Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012) review


This return to Middle-Earth was not only refreshing, but also spectacular overall as a movie. However, it's pacing and tonal shifts steal the majesty away from it.

PLOT:Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) is a hobbit that lives in a small house and usually keeps to himself. However, the great wizard, Gandalf (Ian McKellen), knocks on his door and invites him to go on a great adventure. He, being himself, turns it down. However, Bilbo is bombarded that night by dwarves needing a hand in their journey of recapturing their old kingdom lost years ago to a dragon. After much consideration, Bilbo accepts and they set on to travel to the kingdom. There are many evils that face them along the way though, so it'll be a rough journey. It's a great plot executed brilliantly for the most part.

ACTING:The perfromances in here are fantastic. Martin Freeman plays a great part as the young and wary Bilbo Baggins, as does Ian McKellen as a fantastic Gandalf. The best performances aside from them would be Richard Armitage as the powerful Thorin, Andy Serkis as the mysterious Gollum, Christopher Lee as Saruman, Cate Blanchett as Galadriel, Hugo Weaving as Elrond, Sylvester McCoy as Radagast, Barry Humphries as the Goblin King, and all of the other dwarves with a cool cameo by Elijah Wood as Frodo. There really wasn't a bad performance in the bunch. Everyone did a great job.

SCORE:The score was amazing. The themes were epic and very well-composed by Howard Shore with a haunting song by Richard Armitage and the other dwarves. I really liked it.

EFFECTS:I'd say at least over half of this film was done with special effects. The computerized effects for the trolls, goblins, Gollum, animals, spiders, orcs, and all the rest were dazzling and pleasing to the eye. The make-up effects were pretty awesome too, for Bilbo, the wizards, and the dwarves.

OTHER CONTENT:This trip back to Middle-Earth was definitely pleasing to fans of the franchise, whether of the book or the films. Everything was executed to the best degree and done with epic movie magic that would make you want to see the next installment. However, Peter Jackson has a knack for stretching a film out way longer than it needs to be. The slow pacing in this film takes away from a lot of the majesty it earns as being a great film. What runs through his mind to stretch it out so much, I can't tell, but it makes him money. Also, it was a little uneven to me in some parts. One minute it's epic and dramatic and the next it's easy-going and funny. I felt a great unevenness in some parts and it also stole from the film's greatness. Overall, though, it's still an epic addition to the LOTR franchise.

OVERALL,a great film with a brilliantly-executed plot, fantastic performances, amazing score, dazzling effects, and a great bit of movie magic, but the pacing was too slow and in some parts I found it to be uneven.

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