Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

The Hobbit is in production as 3 separate films, and will be released 1 year apart, with the first due December 2012. Head in to discuss your thoughts and reactions, and post any questions you might have about these films.

Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Mithfânion » Tue Dec 23, 2014 12:42 pm

This final film was a huge disappointment. I don't even rank it higher than DoS, which means that of the 3 Hobbit films, only Unexpected Journey has pleased me.

Contrary to DoS though, so much is cut from the theatrical edition of BoFA that there is still hope for a much improved extended edition of film 3, and after some recent interviews with Boyens and Jackson, we have a pretty good idea what sort of great stuff will be appearing in the EE. Having said that, there are many things that struck false notes here, and they will not be remedied by the EE.

What I did not like about film 3:

Alfrid- Jackson's Jar-Jar, but even worse. One of their best characters, says the brilliant Phillipa Boyens, she is so pleased with him.
The magnificently boring People of Lake-Town and the enormous amount of screentime they got.
The excessive focus on and the way of displaying Thorin's dragon sickness
Dol Guldur- Galadriel vampire, worse than in FoTR, who would have thought it. Also, Saruman cowers before Sauron and the fight with the Nazgul disappoints
The way Smaug Dies, the made up dialogue and action here is silly.
The way the battle ends, the way Azog and Bolg die, the way none of it makes any sense.
Legolas in general
Hated the absence of Beorn
No idea why they even omitted Thorin's funeral, or Dain's crowning, but it's all confirmed to be in the EE, along with much more of Beorn.
The fact that one old Lake-Town fisherman kills 3 BRED for WAR GUNDABAD ORCS with his fishing rod, and how every dwarf stands for 5 such Gundabad monsters. Ridiculous.
The brevity of the return journey. Jackson did not do the return journey any justice.
I felt the whole battle seemed so unreal and devoid of tension. I wasn't expecting it to feel so flat. Also wished there would have been more side-by-side fighting between Dwarves and Elves, that was sort of the point of it all.
Finally, I thought the appearance of the eagles to be extremely short, I was expecting some more here. Over in a flash.

What I did like:

Smaug's attack on Lake-Town was great, and enough of it as well.
Thorin's farewell speech with Bilbo and Bilbo's reaction to his death was superb.
Balin in general
The design of some of the Trolls, just a shame they were all so useless, seems hard to imagine.
Thranduil was excellent once again, or at least Lee Pace was. I do think they made him far more of an antagonist in this film but on the whole I have really enjoyed Lee Pace's Thranduil. And his magnicent warmoose.

It felt rushed, but at the same time, I did not feel as if I wanted to see much more of this. The film overall feels so poorly handled by Jackson and Boyens that it's hard to see how even a significantly improved EE, containing vital scenes, will help cure what is a deeply malfunctioning film, both as an adaptation, and on its own. Jackson finishes off completely in his style. We'll always wonder what would have happened if Del Toro stayed on ( not that Del Toro is a flawless filmmaker, but it would have been different).
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby portia » Tue Dec 23, 2014 3:22 pm

And that is what makes horse races possible.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Mithfânion » Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:19 pm

RyersonSonOfRyer wrote:About this movie: Does anybody know what happened to the wargs that were supposed to show up in the film???????????
And why wasn't the sky dark and gritty looking like it was supposed to be?????????
And why were the eagles only in there, and beorn as well, for a matter of 10 seconds?????????
And what about the bats showing up for a few seconds with so much build up????????? What happened to the clouds of bats?????????

I thought the day in which the war took place was too bright and it wasn't dark enough. It didn't really FEEL like the battle of five armies.
THIS is what the battle of five armies is supposed to look like:

Image


Well, all valid questions. There was very little of the Eagles in this film, very little.
The bats also had much less of a role than I imagined, one or two quick scenes.
The Wargs were initially filmed to be in the battle, we know this through Entertainment Weekly.
But like so many things, they were completely cut. So you never learn what happens to Azog's White Warg for instance. Or see the army of Wargs.

