Wednesday, February 6, 2013
The Hobbit Review
The other day I walked down to the IMAX theatre at the National Air and Space Museum and watched The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. As renderings of The Hobbit go, this one fell flat on me. There were definitely amusing points. There were exciting points. I also really liked the idea of interweaving bits where The Simarillion overlaps The Hobbit in order to add depth and a sense of a larger evil afoot in Middle Earth. Unfortunately, for all the good ideas in the movie, for some reason it just doesn't manage to connect to me the same way the cartoon Hobbits did, or the Peter Jackson Lord of the Rings renderings did (which were truely excellent). I'm at a loss to explain exactly why that was the case, though. I felt like the movie really took it's time getting started. I also started off really liking Radaghast and in the end, I just couldn't take my eyes off the stream of bird poop on his head. I liked how you only saw fleeting glimpses of the dragon. It definitely heightened the mystery of it. I liked how they rendered the dwarven mines and halls. I loved the goblin king and his lair. There's an awful lot to like in that movie. The problem is, emotionally, I just couldn't connect to it. The Hobbit cartoon is one of my all time favorites. It's like comfort food for the soul. I was hoping to find that in this movie as well, and somehow, in spite of all indications that it might have achieved that, it didn't. My hope is that the second film will be better. The pace of things picked up considerably after Bilbo left the village. None the less, I worry that a slow first film doesn't bode well for the rest.