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TGM
12-17-2014, 07:43 PM
THE HOBBIT: THE BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES

Director: Peter Jackson

imdb (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2310332/?ref_=nv_sr_1)

http://ia.media-imdb.com/images/M/MV5BODAzMDgxMDc1MF5BMl5BanBnXk FtZTgwMTI0OTAzMjE@._V1_SX214_A L_.jpg

TGM
12-17-2014, 07:44 PM
My issues with this are the same as the last Harry Potter movie. It's just an exhausting 2 and a half hour long climax to the previous, vastly superior movie, and pretty much acts as absolute proof that there was no reason that these movies should've been split into three.

Edit: My full thoughts. (http://cwiddop.blogspot.com/2014/12/the-hobbit-battle-of-five-armies.html)

Dukefrukem
12-17-2014, 09:21 PM
Yeh all of the Sauron stuff could be cut out of the first two films, along with Radagast the Brown stuff.

transmogrifier
12-17-2014, 10:12 PM
I'm going to watch this as a sense of duty, but....I can barely remember the previous two installments. I started rewatching the first Hobbit last week, and turned it off once the dwarves started singing in Bilbo's house. I think the Jackson I like is long gone now.

Wryan
12-18-2014, 08:47 PM
This was silly, but I was entertained. Not as strong as I thought the second one was. Jackson's more cornball instincts are on display in a few choice moments that inspire groans. He really, really needs to tamp down the pregnant pauses and pained looks and belabored moments, as they approach parody. The presentation of Thorin's descent into madness would have been just fine letting Armitage do his thing (as I like him and think he does a good job), but it's slathered with some eye-rolling production value (audio and visual). It's not for nothing that the best moments are when he lets the actors work subtly and quietly among themselves. Freeman is great, probably one of the best things to come out of these movies. The battle does go on, but it's punctuated with enough variety to break things up. Shame that Beorn didn't get more to do. Was hoping to see him really fuck shit up. I liked seeing Galadriel show off, even if it did hearken back to the moment that made me squirm the most in the entire original trilogy. Not sure why so many have bitched about the CGI. Looked fine overall to me in IMAX 3D, considering the huge numbers of quite ambitious shots they had to do.

I dunno what to think of Jackson. His sense of humor and playful energy is exactly the thing that has entertained me in so many of his movies, yet it's also something that can drag his worst moments down even farther. What a strange mixture. It'll be interesting watching these in succession in the comfort of home now that they're done, to see if they stand up when experienced together. I never agreed that the first movie dragged out the Bag End introduction. God I loved that; it blew my mind that people kept whining about it. It has to introduce Bilbo and the dwarves and does it very well (and does it like the book describes), setting Thorin on his path while also including humor and song and at least two very excellent conversations (Gandalf trying to inspire Bilbo's adventurous side and Balin trying to convince Thorin to work with what they've already achieved). I loved seeing more of what was going on behind the scenes with Gandalf and Thranduil throughout the first two movies. I thought Tauriel and Kili was handled with surprising grace in the second movie but finished rather mawkishly in the third.

For all the changes, I'm satisfied to have spent more time in Jackson's Middle-Earth. Someone will no doubt edit the three into two or one movie later. It won't be worth doing, I'd argue, as you'd do better starting from scratch, making all new sets of decisions leading in different directions. Trying to carve away what's done won't "fix" it. If Jackson & Co. hadn't fattened up Thorin's story line and improved him from the one-note dick who has a magical deathbed conversion into a good guy, as he is in the book, it would suffer, I think. We also got a terrific bit of wholesale creation in the scene after they open the stone door and first step inside the mountain. That was a lovely moment, one that just wouldn't exist, or have need to exist, without the broadening of the dwarves' story. Balin has several great scenes throughout the trilogy. Bofur and Dwalin, Fili and Kili--they get a good moment or two. Most of it would likely be cut in the mad rush to claw the book out of Jackson's movies. I'd be happy to watch a fan edit, but it wouldn't be the book, even if you perfectly jettison the extra material. I think there's a lot to like in the movies--although the third could have been stronger--but they don't inspire as much affection in me as the LOTR trilogy.

transmogrifier
12-21-2014, 09:46 AM
It's by the slimmest of margins the best of the three, mainly because it stays in one spot finally and lets something actually build, rather than just barreling from point to point. Many have complained about the unnecessary links to LOTR that are absent from the book, but they are the parts that were most interesting to me. Three movies in, I couldn't have cared less about any of the dwarves, and some of Jackson's worst tendencies as a director involve the "madness" of Thorin, including stupid bloody close ups and slowed down speaking. I'm glad it's all over.

