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I loved the move. really, really loved it. Of course, P. Jackson is taking some (a lot of) liberties with the original book (which I have read countless times over the last 20 years).

And I don't care. That movie was brilliant from beginning to end and the fact that Jackson decided to "blend" it with LOTR perfect!

In fact, yesterday I saw it in 2D because I can't stand 3D... and tomorrow I will go watch it again in 3D because it made me curious to see how it would be in 3D and HFR. Yeah, that's the first and only movie that ever did that to me. That might be a good indication on how much I love it.

Oh, I'm no blind fanboy, there are some choices Jackson made that irked me a little (his depiction of Radagast is... well, I won't say a thing), but the most important is that he kept the Epic feeling he had during the LOTR trilogy, making me feel the Hobbit is indeed in the same "universe".
To me, Jackson has perfectly rendered the epic "greek tragedy" feeling Tolkien has put in his books, and that's exactly what I needed in a movie adaptation of that masterpiece.
The Hobbit is nowhere near the disaster some people would make you believe it is. The first hour has its issues, but overall it is well made and fun movie.
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Azilut: *snip*
Well, I loved the Hobbit exactly BECAUSE Jackson added so much epic in it. The escape from Goblintown is exactly that: a way to show us that dwarves ARE epic and that they won't let a mere ten thousands orcs between them and Erebor ^_^

I fact, I deeply believe that Jackson NEEDED to add that epic to the (I agree with you) small-scale story that is The Hobbit. Because he clearly decided to link it with his LOTR. Like it or not, both opinions are understandable, but at least no one can say Jackson is inconsistent. ^_^

I disagree with you on a point: no, Smaug "should not" be the looming threat, simply because in the book he play virtually no role until Bilbo Baggins starts some burglary in his lair. In The Hobbit, it's the journey that is important, not the dragon.

The Necromancer is also very important because it's the beginning of the come back of Sauron. So, as Jackson decided to make LOTR and the Hobbit clearly different moments of the same universe, I think he needed to do that.

But I agree with you: Jackson could have avoided to turn Radagast the Brown into some kind of Jar-Jar goofy comic character...

So, to conclude, at many points the movie made me actually go "F--- YEAH!" inside of my head, which means that tastes may vary! ;)
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xa_chan: I disagree with you on a point: no, Smaug "should not" be the looming threat, simply because in the book he play virtually no role until Bilbo Baggins starts some burglary in his lair. In The Hobbit, it's the journey that is important, not the dragon.
Well, to clarify, I'm not saying that we should be constantly reminded of Smaug. I'm saying that placing so much emphasis on other villains (especially more powerful ones) tends to overshadow him. Imagine if you made a Jack the Ripper movie, but kept referencing the fact that Godzilla is rampaging in the background? As bad as Jack is, he just doesn't seem like such a significant threat when you've got a city-destroying atomic lizard to compare him to. Similarly, having the Necromancer feature so prominently makes Smaug look more like a henchman or an optional side-boss.
Post edited December 28, 2012 by Azilut
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xa_chan: I disagree with you on a point: no, Smaug "should not" be the looming threat, simply because in the book he play virtually no role until Bilbo Baggins starts some burglary in his lair. In The Hobbit, it's the journey that is important, not the dragon.
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Azilut: Well, to clarify, I'm not saying that we should be constantly reminded of Smaug. I'm saying that placing so much emphasis on other villains (especially more powerful ones) tends to overshadow him. Imagine if you made a Jack the Ripper movie, but kept referencing the fact that Godzilla is rampaging in the background? As bad as Jack is, he just doesn't seem like such a significant threat when you've got a city-destroying atomic lizard to compare him to. Similarly, having the Necromancer feature so prominently makes Smaug look more like a henchman or an optional side-boss.
Well, I understand what you mean, but I see that also because in that first movie, where they are Smaug can't do them much harm, so there is a real need for some valuable opponents. I agree, the thing with Azog is a little "too much". Still, I feel it was necessary.

The Necromancer alos is necessary, at least to explain by advance why the dwarves will get caught by giant spiders while they cross Mirkwood. Granted, in the book all tha Necromancer story takes place a little before the journey of Bilbo Baggins, but still, i think that it was necessary in a movie version.
spoilers follow...

what made me laugh most was the "solution to all the group's problems" :) whenever something looked really bad or dramatic, there were only two possible solutions that repeated: either the rest of the dwarves (previously not present or lying on the ground or something) stormed the enemy for a great victory, or Gandalf stepped in with his almighty light :D :D :D I think this situation happened about 5 times during this first movie and was just hilarious ;)

but anyhow, I wasn't bored for a second and the scene in the mines was just epic, so I was satisfied...
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xa_chan: *snip*
So I totally disagree that the movie needed to be made an "epic" to match the style of LOTR.
Though to help make your counter argument here is a blog post about that (which I definitely disagree with): http://dresdencodak.tumblr.com/post/38238171936/where-the-extra-content-in-the-hobbit-came-from

The author of that post is definitely a really good Tolkien scholar, he knows his stuff. But I think that the post is an apology for An Unexpected Journey rather than a real defense of it. He argues that the story which Jackson and co. adapt is less The Hobbit and more The Quest for Erebor, which is a fair argument, if that was was what Jackson and co. were claiming. But by using The Hobbit as the title and draw for people it is both false advertising - and hurts the ability to tell either the story of The Quest for Erebor or The Hobbit. If Jackson wanted to tell the more epic, LOTR-esque (Norse epic, not Greek tragedy actually, xa_chan) The Quest for Erebor he should have done that and gone into that head first rather than attempting to tell both stories and make the mess of both stories that is An Unexpected Journey.
I enjoyed the movie. A bit slow and stretched out at times, but a very fun movie overall. Looking forward to the sequels.
I thought the movie was very good. I even liked it more than the LOTR movies. Martin Freeman and Ian Mccellan were awesome.
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SheBear: *snip*
I'm not saying the movie needed to be made an "epic" by itself. I just say that Jackson needed to make it an epic to match his LOTR, since he decided to reuse Frodo and some elements clearly from the LOTR. Agree or disagree with that, it's a matter of taste. But for the sake of visual and "mood" coherence it was necessary.

