walking…

This is a fast-moving adventure, despite being over two and a half hours long. I kept checking the elapsed time, just in case I was approaching a cliffhanger, only to find there was much more time to go. Note that the end credits take up ten minutes, so adjust your expectations accordingly. It really is an epic story told in an epic way.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars “Are we there yet?”, 16 Nov. 2014
By 
Squirr-El (The Metropolis, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
It is a long time since I read any of Tolkien’s books, and I came to this having watched the first film, as well as the sequel Lord of the Rings trilogy. If, as with any film, you disregard the original source material and treat it on its own merits, then this is a very good sequel to the first film. The story, expanded in places, but still in keeping with the spirit of the original story, if not the fine detail – I’m sure I remember the Goblins as being less monstrous in the written version – takes us through Mirkwood, on to the Lake village, and finally into Dwarf city ‘under the mountain’. Meanwhile, Gandalf has gone off to investigate the tombs of the Nazgul, and to look into Dol Guldur, where a Shadow is walking…

This is a fast-moving adventure, despite being over two and a half hours long. I kept checking the elapsed time, just in case I was approaching a cliffhanger, only to find there was much more time to go. Note that the end credits take up ten minutes, so adjust your expectations accordingly. It really is an epic story told in an epic way.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the first, 20 Dec. 2013
By 
tallpete33 (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
With a Tolkein adaptation you know exactly what you are getting from Peter Jackson and that is definitely the case here. Lots of wizardy stuff, swordplay (and bow and arrow play), short people, ugly people, monsters, excellent CGI, stunning scenery and that musical score. That said, this is definitely one of the weaker Tolkien installments with the source material being stretched too thin here - a two part adaptation for the one volume book would have been more appropriate but you don't need Gandalf's wisdom to work out why the producers wanted a trilogy.

This one didn't really intrigue to be honest. The plot was pretty scant - way too much was made of the excellently produced but slightly silly dragon sequence and the same could be said of the dull injured dwarf storyline. How only one of them got injured in a battle with literally hundreds of Orcs stretched the credibility too far as well. That said, those battles were very well done with one particularly inspired and hilarious moment with the dwarf in the spinning barrel but the spiders were a bit déjà vu I'm afraid.

The other weak point for me is Martin Freeman as the lead. He looks the part but is limited in his acting abilities having peaked in The Office when he embedded Gareth's stapler in jelly. Alongside McKellen, the excellent ex-Spook Richard Armitage (Thorin) and Ken Stott (Balin) in the dwarf gang his limitations become all the more apparent. Elijah Wood was a cracking Frodo but Freeman comes up a bit short (pun intended) as a hobbit IMO.

Overall, a solid three stars and I will go see the third next December so see what the dragon gets up to but this one definitely lacked the scale and story of the previous films for me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Magic fades, 14 May 2015
By 
Ian Andrew Tully (Edinburgh) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This film continues the Hobbit journey, and that's just what it feels like, a continuation with no particular story line of its own. Some of the magic has gone out of the tale, and rather too much of the stylised sword play that is a staple of Chinese movies has crept in. We've not descended into Saturday afternoon matinee territory yet, but it gets perilously close.
The special effects are still great, particularly the dragon, the cinematography first class, but the actors scarcely get a chance to demonstrate their skills.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review on the sound and picture, 8 May 2015
By 
Mr. S. R. Reece "Topcat" (West Midlands England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
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I'm Not writing my review on the movie itself as this is a more personal taste and by now when you buy this you should know whether it's a good or bad movie...I'm reviewing the disc itself and performance....The picture quality was top notch and pin sharp and the soundstaging and steering first class and if you have a sound surround system you will enjoy this very much...It came with the usual UV copy to download...I can reccomend this movie for sound and vision...Cheers
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars an improvement, 7 Mar. 2015
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Though an improvement on the 1st film, it still doesn't grab you like the LOTR did, think this is to do with the fact it's all so familiar now and lost that awe factor.
More entertaining than the last one but still has too many unnecessary characters and a pointless diversion.
Doesn't take away the excellent directing and acting and overall look of the film but
fingers crossed for part 3 - think this would have worked better as 2 films though.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Lord of the Rings: The Prequel. Part two., 13 April 2014
By 
Paul Tapner (poole dorset england) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
The dvd:

Contains the version of the film that was shown at the cinema. Thus you may wish to leave this and not buy it pending the extended edition that will be out later in 2014.