Jackson needs a low budget comedy, right now.

Henry Gale
12-21-2014, 09:06 PM
Okaayy, I guess.

I really enjoyed the first two, but I think a lot of the leeway I gave them in terms of their value in the moment and potentially going forward was just how little I remember of reading the book as a kid, and assuming as an inflated trilogy it knew how to properly build to a third piece of a large trilogy more rewarding than this. I mean, we have essentially the same template as the LOTR trilogy, but none of the same stakes or momentum towards as strong a goal for the characters.

It's a lot of instrumentation but not much music. It's technically vibrant and state of the art, but emotionally hollow and visually stagnant. (Seriously, where did this horribly overblown contrast and soft focus come from? It even felt more and more ramped up as it went, leading to the Hobbiton scenes at the end looking atrocious.) And it's just very telling that in the days before I saw it, I felt much more compelled to revisit Jackson's original trilogy rather than refreshing myself on the first two of this, as much as I did enjoy them previously.

It really does feel like Jackson sealing the fate that Viggo Mortensen (and a lot of critics, fans) worried about after Fellowship, that the hordes of CGI fake-ness really leaves nothing tangible to grasp onto. When you have new digital versions of orcs and goblins and other creatures we used to see so plainly and vividly illustrated with gorgeous make-up and costumes now just rendered much less distinguishably running up against other CG dwarves and elves and whoever else, it just looks like a really polished mush even at its best. Even the major battle itself that takes up so much of its runtime seems to resolve completely off screen, and we're left only with ostensibly crushing, more personal death scenes that just don't pack half the punch of those similar to its next chronological chapter. The nuts and bolts of it are tightly sealed and the machine runs as smoothly as ever, but the road its on has nothing new to offer, even when it might really work and even enthrall as you watch it.

Bilbo as the titular character is robbed of almost all agency and importance here. He's our way into this whole story, and he's fittingly rendered unconscious, frustrated or generally indifferent for almost the entire film. Freeman is very good, especially in this one, but it was a weird thing when I found myself wondering how films that utilized him more could've carried so much more personable, emotional weight when I was watching the conclusion of an 8½ hour trilogy called The fucking Hobbit.

Even at its worst (and I'd say of the six Middle Earth big-screen ventures, it easily is), Jackson's inherent crafting of this world still has a bare-minimum level of entertainment that I still find more enticing than more big cinematic universes. So I was still largely entertained, if superficially, with the bright spots along the way helping to blind me from how little else might've actually been there.

So in terms of assessing this trilogy in an arbitrarily punny way, the Journey was clearly better than the destination, and maybe even the Desolation. And now for a rating that seems way more positive than what I wrote here:

*** / 6.3 -- because it is solid, whether or not that's enough after all of this.

Henry Gale
12-21-2014, 11:02 PM
What? Where did my post go? It was kinda massive and was fully there even when I signed out. :(

I know there's some maintenance going on, but I don't know what to do with bugs like this. The auto-restore isn't there considering it went through for at least a time.

EDIT: Now I see it above this post. (???)

Dead & Messed Up
12-22-2014, 09:47 AM
Yeah, sure, I guess, even though it retains everything you probably didn't like about the last two. I did call bullshit when Legolas started running up falling rocks. Legolas has done some stupid shit in this saga, but that just about takes the the taco.

transmogrifier
12-22-2014, 10:54 AM
Yeah, sure, I guess, even though it retains everything you probably didn't like about the last two. I did call bullshit when Legolas started running up falling rocks. Legolas has done some stupid shit in this saga, but that just about takes the the taco.

