Reviews

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

5

Peter Jackson goes back to the start. This means dwarves…

The year 2012: a good one for archers, Michael Fassbender and swearing bears. Fantasy movies, not so much.
 
Wrath Of The Titans was bigger, more personal and just as dull as its predecessor. John Carter wound up in the red. Mirror Mirror or Snow White & The Huntsman? Hard to say which was grimmer.

But luckily, hope is not lost for fans of lairy dwarves…
 
Back in his wheelhouse after tripping over The Lovely Bones, Peter Jackson’s return to swords, sorcery and beards deserving of their own postcodes is fantasy how it ought to be.
 
True, there’s a sense that we’ve been here and back again before – especially as An Unexpected Journey follows a similar road-map to The Fellowship Of The Ring, with a motley group (13 dwarves, one wizard, one hobbit) questing across perilous lands.
 
But in the tussle between déjà vu and Jackson’s authoritative ability to draw you into richly conceived otherworlds, it’s the latter that emerges champ.
 
Besides, the Kiwi auteur does take risks. Making three films out of three books is one thing; doing the same with one relatively terse volume, something else.
 
In terms of key incidents, AUJ doesn’t burrow too far into Tolkien’s The Lord Of The Rings-predating novel. Yet it rarely feels like Jackson has had the rolling pin out, overstretching the material.
 
Nudging three hours, it moves at an even clip – and that’s with the plot delayed by two prologues.
 
The first is a dazzling shard of backstory that introduces – in blazing glimpses – one of this trilogy’s major foes; the second re-introduces Elijah Wood’s Frodo and Ian Holm’s ageing Bilbo, framing our tale as one passed down to a younger generation.
 
A bedtime story? Tolkien wrote a book for kids, but Jackson hasn’t made a movie for them. This trip to Middle-earth treads a pleasing middle ground between the whimsy on the page and the portent of the later books/earlier films.
 
It’s a delicate balance between, on the one hand, singsongs, camomile tea and cute, ailing  hedgehogs; and on the other, lopped limbs, chilly hints of evils to come and wild-eyed wolf-monsters that get right up in the viewer’s grill thanks to Jackson’s 3D.
 
The director’s first foray into stereoscopy occasionally has a cut-out quality that can pull you out of the alt-world immersion he cultivates so successfully.
 
But it comes into its own with Jackson’s God’s-eye-view camera swooping over, under and through the luxurious landscapes (real and digital).
 
Total Film saw the film in the contentious new 48 frames per second format – yes, it takes a few scenes to adjust to and yes, it’s a bit like watching live TV.
 
But the pay-off is a striking smoothness and sharpness: a helter-skelter tumble into the heart of a mountain, or a breathless battle through goblin territory.
 
Never mind the elaborate action sequences: Jackson has his work cut out for him choreographing 15 protagonists for a spot of supper.
 
It was perhaps to be expected, but not all the dwarves emerge as rounded personalities on this first showing.
 
But still, Ken Stott makes a thoughtful Balin (the snowy-haired one), Stephen Hunter avoids getting slap-stuck as Bombur (the fat one) and there’s an Aragorn-y vibe to Richard Armitage’s Thorin, the leader of the pack who brings brooding focus to the simple but emotive theme of wanting to find a home.
 
For the title character, meanwhile, it’s all about getting off your arse and seeking new horizons.
 
Peter Jackson worked around Martin Freeman’s Sherlock schedule to nab him as Bilbo. You can see why.
 
Elijah Wood’s Frodo may have carried an incalculable burden but he was, frankly, a bit of a whinger. Freeman’s Bilbo likes a moan too, but the part gives the Brit licence to show off his sitcom-honed comic touch.
 
Not that there’s anything showy-offy about his subtlety; as The Office viewers will recall, he’s a master of the deadpan put down (“Is he a great wizard,” he asks Ian McKellen’s once-again grey Gandalf; “or is he like you?”) and makes exasperation seem understated.
 