It has the following language and subtitle options:

Languages: English, Italian.

Subtitles: English, Italian.

It begins with no trailers at all, and goes straight into the main menu.

It has three extras:

Two different cinema trailers for the film.

New Zealand: Home of Middle Earth: Part two. A six minute long featurette all about the production and the scenery. With slightly more focus on the latter. This continues things on from part one, which was on the 'Man of Steel' Dvd. For no apparent reason. It contains six minutes worth of stunning scenery, so it's well worth a watch.

The dvd does not, contrary to early information on amazon, contain the usual flyer and code for downloading a UV copy. But if you pre-ordered it in the expectation that it would, then Amazon should have sent you an email by now with a website link and code for such.

That's everything that anyone who has seen the film and wants to know about the product could need to know, so therefore this review can't be classed as anything but helpful. The two people who vote every single review of every single dvd as being unhelpful will probably think otherwise, but that's their problem.

If you haven't seen the film yet:

Then be sure to have watched The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey [DVD] first, because otherwise you might be rather confused as to what's going on.

Even if you've read the book by Professor Tolkien entitled 'The Hobbit' upon which this trilogy of movies is somewhat loosely based.

This version continues on from where said first film left off. And is in the same style. Ie: some bits from the book get in here. Some, such as Beorn's house and Mirkwood go by a bit quickly - which might be a relief to arachnophobes in the case of the latter - others such as Lake-town, the barrels, and Smaug's lair are just the opposite.

Legolas pops up. Along with Tauriel [Evangeline Lilly] an elf lady whom he is rather sweet on. She does a very good accent. He gets to shoot lots of orcs with arrows once again.

As a whole this does start to get into it's stride, and is a better film than the first one as a result. Gandalf gets sidetracked as a way to set certain things up. Once again, this is trying to do what the first trilogy did, so that it will form a good prequel and that in years to come those watching these films for the first time will get something special.

What those who saw the first trilogy think of that approach in the meantime is a matter of opinion.

Some more of the Dwarves do make more of an impression this time, by virtue of the group getting split up. And the comedy double act Dwarves do get more serious. Which is a relief.

Stephen Fry is very good as the mayor of Lake-Town. Luke Evans is very good as Bard the Bowman.

Smaug is a magnificent CGI creation. Superbly voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch.

But as with many big movies these days, the climax is somewhat drawn out, and it doesn't seem to know when to end.

But when it does, it does on a superb cliffhanger.

So I'm looking forward to the third film.

Still not on a par with the first trilogy, but getting better.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars okay, 17 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
Okay. Bit slow, and I don't know why it's called desolation of smaug, it doesn't quite pan out that way.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars WHAT HAS PETER JACKSON DONE?, 22 Dec. 2013
By 
The Movie Guy "Movies from A to Z" (United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
The second installment is in the books as the dwarfs try to regain their home. In this installment we are introduced to a passionate elf named Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly) one of the bright spots of the film. I thought the spiders were more realistic. Tauriel reiterates a basic theme "Are we not part of this world?" When good people stand by, evil wins.

It was interesting to see Legolas (Orlando Bloom) in this film as it establishes his relationship with the dwarfs to create better story continuity. At the same time the continuity is lost as we never have that scene in LOTR when Legolas says to Gimli, "Hey, I met your father." Radagast (Sylvester McCoy) once again appears in the Hobbit, a wizard cut out of LOTR for "brevity." If only we could go back and film it all over.

The film ends at an awkward point. Most people I have talked to claimed this was better than the first installment with more action. I will admit I enjoyed the first feature better, and of all the 5 films released to date, I would rate this as the weakest. Still, if you are going to see the third film, you pretty much need to see this one in spite on any shortcomings. People who are lovers of the book, will find this tale nearly unrecognizable.
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