Jackson just can't help himself, can he? I never had a problem with the elephant thing in LOTR:ROTK or the shield surfing in TTT, but he decided to just keep on pushing it past breaking point. And I wish he had stopped with the "Hobbit Killing Orcs With Rocks" bullshit.

Dukefrukem
12-22-2014, 12:01 PM
What? Where did my post go? It was kinda massive and was fully there even when I signed out. :(

I know there's some maintenance going on, but I don't know what to do with bugs like this. The auto-restore isn't there considering it went through for at least a time.

EDIT: Now I see it above this post. (???)

MC is having cache issues.

Qrazy
12-26-2014, 02:54 AM
This was a piece of shit.

Stay Puft
12-26-2014, 01:50 PM
Why was Dain a CG character? I sort of understand the Orcs but that was just a little much.

I found myself thinking about the Star Wars prequels more than once. Like, way too much. The action scenes were hilariously convoluted and dramatically inept. I can take some individual scenes on their own, in their silly and amusing cartoon hijinks (these are the only HFR action films right now so I'll take what I can get it) but gosh the overall effort on display is embarrassing. I walked out of the theatre empathizing with Christopher Tolkien.

Big shout out though to the giant troll that knocked itself out by performing a charging headbutt to break the city wall. I admired his spirit.

Lazlo
12-26-2014, 03:52 PM
Why was Dain a CG character? I sort of understand the Orcs but that was just a little much.

Pretty sure it was Billy Connelly in heavy dwarf makeup, not digital.

Barty
12-28-2014, 06:29 AM
This was so absolutely terrible. Horrifyingly boring.

There was exactly one great scene in the entire movie..that is when Gandalf sits down next to Bilbo, no dialogue or crazy camera movement, and makes his pipe. The scene in it's simplicity was so refreshing.

MadMan
12-29-2014, 08:54 AM
I enjoyed this movie but I prefer the first two more. I'm not sure second viewings will be kind to this series.

Ivan Drago
01-02-2015, 02:42 AM
Repulsive. Completely and utterly repulsive. And that's just my thoughts on the high frame rate. My thoughts on the movie aren't much better.

Dukefrukem
01-22-2015, 01:48 PM
Wow this was so meh.

Dukefrukem
01-22-2015, 11:57 PM
My reaction is the same as everyone else's: "Meh" - It just kind of exists. I actually really like how it wastes no time picking right up where the middle movie left off- but just as quickly as that conflict is resolved, the next conflict is so... fruitless and pointless it makes watching this movie again feel more like a chore than fun. It's like Jackson forgot everything about what made the first movies so fun- Even the ghostly Nazgūls or Dark Riders- whatever they're called- they scared the shit out of me in the first movies. Here they just kind of exist. Not really threatening. Not scary. Just ghost things that are dispatched easily.

I only count 4 armies. Is the 5th army the animal people?

The action pieces were so ridiculously stupid. How many times is an Orc going to die when he has his arms up in the air - right before landing a deadly blow? The scene with Legolas running up the stones that are falling was the dumbest thing I've seen in these six movies.

Dead & Messed Up
01-23-2015, 03:40 AM
Men of Laketown, Elves, Dwarves, Goblins/Orcs, Eagles.

And as a bonus, bats. Bats that were bred for a single purpose. WAHHHR.

Dukefrukem
01-23-2015, 01:04 PM
Men of Laketown was an army? They didn't do anything. The way I saw it, Azog had two armies.

Grouchy
07-15-2015, 07:03 AM
Yeah, as Tolkien wrote it (http://lotr.wikia.com/wiki/Battle_of_Five_Armies), the fifth army that isn't so apparent is made of Wargs, and is part of Azog's gang. They weren't included in the film, though, so I guess in Jackson's adaptation the fifth army must be the Eagles, although they were also in the book, so... I don't know.

Did anyone notice there was a Simpsons reference in this? How weird is that?

[ETM]
07-15-2015, 07:53 PM
Men of Laketown was an army? They didn't do anything.

Bard is a man of Laketown.

He only killed the bloody dragon.

EvilShoe
07-30-2015, 06:38 PM
I'm watching this now, and this is horrible. At least the end is sight. Why is this something that exists?