On another note, what stands out to me is the negative reaction so many people are having to this 3rd film. There is another forum where I post daily and so far there's about 95% of the people who hated this 3rd film even more than the others. In real life, I have also yet to meet a single person who enjoyed it. This thread is the first place I have seen where various people are actually fairly happy with it ( and no judgement on that, I'm just remarking on the overall negative response among general audience that I see personally). I'm sure it does well on Rotten Tomatoes, but that tells me nothing about films anyway.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby RyersonSonOfRyer » Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:37 pm

Mithfânion wrote:
RyersonSonOfRyer wrote:About this movie: Does anybody know what happened to the wargs that were supposed to show up in the film???????????
And why wasn't the sky dark and gritty looking like it was supposed to be?????????
And why were the eagles only in there, and beorn as well, for a matter of 10 seconds?????????
And what about the bats showing up for a few seconds with so much build up????????? What happened to the clouds of bats?????????

I thought the day in which the war took place was too bright and it wasn't dark enough. It didn't really FEEL like the battle of five armies.
THIS is what the battle of five armies is supposed to look like:

Image


Well, all valid questions. There was very little of the Eagles in this film, very little.
The bats also had much less of a role than I imagined, one or two quick scenes.
The Wargs were initially filmed to be in the battle, we know this through Entertainment Weekly.
But like so many things, they were completely cut. So you never learn what happens to Azog's White Warg for instance. Or see the army of Wargs.

On another note, what stands out to me is the negative reaction so many people are having to this 3rd film. There is another forum where I post daily and so far there's about 95% of the people who hated this 3rd film even more than the others. In real life, I have also yet to meet a single person who enjoyed it. This thread is the first place I have seen where various people are actually fairly happy with it ( and no judgement on that, I'm just remarking on the overall negative response among general audience that I see personally). I'm sure it does well on Rotten Tomatoes, but that tells me nothing about films anyway.

What this film needs is a good fan edit. Cut out all the PJ crap
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby darthgandalf99 » Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:52 pm

Mithfânion wrote:This thread is the first place I have seen where various people are actually fairly happy with it ( and no judgement on that, I'm just remarking on the overall negative response among general audience that I see personally). I'm sure it does well on Rotten Tomatoes, but that tells me nothing about films anyway.


The online Tolkien community seems to have responded fairly positively (at least compared to DOS and AUJ), however, from what I can tell the general public is not particularly impressed. RT is not great, and IMDB is showing worse scores than the previous two.

In terms of box office returns (historically a good measure of popularity), still early days, but it seems to be tracking along with AUJ and DOS. The series obviously hasn't lost huge amounts of "fans" but it doesn't seem to have gained any either, there isn't looking to be a "final film frenzy" box office uplift as we saw with the final Harry Potter film, the final film in the Star Wars prequel trilogy or of course ROTK itself.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby darthgandalf99 » Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:56 pm

darthgandalf99 wrote:I probably need to watch it again, but I really am disappointed with Galadriel's visual effects. To me, even when angered and utilising her powers to the full she should still look like a pure and virtuous Calaquendi. Her hair, one of the most beautiful objects in the entire mythos, should not at any point look remotely black and stringy like it's froman early 90's horror flick.

I also thought the Sauron and Nazgul graphic looked a little cheap, as if it had been rushed in the editing room at the last minute - did anyone else think that?

I cannot help but feel PJ had in his mind "anger leads to the dark side" or something when supervising the editing of that scene.


I watched it the second time today and as expected I found the Sauron graphic less jarring and nuclear Galadriel less off putting. I get why they did it, but still wish they would have gone in the opposite direction, all the same.