He also straddles the tone’s comic/dramatic divide. Just when you worry his self-effacing performance is getting lost in the monster mash, along comes the centrepiece confrontation with Gollum (Andy Serkis, showstopping as ever), a game of riddles where Bilbo’s wit and mettle are shaded with genuine anxiety.
 
Freeman’s the all-too-human face of Jackson’s gargantuan vision, his performance indicating that the emotional stakes will keep pace with the ramped-up challenges ahead. “Home is now behind you,” Gandalf counsels Bilbo. “The world is ahead.” Right beside you, little man. 

Verdict:

Charming, spectacular, technically audacious… in short, everything you expect from a Peter Jackson movie. A feeling of familiarity does take hold in places, but this is an epically entertaining first course. 

Film Details

User Reviews

    • Pearceyy96

      Dec 5th 2012, 12:05

      Wow, what a shock! This film could of been awful and you still give it a 5 star review.

      Alert a moderator

    • Jareth64

      Dec 5th 2012, 12:37

      TotalFIlm sell out again! I'd like to say I'm surprised but, really, I'm not. So far on Rotten Tomatoes (a vastly more trustworthy reviews site) from 20 reviews so far it has garnered a 75% rating with the average score being 6.6/10. Everything I've heard so far is that the film is middling. 5/5 indeed.

      Alert a moderator

    • smellyhands

      Dec 5th 2012, 12:40

      I know I havent seen the film yet but the review doesnt seem to reflect the 5 stars it was awarded. I read many other reviews that received similar praise and only gotten as far as the 4 mark. But its Christmas time so to hell with it. I'll still see it and hopefully enjoy it like the first Lord of the Rings.

      Alert a moderator

    • Ali1748

      Dec 5th 2012, 13:17

      From the reviews I've read it seems The Hobbit is good but not great. Empire gave it 4 stars and IGN gave it 7.9/10

      Alert a moderator

    • mosley909

      Dec 5th 2012, 14:01

      really nervous about this film, really want to love it, but you do kind of get the feeling the reporters have been told to give it a good rating, by most of the reviews is comes across as a 3 star film, but really hope im wrong.

      Alert a moderator

    • chickensandwich

      Dec 5th 2012, 14:13

      It's an opinion people! You should read reviews with the author's preferences in mind. A magazine like Total Film is more likely to give a geek friendly movie a high rating and the reviewer obviously enjoyed it. Get off your high horse. Review the film (once you have actually seen it). Don't reveiw the reveiw.

      Alert a moderator

    • TheJoker84

      Dec 5th 2012, 15:10

      Not really surprised by the 5 star review, TF was always going to give it 5 stars. Personally, I couldn't really care less about this film, sure what PJ done with LOTRs was pretty spectacular but this just feels like a cash in on the back of that, that and it looks f*****g boring :)

      Alert a moderator

    • RaveyDaveyGravy

      Dec 5th 2012, 17:33

      Wow, reviewing a review. Ive not seen the film yet, neither have any of you, yet you KNOW TF are making up their 5 star rating "because they have been told to". Personally, I think the reviewer probably enjoyed the film enough to give it an honest rating. Shocker!!

      Alert a moderator

    • smellyhands

      Dec 5th 2012, 18:51

      To be fair, I did claim to not have seen it yet. Or do you think we are Borg?

      Alert a moderator

    • chrnotodd

      Dec 5th 2012, 20:04

      5

      Not because the majority gives average score that everyone has to give. Nice review!

      Alert a moderator

    • barryc

      Dec 5th 2012, 22:48

      People moaning about a review of a film they haven't even seen yet,, pathetic! Or the user Joker84, he claims he couldn't care less about the film, yet he's reading an online review of it and then leaving comments about it, this guy needs to get a life. Personally I'm so excited about goin to see this next week and forming my own opinion

      Alert a moderator

    • djordjecerovic

      Dec 6th 2012, 1:48

      I do not trust total film entirely, but I have read some reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. One of the negative reviews actually compares Tolkien and J.K. Rowling and wishes that the story had a Voldemort like villain and praises HP's approach to magic, in contrast in Tolkiens. I got an aneurism reading that review. And a reviewer like that is allowed to make ITS opinion known and count on rotten tomatoes. A shameful display.

