Last weekend Drew and I watched The Hobbit. I’ll try to review it without sharing spoilers but stop reading now if you don’t know the basic storyline.
The cinematography is breathtaking. Rivendell and The Shire in particular were amazing well done. I felt like I was standing next to the characters as they explored both areas. We didn’t pay extra to see it in 3D so I can’t contrast the two. Just know that the regular screening of it is still lush.
There are a few scenes in The Hobbit where Bilbo talks about how unsuited he is for this quest. He isn’t tall, strong and brave like his companions and his timidity and compassion definitely don’t fit the archetype of a traditional hero.
Someone whose life revolves around books, the food and the company of a few good friends isn’t the first person most of us would pick to take on a dragon. It’s easy to root for a shiny-armoured knight rolling out into battle. Even if few of us can identify with what feels like to swing a sword or walk in full body armour everyone knows knights stand a good chance of surviving fantasy battles.
Nobody expects the same thing from a short, awkward guy who thinks adventures are too long, sweaty and dangerous. I grok this fellow and suspect he’s so beloved because far more people identify with hobbits than with the elves or dwarves. (Sorry, Thranduil!)
Yes, there were some changes made to the story as the original book does not include enough material to flesh out the plots of three movies. While I think everything could have been compressed into one or two movies I was mostly happy with how the new material was integrated with what I was expecting to see. Honestly, though, it’s better to go into The Hobbit without any intention to compare the movie to to the book. As far as I’m concerned they’re two different stories and deciding which one is better is like asking your parents which child they love the most.
The major concern I had with the new material is that some of it is so dark that The Hobbit is no longer appropriate for children. This movie truly earned its PG-13 rating and I would strongly recommend against ignoring this guideline. Even as an 11 or 12-year-old I would have had nightmares from certain battle scenes.
What did you think of The Hobbit?