The film definitely stood up to repeated viewing, although I know it will benefit immensely from the EE. I am somewhat irritated by the loss of the wargs between Dol Guldur and Erebor. This is the missing Easterlings all over again.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby LleuLlewGyffes » Tue Dec 23, 2014 9:38 pm

I quite enjoyed this film, much like I quite enjoyed Dumb and Dumber. I think, finally, that approach to Mr Jackson's films is my best policy; don't expect greatness.
Yet even as I damn with faint praise, I recognise moments of wonder. Bilbo's reaction to Thorin's death is unbearably sad, although ruined by the cut to Tauriel. Mr Jackson's much trumpeted sympathy for the source material is laid bare as false if this is any guide.
There are always scenes that grab the viewer, either positively or negatively. Bilbo with Thorin was the former. Azog with Thorin the latter. I have seen comment about Legolas and the impossible climb as the toppled tower collapses, but that was nothing, for me, compared to Azog's explosive egress from the icy lake.
Was he wearing a jet-pack?
I think that is what I find most annoying. Mr Jackson takes hold of the source material, and rather than pondering how best to bring the Professor's work to screen, he seems to engage in a crazy attempt at oneupmanship; how can he make Tolkien's book "better"?
Answer? He can't and doesn't. Jackson simply exaggerates the book to such a degree, it breaks. Sadly. And he has the feel for dialogue of George Lucas...
But it is over, save the extended edition. And then we can all head West, and diminish.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Lalaith-Elerrina » Tue Dec 23, 2014 11:13 pm

***Spoilers***
I just got back from seeing it. I was disappointed. Mithfânion said a lot of what I felt about the movie and how it fell flat and struck sour notes for me. There were a few bright spots for me, however. One of the few things I did like was the way Bard and his son took down Smaug together. I understand that other people didn't like that part, and I can respect that, but I liked it. I also liked Thorin's end, his words to Bilbo, and Bilbo's reaction to his death. But then it cut to Tauriel weeping over Kili's dead body, and then kissing him, and blubbering about feeling pain at Kili's death, and loving him. I did not like that part, and it really soured the rest of the movie for me. It was not needed to explain why Legolas is so impatient with dwarves in LOTR. I did not watch LOTR thinking, -gosh, why does Legolas hate dwarves so much?- It went without saying that he didn't much like dwarves simply because elves and dwarves just, as a rule, don't like each other. The Kili/Tauriel thing didn't need to happen to explain that. Her saying to Thranduil that his life wasn't more important than someone's who was mortal is a valid point, but for her to say that she loves, in a romantic way, Kili, whom she barely knows, and is of a different species entirely, (elves and mortals ARE the same species, just different races, while dwarves, created by Aule are a different species entirely) really, goes beyond anything I can believe. I would have bought her being very fond of Kili and truly mourning his death, but to be -in love- I find implausible and that hurt my ability to suspend my disbelief. Especially with poor Legolas right there, whom she has known and worked with all her life. I liked the ending with Bilbo coming home, but I wish there was more to it. I understand that there is more coming in the EE, but I don't see how any of that can fix what has already happened.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Linden » Wed Dec 24, 2014 10:21 am

Interesting reactions and I am surprised by the number of disapointed viewers. Perhaps because I have spent my dissapointment on PJ's LotR, have less emotional stake in the Hobbit and have become used to (or know what to expect from) the director's style and the writers take on ME I was able to enjoy all three films. I very much like the Jackson et al depiction of ME - sets, costumes, choice of actors, and feel they hit most of the notes that the Hobbit book intends, so perhaps I can forgive or ignore the excesses and changes/additions that others here cannot. Who knows. At any rate I am pleased to be able to enjoy these films in a way that I could not with LotR.

Many critics seem to agree with the sentiment here in general terms, if not on all specifics. I don't suppose most of us will see another attempt to put Tolkien to film in our lifetimes - its been an interesting ride.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby darthgandalf99 » Wed Dec 24, 2014 1:38 pm

Linden wrote:Many critics seem to agree with the sentiment here in general terms, if not on all specifics. I don't suppose most of us will see another attempt to put Tolkien to film in our lifetimes - its been an interesting ride.