      Alert a moderator

    • jared3710

      Dec 6th 2012, 10:26

      There seems to be alot of frustration concerning Total Films 5 star review of The Hobbit. Alot of frustration from people who HAVEN'T SEEN IT YET!!! You may all end up being correct in your vitrolic response...although I hope not. But a little decorum, please, and let's sample things for ourselves before we burn the editor in effergy

      Alert a moderator

    • avianitriyunita

      Dec 6th 2012, 11:02

      it's good to see a good review for once. I, personally, am a fan on Lord Of The Ring (movies only) , and see this review, it's relieving. Total Film is giving us hope for this movie, that's why TF gave the good review. I saw IMDb and the users rating is 9.2/10. Hint from people who already watched it, read the book first. *sorry for bad english

      Alert a moderator

    • dfooster

      Dec 7th 2012, 8:43

      The frame rate issue is a non issue considering the amount of people who won't even get to see 48 frames. The other negative things are more about the story itself not so much about PJs poor movie making. Yes there are 13 dwarves and other than about 4 or 5 the others did naff all in the book too, this can't be held against the film, the flack pj got for not having Tom bombadill in LOTR imagine if he'd said too many deserves were only having 6 or 7?? The beginning of the book was long and drawn out but you are a long time on the road after 40 minutes of the hobbit hole by the conclusion of film three. The slightly whimsical nature of the characters. Yes well this is the hobbit it isn't LOTR. I think anyone who's read both books is going to appreciate this film and those who think transformers is the holy grail of action movies is going to be shuffling in their seats waiting for the action to start. For 3 hours of your life let your self be absorbed in tolkiens world and stop trying to get to the action and out of the cinema exit. These negatives seem to come from people who feel justified in comparing the hobbit to the LOTR movies when what they should be doing is comparing what's up on screen to the book.

      Alert a moderator

    • puddnhead2

      Dec 8th 2012, 13:41

      Hmm. Noticeably absent from this review is much commentary about pacing. You know, the movie as an actual MOVIE, not just a paen to Tolkien and/or Jackson himself (not necessarily in that order). Instead it dwells on technical achievement & loyalty to the source. I loved reading the Hobbit as a child, many decades ago (sigh). But ... I want to see a MOVIE now, you know, something that tells a STORY, and a taut one at that -- not a slavish (over) adaptation of the Tolkien mileau, what it sounds like this trilogy will be. But I'm glad people like the reviewer who have different priorities can get their fix. I am starting to think/hope, that maybe for people like me, there will be a reverse of what was done with LOTR: it got "extended" cuts when moving to disc, but maybe The Hobbit will get an "abridged" telling that a reasonable person would actually want to watch from beginning to end? Pray hope so. I'd be willing to wait 3 years to see such a (single) film if I knew that might be available at the end. After being initially gung ho about seeing this film this christmas, I am now seriously considering intentionally avoiding it for at least 2 years.

      Alert a moderator

    • patches89

      Dec 10th 2012, 0:01

      5

      I have seen this film today in a preview screening in Leicester Square and I can honestly say that this definately deserves its 5 star review though im surprised it got it considering professional critics dont give good films fair review they can be quite d****ey...great film with good characters cant wait to see it again upon official release

      Alert a moderator

    • agysantos

      Dec 12th 2012, 2:44

      as Adam implied I'm shocked that you able to earn $7328 in one month on the internet. did you look at this page, cloud68dotcom

