Monday, May 6, 2013

The Undefined Gamer: "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" Review

The unexpected gifts are often the best.
      The Hobbit is just one of those unexpected gifts that you tend to
love. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Trilogy seemed to just come from
nowhere when it was announced last year. There was no buildup, there
was no supposed talks (at least none that I knew about*), MGM and
Warner just seemed to decide to make it and voila! A year later and
Peter Jackson has completed the fourth Rings movie.
     I like The Hobbit. Following the original 305 page Tolkien classic,
the story is told by the old Bilbo from Rings that we are accustomed
to. Writing to his nephew, Frodo (Elijah Wood after his Spyro trilogy
voicework), the film capitalizes on fans' nostalgia for the Rings
Trilogy, including the popular Fellowship soundtrack when portraying
the Shire in all its grassy glory. Peter Jackson tries to capture (and
successfully at that) all that made the Lord of the Rings magical, from
its epic fight sequences, to its deep, peaceful nostalgic settings
such as the Shire.
      The story focuses on the Dwarven City of Aragor. Long ago, the Dwarf
King there amassed massive amounts of gold their. He had a gold fetish
people, in fact he almost went mad because of them. Think of them as
his Cocoa Puffs.
      All was fine and nice, and all paid respect to King Goldfinger and his
Gold, even the Elven King. However, all that gold attracted a dragon,
Smaug (or how the Dwarves pronounce it, Smowg). I hate it when my gold
attracts dragons!
      The Drarves had to flee Aragor (now called the Lonely Mountain), their
King dead, they made a new life in the Blue Mountains. However, 60
years after the fact, signs indicate that Smaug's time may be up.
      And this is where Gandalf the Grey forces Bilbo into the expedition to
take back Aragor. Being a typical ass, Gandalf invites 13 dwarves into
Bilbo's home, and forgets to notify Bilbo of this. Led by Thorin,
grandson of King Goldf*ck, these dwarves know that they have plenty in
the Blue Mountains, but have a strong urge to reclaim their homeland.
      As you can already see, a lot has been added. A lot has to, for one
does not simply make a Movie trilogy out of a 300-page book. 100 pages
per movie isn't enough material people!**
      The party set off on an epic quest that will see the Dwarves face
Trolls (much less ferocious than the Internet kind), Orcs (They are
NOT bringing the Hobbits to Isenguard), Goblins (Good for exactly...
nothing!), and one very nasty Magical Deaf Man.
Dwarves are awful at hide and seek.
      As I've said before, a lot has been added, and backstories are no
different. After Aragor, Thorin had a nice family outing with Daddy to
the Mines of Moria, which have been overrun by orcs led by a
musclebound white orc (who strangely reminds me if the Gods of War
Protagonist), kniwn only as the Pale Orc. Man, that would've really
been helpful if Thorin told Gimley that. Anyways, Daddy got his head
chopped off by the Pale Orc (Because real orcs Chop off old people's
heads), and nearly does the same to Thorin.
     But fear not! Thorin survived by grasping an Oaken Log as a shield!
Hence his name Thorin Oakenshield! He then cut off the Pale Orc's hand
and the Dwarves forced the Orcs to retreat back into Moria!
      Thorin thought the Pale Orc died of his injuries, but in fact, like
all great rulers, when he loses a limb, he just replaces it with a
sharp object. And, like all great rulers, the Pale Orc commences to
sit on his Werewolf and never uses his new blade when he faces his
foes, like a pussy! Anyways, Paly here has been tracking down Thorin
Oakenshield because, you know, revenge.
      You have a few clashes with the Pale Orc's orcs, they have a run in
with the Goblin Kingdom (basically just like a big treehouse inside a
mountain. Yes, it looks like it was made by a kid, for when one fat
guy trips, everything breaks), and Bilbo has his first experience with
Golem/Sméagol. Badda-boom, bada-ba, we have some run-ins with Radagast
the Brown (a crazy man with bird shit in his hair), who tells of a
Necromancer who can summon the dead (Specifically the souls of the
Fallen Kings), plop Bilbo's Dwarves right outside Aragor, and we've
got ourselves a movie!
      The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is surely entertaining. It's writing
is interesting, and us well-made, as is to be expected of a
blockbuster of this caliber. For the most part, I like what was added,
and the fact that almost nothing was cut out from the original Tolkien
book, but some plot points just seem to drag the plot on, and it
carries a hefty runtime that really could be cut down by 40 minutes
with no ill effects.
"This, young Bilbo, is called... food."
      I've read The Hobbit. I know who dies and who lives on.
I know who kills Smaug. This new content may not change that, and
despite that I'm still on the edge of my seat at some points. However,
the plot seems to drag on at some points, specifically during the 3rd
Act, and at these points, you'll (like me) will feel bored even if a
super-actiony Tolkien adventure is what gets your nerd juices flowing.
However, I was never tempted to turn it off. It's funny, I was worried
having NOT ENOUGH content here.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey gets 5 stars out of 6.
*There were a lot of talks. A LOT.- CW

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