Depends how old you are I guess? For anyone 50 or younger, I would not put money on your latter sentence.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby ManFlesh » Wed Dec 24, 2014 9:46 pm

It was more video game action from film makers who seem more interested in coming up with new "cool" ways to kill orcs than anything else. Actually I take that back. They are equally interested in dwarf-elf romance and in the comedy hijinks of one Alfred Lickspittle (yes that does appear to be his actual name). Bilbo tends to recede into the background. As for Gandalf, he is diminished once again, but that is par for the course in these Jackson movies. Apparently an elf is more capable of going toe-to-toe with Sauron than a Maiar. Beorn? Who was he? Oh, that weird guy who turned into a bear in the second movie? Why did they bother to give him a cameo in this one since he is obviously not important? As for Thranduil, he cares more about recovering a jeweled necklace of unexplained significance than he care about his own son. Why is that? Never mind, apparently it is not important. Jackson's playbook is wearing pretty thin at this point: we got an Alfred character who is a recycled Grima Wormtongue and an orc invasion of Dale that played almost shot-for-shot like the orc invasion of Minas Tirith in ROTK. Too bad these movies could not have been scaled back and handed over to a director who had some interest in capturing the bright spirit of the source material rather than discarding it in favor of his own lesser visions.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Pericles » Fri Dec 26, 2014 1:41 am

I agree broadly with all of Mith's points and particularly the travesty that was Alfrid. He is the personification of Boyens / Jackson's ham-fisted script writing. Such broad brush strokes, no subtlety. Im pretty sure that no human person has ever been like Alfrid in the history of mankind. And if he's unbelievable then I have zero investment in him. And even more ridiculous was that even though he constantly demonstrated how incompetent and selfish he was, he was entrusted time and again with important roles. If the scriptwriters can't be bothered to make their own world make sense in its own context then I can't be bothered to invest in it. I know it sounds nit-picky but it's a good example of what I thought was poor scriptwriting throughout. Just too many eye-roll inducing moments.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Pericles » Fri Dec 26, 2014 2:55 am

darthgandalf99 wrote:
Linden wrote:Many critics seem to agree with the sentiment here in general terms, if not on all specifics. I don't suppose most of us will see another attempt to put Tolkien to film in our lifetimes - its been an interesting ride.


Depends how old you are I guess? For anyone 50 or younger, I would not put money on your latter sentence.


I would be amazed if it was put on film again in the next 50 years. Like or loathe PJ's films, it's fair to say they comprehensively covered the story. I cannot imagine there being the appetite for another LOTR trilogy, even decades to come.

A TV series on the other hand - perhaps. It could be more whimsical, take its time with the story, and offer something genuinely different.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby darthgandalf99 » Fri Dec 26, 2014 4:34 am

Pericles wrote:
darthgandalf99 wrote:
Linden wrote:Many critics seem to agree with the sentiment here in general terms, if not on all specifics. I don't suppose most of us will see another attempt to put Tolkien to film in our lifetimes - its been an interesting ride.


Depends how old you are I guess? For anyone 50 or younger, I would not put money on your latter sentence.


I would be amazed if it was put on film again in the next 50 years. Like or loathe PJ's films, it's fair to say they comprehensively covered the story. I cannot imagine there being the appetite for another LOTR trilogy, even decades to come.

A TV series on the other hand - perhaps. It could be more whimsical, take its time with the story, and offer something genuinely different.


I take completely the opposite view. We are living in the age of remakes and sequels. I would be shocked if we have to wait more than 20 years to see another attempt. I'm not expecting anything as extreme as Spiderman or the Fantastic Four, where we see remakes 11 or 12 years from the original, but certainly 20/25 years from now at most.

