Sunday, December 23, 2012

Obsessed Review: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

(Sorry this is a week late, got caught up in exams and Christmas. That's also the explanation for my frequent absences from this blog. My apologies. Now, let's get on with it.)

Really, do you guys need me to tell you to go see this? It's been out for over a week now. Go see it! Immediately! have? Good! Then by now you know that the film is about an elderly Bilbo Baggins (Ian Holm again) writing about the adventure he had when he was younger (aka when he was Martin Freeman) for his young nephew Frodo (yes, Elijah Wood makes a cameo appearance) on the eve of his retirement party (meaning it's just before the beginning of Fellowship of the Ring). The tale he writes is of when Gandalf the Grey (Ian McKellen of course) recruited him to help the Dwarf king Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) and his company take back their ancestral home of Erebor from Smaug, a fire-breathing dragon. Along the way, we meet Radagast the Brown (7th Doctor Sylvester McCoy), see Rivendell again, watch Gandalf and the League of Middle Earth Protectors ( Saurman, Elrod and Galadriel ) talk about an oncoming Necromancer, see Gollum (Andy Serkis) again, meet some trolls, see a battle with Goblins and watch Orcs hunt the party down. Also, there's singing.

This film is great. No, it's not on the level of the LoTR trilogy yet, but I'm sure it can get there. While the scope is a bit smaller than LoTR, it's no less a grand tale with great actors bringing their characters to life. Freeman gives young Bilbo the right amount of acting scared and flummoxed about the journey while still retaining wit enough to survive. McKellen basically is Gandalf again, and Thorin's party all are played by some damn good actors.

What surprised me most was the amount of action in the film. While I haven't read the entire book yet, I know the novel wasn't this action packed. For instance, the party's meeting with the trolls? Let's just say that it was the "rush in and start fighting" scene that was in the film. It really doesn't diminish the the film as the Peter Jackson still directs some of the best action scenes in Hollywood.

The only real problem I have with the film is a weird blurring effect I personally experienced while watching the film. This might be due to the new frame rate Jackson used to film the movie (explained here by Bob Chipman) ,or it could just be me.

Bottom line: GO. SEE. THIS. FILM. NOW.  You won't regret it.

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