      Alert a moderator

    • markyates

      Dec 12th 2012, 16:07

      3

      I saw it on Sunday (friend of a critic at critics show, 1.30pm Leicster Sq, London, 3D 48fps). The film has its flaws. A major one is the over-use of digital characters... just because a digital character can do something DOESN't mean it should. The goblin chase has echoes of all that's wrong with the dinosaur stampede, T-rex attack in King Kong. In that people cling to a log that's being shaken like a dog with water on it's back. Here we have the dwarves on a rickety bridge crashing around, falling 100's of metres down a ravine. It's not quite a "nuke the fridge" from Indy 4 but for me it just was OTT. Another is the montain attack - the party are on the "legs" of the mountain as it crashes round. It's these kind of scenes that make the run time feel long - expanding on scenes that are fleeting in the book. There's the bunny sled in the forest, ok. But flying around grassland at 100mph - the effect looked cheap and poor (no interaction with it's background). WETA is not ILM when it comes to selling certain practical special fx (ok, Gollum is amazing). The Goblin King - Barry Humphries, I didn't like him as fully CG. There's also the changes from the book. SPOILERS AHEAD... Bilbo doesn't lose his brass buttons escaping through the cave entrance from guards / the closing door - but in a scene escaping from Gollum. The ending is different Bilbo becomes a hero, rescuing Thorin. But where are Fili and Kili - the young dwarves that are supposed to defend him to the death? Why doesn't Bilbo use the ring at this point? It's all a bit false - Bilbo is not supposed to be a hero until after the spiders and barrels! He is NOT a hero at this point - he escapes up the tree with everyone else. Other than that Gollum, Gandalf, Thorin in particular are outstanding / oscar worthy. Freeman is good but not oscar worthy.

      Alert a moderator

    • mrsweasley

      Dec 13th 2012, 14:22

      5

      As someone who has actually SEEN the movie, I couldn't agree more with this review! I watched it in 48fps (and 3D), and it did take some getting used to, but once I did, it was incredible. A magnificent and stunning film! It absolutely lived up to my expectations!

      Alert a moderator

    • monkiimagic

      Dec 13th 2012, 14:28

      I don't understand how people can be annoyed at a review before they actually see the film for themselves..... very odd... I cannot wait to head back to middle earth and drink in amazing scenery that New Zealand has to offer :)

      Alert a moderator

    • darrengray

      Dec 13th 2012, 14:39

      i think people should just judge a film for them self's the one thing i have never done is gone to see a film by what movie critics say because my view of a film might not be the same, if i like the sound of a film or like the look of a trailer of a film ill see it i ain't going to see a film because someone says its good or not like this film lord of the rings are my fav films so i will see this with an open mind and everyone should do the same then you can judge for yourself if the film is a 5 star film or not

      Alert a moderator

    • SpideyLew

      Dec 13th 2012, 15:04

      Shocker! Coulda told you this film would get 5 stars the day it was announced.

      Alert a moderator

    • SpideyLew

      Dec 13th 2012, 15:10

      The reviewer says... "Back in his wheelhouse after tripping over The Lovely Bones," implying The Lovely Bones was not that great (It was horrible, very very poor, put me to sleep), which if you click the link provided by said reviewer, you will see TF gave TLB 4 stars!... Total contradiction.

      Alert a moderator

    • simster82

      Dec 13th 2012, 19:51

      5

      Didnt bother trusting good or bad reviews, went on my own instinct, went to see it, loved it. Even the insertion of the extra material and the story tweaks didnt hurt it at all. The film flew by and im looking forward to more of the same. Superb film. Not knocking Del Toro but he wouldnt have produced this quality.

      Alert a moderator

    • kamraniftikhar

      Dec 13th 2012, 20:22

      I just came back from viewing and I have to honestly say that I was a bit nervous going to the theater. I was scared that movie wouldn't live up to the hype. But I was totally wrong in my assumptions! It blew me away. It was actually better than expected! Honestly, it feels and plays EXACTLY like Lord of the Rings. If you loved that, you will genuinely come off satisfied. Salute to film makers for keeping the soul of The Lord of the Rings alive. In short, if you were looking for more of The Lord of the Rings, you will be surprised and delighted. If you didn't like those movies before, there is nothing here that will interest you.