I think many take the view that PJ's Hobbit films haven't covered the story of the Hobbit at all, that is the story of Bilbo Baggins' adventure told from Bilbo's point of view. I would pay good money to see a genuine 1 film attempt at that story. You cannot really do a scaled down version of LOTR, but when any action film you put out will gross you a billion dollars, and you can do that three times, it's very tempting for studios to remake films that didn't really need remaking.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Lalaith-Elerrina » Fri Dec 26, 2014 7:23 am

I agree with darthgandalf. That's certainly what I want to believe. With so many remakes, it would be hard to believe it wouldn't be put back into film in the next couple of decades. I hope it is. I would certainly pay to go see what another director could do in telling Bilbo's story, and Frodo's.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Morwenna » Fri Dec 26, 2014 9:29 am

I agree, and I'm sure that another one will happen; I might not live to see it but I'd like to. OTOH, it would be hard to beat some members of both casts.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Mithfânion » Fri Dec 26, 2014 11:58 am

Nilson_The_White wrote:Lots to love and lots to roll my eyes at. My biggest gripe is still Dol Guldur though. I almost wish they had just alluded to this aspect of the mythology, as in the book. Having now seen all three films, this storyline just felt like misplaced fan service rather than creative visual interpretation of the text. Flashing eyes do not do the Necromancer, or Middle Earth, cinematic justice.

The battle felt like they only had the actors in a studio for a few days, which obviously they did. Focus on the three rings! Introduce the phial if she's going to use it! Was Radagast helping Gandalf expel the Necromancer's influence from afar in that brief mumbling scene? What was causing Galadriel's sudden fatigue? Explain these things! The morgul blade meant nothing in the end (EE I presume). The storyline was a chance for the mythology to shine rather than fans having to bring their own knowledge to the scene in the form of assumptions. Gandalf being carted away like a child didn't feel right. Dark Galadriel should have been balanced with some sort of light Galadriel to explain the Necromancer's sway over her. .


These were many of my consderations as well when I watched this and reviewed it when back in the car. The whole scene is so brief, so little is explained, some characters come off rather poorly, and I just cannot believe that this is really what they have been building towards for 3 films. I was incredibly disappointed by Sauron here, he literally didn't do anything at all. Much better in film 2, but all the more disappointing because we've already seen something of him in DoS, and how he just flashes and disappears. The Nazgul looked straight from a video game. The Three Rings have been confirmed for the EE but would have made sense here, as would an explanation of the Phial in her hands, or why she looks like a vampire. This would have been done much better if they had stuck with the concepts shown in the Hobbit Chronicles book, namely Galadriel in light Elvish armour, functioning as a beacon of light gainst Sauron's darkness. This so unfortunate, completely the wrong way to go. Also very disappointed in how they portrayed Gandalf here, in the books he was not defeated at all, and in BoFA he is given no chance to come back and do something, except look longingly at Galadriel and thereby elicit laughter from the audience.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby portia » Fri Dec 26, 2014 2:32 pm

I saw it in IMAX 3D and higher frame rate, etc.

Someone commented that the higher frame rate, and/or the 3D made the screen appear to be a proscenium and that there were real actors, there. I agree. This was especially true during the burning of Laketown, but there were other parts where that realism was present. It was usually where there was a focal character in the foreground and other things were going on behind.
I didn't find the higher frame rate at all a problem and it may have contributed to the realism. Of course, the higher admission was annoying.

At Dol Guldur I didn't like how Galadriel was portrayed as a damsel in distress. Very out of character, though she remedies it a bit by casting out Sauron. Also, I had trouble telling whether the figure in the blazing eye was supposed to be Sauron or the Witch King. Since I do not play video games, I cannot comment on the appearance of the Nine, but I thought an outline was not a good way to show them. If Gandalf was imprisoned, he'd be not in good shape, but he recovered quickly.

I felt the whole Gundabad trip was hardly more than chance to show Legolas and Tauriel together. And there was no point, whatever, to the Sandworms.

I still think the size of the Armies was a poor choice. No matter what Gandalf said, this was not a battle that needed or could afford to use up that many troops.

