Review of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug”

So, for my sort-of-first-but-not-really post, I decided to do a review of what I think is probably one of the best movies of 2013/2014. “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” was incredible, so I went into “The Desolation of Smaug” with high expectations. I was not disappointed.

The way the story moved was excellent. I loved how it started gently, easing us into the story, then WHAM! It was right into the thick of things, very unlike the first film in which there was a 45 minute build up to the action. DoS had a much faster pace than the first film did, so even though I read the book, I was on the edge of my seat the entire time! The characters were amazing in this movie. We had come to love them already over the course of the first film, but we came to love them even more here. Bilbo has clearly come a long way from the timid Hobbit that we met in “An Unexpected Journey”, proving his mettle time and time again as this film goes on. Martin Freeman still manages to pull of the silliness, even as we see the potentially dangerous effect that the Ring begins to have on Bilbo. Thorin, brilliantly portrayed by Richard Armitage, once again manages to astound me. Not only did we see his growing respect for Bilbo through the mid-point of the film, we also began to see that the gold-sickness may indeed have begun to affect his mind. The other dwarves were well fleshed out as well, especially Fili, Kili, Bofur, and Balin. Kili especially had development thank to Tauriel, a completely new character who is not found in any of Tolkien’s works. I can see where people might not like this new character, and her romance with Kili. Even I went in determined to hate her! But I soon came to love her dearly, and found the sweet innocence of their relationship endearing. The addition of Legolas was also welcome; as a person who has read the books, it would have been odd knowing that he was from Mirkwood and not seeing him there. It is interesting to see what kind of a person he was before LOTR, and really makes you wonder what happens to change him.

King Thranduil, the spiders… Ok, the entire Mirkwood sequence was brilliant! Dark, terrifying, it was basically one of those rare instances where I wanted to hide under a blanket. Thranduil was exactly as I had imagined him, proud, unrelenting, and pretty the only character that I absolutely hated. The barrel sequence was perfect, down to Bombur’s epic stunt! I was in tears from laughter the whole time, minus that one terrifying moment when Kili was shot! Bard was also exactly how I imagined him to be, and the addition of his family was an excellent way to give us deeper glimpses into this character. The sleazy Master of Laketown and his sidekick Alfred(Who is a lot like Grima Wormtongue), make for a study in bad politics.

The departure of the company, minus four of the dwarves, bothered me at first. But soon I came to appreciate that this gave us a better look into these characters. We find out that Oin is in fact a doctor of sorts, and we see how much Fili and Kili care for each other. Bofur also gets the chance to shine here as he goes to hunt for healing Athelas. The orc attack on Laketown was a very interesting plot point, and Legolas’s intense fight with Bolg was epic. Not to mention the fact that he actually bled! Tauriel staying behind to heal Kili was a nice touch, though I suppose it could have been done differently.

Smaug was indeed Stupendous. Every moment of the film that had him in it was exhilarating. The company’s plan was another cool plot point that wasn’t in the book! Though I do have to wonder how Smaug survived that much molten gold…

The way the film ended was perfect! I was in shock, and now people will HAVE to go see the last one so that they know what happens next! I forgot to mention the excellent side plot of Gandalf’s journey to Dol Goldur, along with Radagast. The big reveal of the Necromancer scared me to death, and now we are left to wonder who will come to save Gandalf.

My one issue with this film was the amount of violence. There were a few times where it seemed more violent than LOTR was, which is saying a lot. Outside of that, I loved everything about this movie. Did Peter Jackson add some things that weren’t in the book? Yes. did he remove anything that was in the book? Not to my memory. Fact is, if the film had been done just like the book, I would not have enjoyed it. Anyone who has read the book should understand why. If you haven’t read the book, DO IT NOW! 😀 I give “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” 4 1/2 out of 5 stars!

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Beth Passburg
    Jan 07, 2014 @ 12:50:13

    So I agree with pretty much every statement in this post..! 😀 ESPECIALLY your point that, if it was exactly like the book, I/people wouldn’t have enjoyed it. People NEED to realize this; I’m just so sick of people complaining about the changes… did you really want it exactly like the book?? Uhm, I don’t think so. As a book, that storyline is amazing… as a movie? Eh not so much. :p

    One thing I didn’t agree with however…Thranduil. I personally loved him. XD Yes he is awful, but like you said, he’s exactly like I imagined him, and idk but for some reason I like him. He cracks me up. ;D

    Great post!! Keep writing pleaseeeee. 😀

    Like

    Reply

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