      Alert a moderator

    • SiMan

      Dec 13th 2012, 21:51

      5

      Just been to see it and absolutely loved it. If you are a fan of LoTR and understand that the Hobbit has a more adventurous tone to it, rather than Rings' epic feel you should love it too. It was like they never stopped filming the Lord of The Rings. I'm actually glad Del Toro didn't do this one. It maybe would have been interesting to see his take on Middle-Earth, but Jackson has done it perfectly. Don't think i've ever seen a sequel/prequel that captured the look, feel and overall cinematic representation of it's predecessor so well. Howard Shore's score is as brilliant as before, the Dwarves (who i initially had my doubts about) are all brilliant, especially Thorin, and Freeman plays Bilbo perfectly. All of the returning cast are excellent as well. And it is funny in places as well. Again, can only re-iterate that the only reason that someone who loved LoTR would not love this is if they went in expecting it to be exactly the same in terms of it's tone (it is maybe a little more whimsical in nature than LoTR). If they did, then they may give it 4 instead of 5 stars.

      Alert a moderator

    • Lampost

      Dec 14th 2012, 0:16

      2

      Wow, just got back from seeing it and I can't believe how boring it was! I was SO ready to be amazed but I honestly felt myself nodding off a few times. Production-wise, everything was amazing. The visuals are stunningly beautiful and some of the CGI work is fantastically realised. The plot however... is really bad. Is The Hobbit a well-recieved book because the storyline was absolutely awful in this film! A bunch of guys go on a journey and face run-of-the-mill obstacles. That's pretty much it. Maybe it's because I have zero interest in this kind of fantasy (Although I like the LOTR trilogy) but seriousl, how do people find this story interesting? Every situation they were in there was a sudden way out, every time someone was in danger there was a character at the ready to save them, everytime someone was trapped they suddenly found something to help them escape. This is my problem with fantasy, the writers can always just think up ANYTHING to get ANYONE out of ANY situation. I mean, not once did I ever doubt that anything bad would happen to these characters. The only part of the film I will praise is the segment with Gollum. My eyes were glued to the screen for that part. But everything else bored me. There were dwarves/dwarfs with only 1 line in the entire film and the change in Bilbo Baggins happens so quickly it's hard to know if he's the same person at the end of the film. I saw no gradual change in him, just a sudden need for a character to be saved at the end and for Baggins to be that very saviour. Oh and since when does Middle Earth have chips??? Oh, I could go on and on but I'm probably in the 1% that doesn't like it. I'm giving it 2 stars, one for the effort put into the visuals, and the other just for that scene with Gollum. This is just my opinion and review of the film, feel free to disagree.

      Alert a moderator

    • apo1978

      Dec 14th 2012, 1:07

      @ Lampost - Middle Earth has had chips since Sam mentioned them in The Two Towers.

      Alert a moderator

    • JamieTSB

      Dec 14th 2012, 9:39

      A simply stunning film. Very entertaining and extremely loyal to its source material with regards to the main story. The addittions only serve to add more colour to an already rich pallette. The time flew by, and I could easily have watched much much more. Three hours to cover the first 100 pages of the book...I am so excited about what else is to come. Well done Mr. Jackson...please indulge yourself and the fans like this for ever more.

      Alert a moderator

    • spoonlamp

      Dec 14th 2012, 11:08

      I watched the Hobbit, in 3D at higher frame rate. I'm now worried that Jackson may be 'doing a Lucas'. So much padding its unreal. After an hour they're still moping around Bag End. Some ludicrous set pieces. The frame rate is...different - mostly like a made-for-tv film, but with more detail. Really makes the CGI scenes stands out though... Anyhoo. 2hrs and 45 mins? This is self-indulgence in a lavish, "nice to look at way". Think of the ice skating from King Kong - needless (relationship already cemented) but pretty. If you just want more of Middle Earth this will suit you to a tee...

      Alert a moderator

    • jared3710

      Dec 14th 2012, 17:09

      Just got back from seeing it. Thought it was excellent. All the usual high standards of production design, costumes and effects that we would expect. But it's the love of the text and the world Tolkien created that sits it above the "pretenders". I particually loved the way they've weaved in the broader themes. Radaghast's visit to Dol Guldor, the meeting of the White Council and Gandalf's concerns about Trolls and Orcs being abroad. All of it giving us the sense that there could be far bigger things on the horizon...which of course, as we know, there are or rather will be. If I was going to niggle I could perhaps have done without Frodo's cameo and I'm still not 100% sure about the higher frame rate. But I will definately be going to see it again soon so maybe on second viewing those concerns...such that they are...will be alieviated. Oh, and for those who haven't seen it. Gandalf kicks a**e!!! More than he did in The Lord of the Rings.

