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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A long-expected letdown, 25 Nov 2013
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This review is from: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - Extended Edition [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
A harsh headline, I know.

And we shouldn't really criticize the film for being a mess - a jumble in which good, even important, ideas are mixed in with conspicuously bad ones - because exactly the same can be said of the book. This is just an alternative mess.

But the Jackson Team - or should that be the Walsh & Boyens Team - haven't changed a bit, they're still making the same mistakes. Still adhering to the dictum that if there isn't a "crisis" every five minutes, people will be bored; if a long speech is reproduced without interruption, people will be bored. Still failing to realise that sometimes we'd rather have "unclear" characters than comic caricatures. If the aim of this movie was "to do for dwarfs what Lord Of The Rings did for elves", it failed. If you didn't like the way they rewrote Gimli - brace yourself for Doc, Dopey, Sneezy and Bashful...or the equivalents thereof! Where did the Tolkien sensibility disappear to?

After that it's all-too-pat for them to have characterized Radagast as Middle-Earth's answer to Dr Snuggles (but what else could they do with Sylvester McCoy on the payroll) - or that the Goblin King was made into a camp pantomime villain (voiced by Barry Humphries).

Still, AT LEAST they bring Rivendell and its inhabitants into line with the LOTR vision (so we don't have to sit through the tra-la-la-lally song, although they import something inappropriate from The Fellowship... into the extended edition).

And by adding a White Council meeting to the extended edition they almost make up for the decimation of the council scene in LOTR. It also allows them to allude to the LOTR Appendices and to the Silmarillion. At other times there are glimpses of ideas from Unfinished Tales and from the abandoned mid-'60s rewrite of The Hobbit - even though they were legally forbidden from quoting these sources directly.

But still - it's just not quite good enough, those lapses of taste are hard to overlook.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 25 Nov 2013 17:12:23 GMT
Hydra says:
I think you forgot to say this is just your opinion - many people love this film, including me. If you bothered to view the more than 9 hours of Appendices included with the EE, you might see the love, creativity and sheer talent that went into the production. Shame you cannot appreciate it. Oh well, can't win them all, I suppose.

Posted on 28 Nov 2013 22:45:00 GMT
JD says:
Well, the problem for most critics was that there WASN'T a crisis every five minutes and they complained about the Bag End opening and thought it very boring. (I loved it actually.) The book has a long opening (as in the film) and then a crisis per chapter (as in the film). What's Jackson done that's so different?

And the dwarves? In the book, the only way to distinguish them is by the colour of their hoods: they are 2D garden gnomes. Jackson and the actors have tried hard between them to distinguish each dwarf through elaborate costumes and characterisation.

And you're cherry-picking. YOU liked the White Council but not Radagast. YOU liked the way that the elves were changed from the book. In all these cases, I have seen the reverse opinion.

As Hydra says: watch the Appendices. After that, how can anyone doubt the thought and effort that went into this film, not to mention the blood sweat and tears from every actor and extra?
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