The same movie, with the same elements, but with the lighter-hearted tone that is actually the tone of the book, it wouldn't have been right, I think.

Yeah, i know Tolkien drew many of his inspiration from Norse legends, thank you. But I maintain that his tone (in his books) is closer to what an ancient greek author would have written than from the tone of the stories told by skalds.

I haven't read the article you provided me, sorry. Not to be disrespectful to you, but because what i'm talking about here is not nitpicking about this or that detail, but about general tone of the movie.
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xa_chan: I'm not saying the movie needed to be made an "epic" by itself. I just say that Jackson needed to make it an epic to match his LOTR, since he decided to reuse Frodo and some elements clearly from the LOTR. Agree or disagree with that, it's a matter of taste. But for the sake of visual and "mood" coherence it was necessary.

The same movie, with the same elements, but with the lighter-hearted tone that is actually the tone of the book, it wouldn't have been right, I think.

Yeah, i know Tolkien drew many of his inspiration from Norse legends, thank you. But I maintain that his tone (in his books) is closer to what an ancient greek author would have written than from the tone of the stories told by skalds.

I haven't read the article you provided me, sorry. Not to be disrespectful to you, but because what i'm talking about here is not nitpicking about this or that detail, but about general tone of the movie.
Sorry for not explaining the article better. It does, I think, actually address a similar argument you are making: that the movie is an epic because of Jackson and co.'s choices and because it isn't only based on The Hobbit (the author then goes on to explain stuff about The Quest of Erebor, which does have some nitpicking in it).

But anyway...

I disagree that An Unexpected Journey needed to be consistent with the LOTR movies. I think that was actual a huge flaw on the part of Jackson and co. Obviously we disagree on that - that is fine. But I don't think that the movies needed to be matched in the way that they are.

I think that while what Jackson and co. are attempting to do by creating parallels and strong connections between the LOTR and The Hobbit trilogies is to draw people into the large legendarium. And that is a good thing. However, I don't think that the actual execution is well done. And I think that if Jackson wanted to expand on the universe he created (in the LOTR movies) based on Tolkien's work while keeping the same consistincy in style and theme he could have adapted a different story than The Hobbit and done a better job than what is currently shown in the first part of The Hobbit trilogy (in my opinion).

I think that while it maybe have not been possible for him to get the rights to something like The Children of Hurin, or any parts of the Silmarillion that is not an excuse to shoe horn into the story of The Hobbit things that are not the story of The Hobbit proper: and in so doing ruin both stories simultaneously.
All nitpicking aside, having seen it now, any serious fan's complaints about that film should have immediately been washed away by the closing sequence.

That is all.
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orcishgamer: All nitpicking aside, having seen it now, any serious fan's complaints about that film should have immediately been washed away by the closing sequence.

That is all.
A CGI eye opening under a mountain of golden treasure?
Or the lines from Bilbo about why he came back to the dwarves (before the chase scene down the mountain) about home and fighting for a homeland when yours has been taken away from you?
Or the eagles?
Or the pine trees and the orc attack?

Because none of those things made me think that movie was any better.
The riddle scene was awesome
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Coelocanth: *edit* I think I'm actually one of the rare few that seems to like reading a book before seeing a movie. I tend to enjoy movies far better that way. Most others, it seems, like to do it the opposite way. At least from my experience.
I don't think that's rare, a lot of people I know are like you in that regard and I am, too, for two reasons. First and foremost, I'm afraid that watching the movie first would spoil my enjoyment of the book, since the images of the movie are likely to interfere with my own imagination and overshadow the images I'd otherwise try to create myself, if you get my meaning. And second, I feel that in being familiar with the original work I'd be better prepared to judge the movie's merit as an adaptation, to notice where the movie makers got creative with the source material and added to it or changed it, and how they interpret it all, and I find that quite intriguing in itself.

If I read the book first and then watch the movie, it will result in two different 'movies' coexisting in my head and I'll be able to compare my own vision with the vision of the director and film team. If I watch the movie first, I can only judge how entertaining it is and I'll miss out on all the rest, and reading the book afterwards will make it a lot harder to come up with something of my own, the director's vision and the actors' faces will always show through.

As for The Hobbit movie, I agree with much of what was written before me. I didn't think it was boring at all and I enjoyed it, but I also disliked the inconsistency of tone, the attempt to tell two hardly compatible stories at the same time, with the result of Smaug and Bilbo being overshadowed by the greater epic (in between you can easily forget that this was supposed to be Bilbo's story), as well as the overabundance of superfluos action scenes and repetitive deus-ex-machina solutions. And I also agree that Martin Freeman and Ian McKellen were awesome, making the movie a lot of fun to watch, even though I wouldn't consider it a great movie. It's definitely an entertaining one despite its flaws.