I thought the battle between Thorin and Azog was good. Thorin had lost the previous battles and could not realistically be expected to win this one, without a trick such as he used.
I didn't disapprove of Legolas' antics as much as usual, as they lightened up the mood a bit.

I am glad I saw the movie in these formats. I thought they were well used.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Lalaith-Elerrina » Fri Dec 26, 2014 5:19 pm

My problem with Alfrid wasn't that he wasn't a plausible character to me, because I have known someone who was almost just exactly like him. I believe people like Alfrid exist. So that wasn't my problem with him, personally. And while I think Bard was wrong to expect work from Alfrid after he showed himself to be unwilling to help, I think it's to Bard's credit that he at least tried to get Alfrid doing something useful. Bard is an honorable person and as such, he assumes that all people have honor in them, somewhere, and he tried to get that spark of honor to wake up in Alfrid. Alfrid obviously doesn't respond to Bard's attempts, but at least Bard tries. My problem with Alfrid is that he is so overpowering, that he blocks out the actual story. He's distracting and annoying beyond what a comic relief ought to be.

I agree about the sandworms. They were completely pointless. There they are, ooh, lookie at their big- mouths, or whatever. And we don't see them again. It was kind of like the cascade of skulls in the EE of RoTK. Very big and noisy, but rather pointless.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby notlistening » Sat Dec 27, 2014 11:50 pm

Just got home from finally seeing The Hobbit: BOTFA and I must say I enjoyed it so much better than the first two. I'd read Tele's review and didn't bother to remain spoiler free from this one as I didn't expect much from this final film. I was pleasantly surprised. Had only 2 cringe moments: the Dune Worms and Legolas jumping on the falling bricks like a Mario game. I tolerated Galadriel going radioactive and the bunny sled.

Smaug was magnificent in his incineration of the town but a little sad that Bard was not told about the "hollow of the left breast" by the thrush. But you can't have everything.

I did like the Laketown resident who wore a hat like Jayne Cobb. That made me laugh. People around me had no idea what I was chuckling about though...

Thorin's death scene with Bilbo had shades of Boromir's death scene with Aragorn and made my shed a tear. And I liked the link between the end to FOTR.

All in all, I would see this film again, for it is now a worthy film for the lead into LOTR that I think can be said: "...in whose mighty company I will not now be ashamed."
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Fell Beasts rule!
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Voronwe_the_Faithful » Mon Dec 29, 2014 10:39 am

I'm glad to hear that you like it, nl!
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby ngaur » Mon Dec 29, 2014 4:22 pm

I probably need to watch it again, but I really am disappointed with Galadriel's visual effects. To me, even when angered and utilising her powers to the full she should still look like a pure and virtuous Calaquendi. Her hair, one of the most beautiful objects in the entire mythos, should not at any point look remotely black and stringy like it's froman early 90's horror flick.


Ha ha. Yeah turns out she didn't need the ring to become a dark terrible Queen after all. She had it in her all along.


A little difficult to follow the fight at Dol Guldur. Why was there just one poor orc left to finish Gandalf? When the wraiths were hit by swords did they take damage or did they just poof and reappear? Would their weapons have harmed Galadriel and the others? Where was Radagast before he came sledding in? In contrast the BoFA was fairly solid. Scene after scene of Dwarves, Elves and brutish ogres beating the snot out of each other. Sure, it ain't Tolkien, but at least you know what you're served.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Lalaith-Elerrina » Tue Dec 30, 2014 6:57 am

After thinking about it logically for a while, I've decided that I don't despise this last film as much as I did at first. There are still things I don't like, like Tauriel and her relation to Kili. I firmly believe that you can't truly love someone (romantically at least) unless you really know them, (and are the same species) and Tauriel and Kili didn't know each other that long (and weren't the same species). You can be attracted to someone in a short time, or you can feel compassion for someone you don't really know, but you can't really be truly in love. Whereas Tauriel had known Legolas her whole life. She was familiar with him and comfortable with him; he wasn't new and exciting like the dwarves, and he really was concerned about Tauriel's safetly, but she pretty much just ignores him there at the end. Granted, she's sad because Kili just died, but she won't even acknowledge Legolas. She addresses everything to Thranduil and doesn't even seem concerned about Legolas. It's like she just takes Legolas for granted because she's so comfortable with him and expects him to be there for her, and doesn't realize how valuable their relationship is (regardless of whether it's romantic or not). And I don't like that. And elf/dwarf thing is both extremely difficult to believe, and it detracts my emotional energy away from Bilbo, whom the story should be focused around.

