Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit enjoying his quiet life, is swept into an epic quest by Gandalf the Grey and thirteen dwarves who seek to reclaim the lost Kingdom of Erebor, their mountain home, which was long ago conquered by the dragon Smaug.
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This has to be appreciated separately from LOTR - it's a different story, a different character's journey; to compare them against each other is unfair to both works. I could've done without Ian Holm's introductory voice-over stuff and found the 48fps to be pretty jarring for the most part, but with that said and done, I am beyond happy to be back in Jackson's Middle Earth.
Madly entertaining, great adventurous fun. Lighter generally in tone than the full Lord Of The Rings trilogy. Fast and loose, episodic and jammed to overflowing with wondrous bits of filmmaking. Kick back and enjoy yourself.
I just got back from seeing it. I don't understand why many people are unhappy with it. If you've read both The Hobbit & The Lord of The Rings then you should expect The Hobbit to have a different kind of feel to it than TLOTR. Tolkien wrote the Lord of The Rings for people of all ages while the Hobbit was written mainly as a children's book. So, yeah It isn't The LOTR but it isn't supposed to be.
Peter Jackson's films have become less and less interesting as his budgets have ballooned. This bloated spectacle is tedious, poorly written and wholly unnecessary. These films are now merely marketing campaigns disguised as fantasy adventure tales. The higher frame rate the film was shot in exposes it as being ugly and visually undistinguished. You can see special effects of similar quality in video games.
The movie doesn't properly start until an hour and a half in. Seriously. And then you watch forest hippies performing CPR on squirrels and interchangeable dwarfs throwing plates around until FINALLY you get to the Riddles in the Dark scene, which is awesome, but then there's MORE albino orcs and stuff. It seems to me that it is considered blasphemy to not like The Hobbit, but the movie is beyond unfocused and forced.