      Alert a moderator

    • Hadouken76

      Dec 14th 2012, 21:25

      3

      It was alright, there were bits that seemed speeded up, like someone had pressed (1x) on fast forward. that was a little annoying. Might have been the cinemas fault. Anyway it stopped about a third of the way through and it got better. Nice to see Saruman act more like a concerned parent, rather than the big bad fascist he is set to become. Yeah, looking forward to part 2...

      Alert a moderator

    • chrisholmes

      Dec 14th 2012, 22:18

      I gave up trying to read this review, not the most engrossing style of writing. Sorry.

      Alert a moderator

    • Ali1748

      Dec 15th 2012, 18:59

      5

      Absolutely excellent !!! It surpassed my expectations and will easily sit perfectly next to any of the LOTR's.

      Alert a moderator

    • FBJRider

      Dec 18th 2012, 14:12

      5

      Best film of 2012. Does anything else really need saying?

      Alert a moderator

    • barryc

      Dec 20th 2012, 3:44

      5

      Just saw it tonight on a huge Isense screen in 3d with the 48fps,, Absolutely amazing, never had an experience in the cinema like it before. Took a a few minutes to get used to but after that I couldn't get over how great it was,, well done Peter Jackson. I honestly can't believe some of the negativity this movie has received. Haha, f***ing old dinosaur critic's who were probably sceptic about the switch from VHS to DVD, how do some of you people still have jobs?? The story and sense of adventure were wonderful and had the heart and soul from the book,, can't wait for part 2

      Alert a moderator

    • bugmenot

      Dec 21st 2012, 7:57

      I downloaded this movie from moviesfirecom Its awesome movie!

      Alert a moderator

    • charliechee

      Dec 21st 2012, 18:15

      3

      I left the cinema feeling disappointed. I really wanted this movie to be a true and faithful adaptation of the book and it wasn't. That is not to say i didn't enjoy it, it was entertaining and some of the effects where amazing but i think i would like to see it again just not in 3D. Was there something wrong with the original story Mr Jackson? Almost from the beginning of the film he made stupid unnecessary changes and that ruined it for me. In the book Gandalf returns to fetch Bilbo when he is late and tells him of the note on the fireplace that Thorin left, Bilbo does not find his unsigned contract. In the book Bilbo tries to steal a wallet from the trolls to prove he can be a thief, not rescue the horses, that's how he is caught, gandalf rescues them by pretending to be the voice of one of the trolls and they turn to stone. In the film why did the dwarfs and Bilbo sneak out of Rivendel without Gandalf? I could go on but I wont. The Hobbit is one of my all time favorite books so it was always going to be hard to please me. The film does not have the same feel as the LOTR trilogy, they somehow feel a lot more fluid and flowing. The humor in the LOTR trilogy is a lot more subtle where as in The Hobbit it has a more slap stick feel. Saying that The Hobbit as a book is more light hearted, maybe that was hard to portray in the movie.

      Alert a moderator

    • kebabcake

      Dec 25th 2012, 8:41

      Fact! You can read the novel of the hobbit quicker than you'll be able to watch the trilogy! Well done Jackson on raiding your fan's wallets threefold and creating the most unnecessarily drawn out thing since 'Lost'!