Also, there were a few other things that I think could have been done better. Alfrid, I still think, was too... there. I don't find his character implausible, but I still feel he detracted from the story more than he should have. Dol Guldur I tolerated. I wondered a lot the same things that you did about that scene, Nguar. Did they poof and just appear somewhere else, or were they really hurt by the battle? Did the good guys actually make any real progress? The sandworms seemed pointless, and I wish there was more of Beorn. I hope he gets more time in the EE.

I am going to give the EE a chance, and try to enjoy it when it comes out.
Last edited by Lalaith-Elerrina on Sat Jan 03, 2015 7:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Steerpike » Tue Dec 30, 2014 8:03 am

I did not like nuclear Galadriel. At least in TFOTR she was imagining herself as a dark queen if she took the Ring. Here, it serves no purpose. It should have been light vs. darkness.

Billy Connolly on a CGI pig just made me have flashbacks to Bored of the Rings.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Lalaith-Elerrina » Wed Dec 31, 2014 9:09 am

I did notice the large amount of CGI critters. Rabbits, Big-horn Sheep, Dain's Pig, Bats. They didn't bother me, I just noticed how many there were.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Lysandros » Fri Jan 02, 2015 9:31 am

A late Festivus airing of grievances. All the negative things said above, I must say, I agree with.

I am trying to decide if this movie is better or worse than ROTK, current cellar-dweller in the franchise pantheon.

#1. The movie looks terrible. I saw it in 3D and it was quite fuzzy in many spots, most noticeably in the overhead shot of the dwarves mourning over Thorin on the frozen waterfall. But basically this whole thing looked like a budget bluecreen production using 10 year old special effects. I remember what a big fuss we all made over the fact that the LOTR was ALL filmed in New Zealand and how incredible it was that such a small place had such a huge variety of awesome looking settings. Well I guess they used them all and just filmed this whole thing in an airplane hangar. There is simply no excuse for not filming in Iceland or Ireland or Norway. Don't give me the budgetary considerations line either, this movie will make like a billion dollars and there were only like 20 real actors in it and they built literally nothing to film it. Space-suckfest Prometheus, for all its flaws, looked amazing and that movie is a hundred years old now... ditto Avatar - great looking awful movie. There is just no excuse for the generic scenery, poorly done CGI and overall lack of good-lookiness here.

#2. Nothing happened. Yeah yeah ok so lots literally happened, but nothing happened. The same 3-4 points were revisited in constant rotation for two and a half hours until enough people died that Bilbo could go home. The movie was....boring for lack of a better word. I can only watch orcs running through streets for so long you know...

#3. All the surprises were stupid. The whole BOFA event in the books is itself a surprise. I get that for movie-making reasons it can't quite be the clusterbomb shock that it is in the book, but instead we get a bunch of smaller, less interesting thunderduds. "Oh no, Orcs from Gundabad! (that are different from the orcs that are already here!)." Uhh, wait, we don't know what Gundabad is, we better spend ten dollars on a lousy GGI retread from the rejected pile and then send two actors there to look at it for ten minutes whispering ominously.... "Wait, look its Dain!! We are saved (maybe)" Uhh who is Dain? Well let's hope the vague mention of birds an hour ago will suffice to explain how he came to arrive in the knick of time... Oh yeah we had that bear-guy in the last movie, let's drop him like the napalm in Apocalypse Now, just for fun. To be fair, I am holding the movie to a standard not even maintained by Tolkien since the Eagles are always his deus ex machina but I will just... you know, shut up YOU, I am not even talking about a book.... The knife through Thorin's boot from under the ice, stupid. The things from Tremors, stupid. The golden bell smashing the wall was actually pretty awesome, it reminded me of AC/DC who are of course like the stupidest band on the planet (that I love).