      Alert a moderator

    • Chufferstud

      Dec 29th 2012, 22:10

      2

      Just come back from watching it in 3D and words can't express how much I hated it. The 48fps gave it a quality akin to the Syfy channel. There were moments of greatness, Gollum was superb and Ian Mckellan on brilliant form, but from the first minute where Ian Holm seemed to be walking in fast forward, my heart sank. Some scenes were even nauseating with cgi. I hate writing this as I wanted to love it. But it's only an opinion and some people on here loved it. I'm watching LOTR The Return of the King to cleanse me :)

      Alert a moderator

    • gavinmrt

      Jan 1st 2013, 11:15

      As a standalone movie The Hobbit is a good movie but when compared to the LOTR movies it sucks the visuals are fake looking the big orcs and wolves are like cartoons and i watched it in 2D. Peter jackson took years and years to plan and film the LOTR trilogy and it was obviously a labour of love for him in contrast The Hobbit seems rushed and the care and respect is not there. It is not too much of a surprise really as peter jackson always wanted Guillermo del toro to direct and only took the job when the pans labrynth director turned it down that was a sure sign that his heart was never in it from the start. That being said i still enjoyed it.

      Alert a moderator

    • marilyn

      Jan 1st 2013, 12:02

      I recently went to see The Hobbit with my brother for his birthday and we REALLY enjoyed it, though I think it's very different from the LOTR- films ... But there was one never- ending scene (the white council meeting) where I kind of dozed off at one point and woke up 10 minutes later ... I don't think that's what Peter Jackson intended to happen ... ;) Other than that the film was good and particularly Martin Freeman as Bilbo was very entertaining. I did have one thing that bothered me ... I wondered if anyone else had this as well? I was waiting the entire movie for Bilbo to do something great which he didn't really do ...

      Alert a moderator

    • PhillTurner

      Jan 11th 2013, 9:48

      5

      Its awesome dosent give you time to take a breath! A masterpeice and I think better than the Rings trilogy

      Alert a moderator

    • tomevans

      Jan 14th 2013, 21:18

      There is no way that this film deserves 5 stars. Utter bollocks total film you bunch of sell outs.

      Alert a moderator

    • richjones

      Feb 3rd 2013, 0:41

      Good review. This is NOT a bad film, and it's ridiculous the way critics have been climbing over each other to get some attention via slating it. Most fans of the previous LOTR films who haven't grown jaded (it was over 10 years ago) will LOVE this film. Perhaps not on their first viewing, distracted (as many have been) by insanely over-the-top expectations and new technological distractions (just watch it in 2D - I did), but this is a grower. And more than that, it's a genuinely good fantasy yarn, with a big heart. It also contains, ultimately, so much Tolkien-lore-gold to enjoy for anyone who loved the LOTR films, especially the first one ;-)

      Alert a moderator

    • frackasfromer

      Mar 16th 2013, 21:46

      It has nothing to do with professional critics being professional or not. Its just not a good film by any objective measure. It has some good special effects and production, but a good film that does not make. You can't say it wasn't a bad film. The material was never that great to begin with anyways, there is a misplaced reverence for the books that keeps people from critical assessment of the series. They are filled with deus ex machina and other arbitrary nonsense that just prevents any emotional investment in the story. When there are no rules in the world and it just feels arbitrary, all the suspense is lost. You can fall 50 feet and not die in this film, its entirely arbitrary. A lot of the films is just going through the motions of fan service, its empty spectacle, and with the lavish praise for the material much of the time I feel like I'm watching the emperor with no clothes. Its very simple. Peter Jackson has huge conflicts of interest now. I'm sure he built up relationships with many people during the long production of the lord of the rings, these films also support his weta computer graphics production company, in other words he's like george lucas if there were no other game in town. You are seeing a filmmaker with conflicts of interest most do not have, his priority is to keep his machine running, stretching out the films at the cost of story or quality is not a concern to him anymore apparently, he is probably consumed with the every day working of his factory, or he's just learned to rationalize anything to keep his factory fed with fuel as long as possible, its not about the film anymore....

      Alert a moderator

    • Jareth64

      Jul 26th 2013, 12:58

      3

      Finally seen it! It was alright. Obviously if you're a sycophantic fanboy (or a film magazine who's been bribed) you'll rave, but other than that spending 3 hours of boredom interspersed with a bit of action... well, that's just it. They wander about talking, then get into a sticky situation and you wait for them to get out of it. They do. And they all survive these ridiculously dangerous and fraught situations. Really, you're not going to bump any characters off? So it lost its edge as a result. That and the crushing boredom.

      Alert a moderator