#4. Boop, and we're home. Mweh. Less orcs running through streets and this might have actually been set up properly to generate some sort of emotive reaction from me, fully representative constituent of humanity that I am. I literally almost cried at the end of ROTK, the Grey Havens scene was just so well-done and bittersweet. Here, nothing.

Like ROTK, this movie had some things I liked, Thorin's dying words to Bilbo were touching. Smaug blasting Laketown looked awesome (why did that only have to last like 5 minutes???), and...hmmm. Dwarven shield-wall? *muted yay* Also this movie had the trailer for the new Mad Max movie which looks like a totally amazing 2 hour car chase. Car chases are MUCH more exciting than orcs running through streets (I say with zero irony so there). Seriously, that movie looks like it will be bad***...mutant psychos in facemasks and exploding cars...

So there you have it. The franchise out with a whimper - the amazing special effects, compelling subject matter and terrific casting all no longer sufficient to distract us from PJ (and his team)'s brutal deficiencies as writers and filmmakers. Couple that with the transparent cash-grabbing expansion of this slender volume to three enormous empty-calorie movies and I think we are all just happy this is over, for now.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby lotrjw » Fri Jan 02, 2015 12:14 pm

MaxPower wrote:...But the clincher for knowing you have an extended edition, is the run-time (which can be found on the bottom of the back cover): theatrical cut - 161 min. extended cut - 186 min...


Be careful when talking about run-times for BluRay it will be the same the world over, but for DVD in countries that had PAL/SECAM analogue TV standard (most of the world), it will be 4% shorter due to 'PAL speedup' aka films are 24 frames per second and PAL/SECAM countries are 25 frames per second. NTSC countries have the same run-time as the BluRay and the original film as they use a different method.

So in PAL/SECAM countries the DVD versions will be: theatrical cut - 155 min. extended cut - 179 min
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby Lalaith-Elerrina » Sat Jan 03, 2015 7:05 am

Lysandros wrote: So there you have it. The franchise out with a whimper - the amazing special effects, compelling subject matter and terrific casting all no longer sufficient to distract us from PJ (and his team)'s brutal deficiencies as writers and filmmakers. Couple that with the transparent cash-grabbing expansion of this slender volume to three enormous empty-calorie movies and I think we are all just happy this is over, for now.


For myself, I am convinced that the movie would have been so much more powerful had it been confined to one movie, or at the most, two. So much unnecessary stuff would not have been put in to expand them like the implausible elf/dwarf thing, or Alfrid being so overpowering, etc. The story would have been told powerfully and concisely, and they would have made more money from me.
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby darthgandalf99 » Sun Jan 04, 2015 5:49 am

Having seen it for the third time in the cinema (I have seen each of the Middle earth films three times in the cinema) I definitely feel that I've got all I can from it (in contrast with the LOTR films).

I'm eagerly awaiting the EE as I am convinced that cut will lift the film. I wish we could get it sooner rather than later but I am sure we will have to wait until autumn due to commercial reasons (i.e. to encourage fans to buy both the TE and EE on DVD/Blu ray).
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Re: Tele's Marty BOTFA review and Q&A (spoilers)

Postby darthgandalf99 » Sun Jan 04, 2015 5:59 am

Interesting how much enthusiasm at TORC seems to have waned with each Hobbit film.

For AUJ, the review thread was coming up to 13 pages by this time. viewtopic.php?f=72&t=104683&start=360

I suppose everything that needs to be said has been said. The first film was an outlet for general discontent with the direction of this new trilogy and these films have not impassioned most of us (either way) in the fashion of the LOTR films.
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