REVIEW: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (Part 1)
Overall, an excellent start to a new chapter in the LOTR Saga
First off I have to say that I was just about as amazed or shocked as anyone else when I heard that Peter Jackson's The Hobbit would be split into not two, but three parts. Naturally since I read the book, a while ago, I was curious to see how this would be done. I loved LOTR. Return of the King and Fellowship are my favorites (Special Edition Versions). Two Towers was a little slow in my opinion only because the best part is the intro and Helm's Deep. But anyway, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is established to take place 60 years before LOTR. Now for those of you that might be confused with some material, allow me to explain. In the beginning of FOTR, everything is explained about the Ring and there's even a glimpse of Bilbo when he finds the Ring. The Hobbit takes place during that time period, years before Frodo and his companions are born. The Elves and Dwarves are longtime enemies. At the start of the film, Bilbo sits at home writing in his book, telling about his adventure to the Lonely Mountain and whatnot. Elijah Wood has a brief cameo appearance, which serves as a purpose of leading right into the Fellowship of the Ring when Gandalf returns.
60 years earlier: Bilbo meets Gandalf and eventually the 12 Dwarves led by Thorin. Their purpose is to reclaim their kingdom, which was overthrown by Smaug the Dragon. Smaug was referenced to multiple times throughout the film, just as I'd hoped. I know for a fact that he won't make his true debut until Part II is released next winter. One thing that helped me enjoy this movie more was not comparing it to the LOTR trilogy because these films have been done differently. Its a totally different style. Both the Fellowship and an Unexpected Journey have a lot of explaining to do in the beginning. Some would say that makes the film "slow", but I beg to differ. Quite the opposite really in my humble opinion. There's plenty of action throughout the movie and there are even some extra material added into the movie for sub plots, since there isn't enough for three films.
I would've preferred that The Hobbit be split into two films, but I'm fine with a trilogy. I think it'll work out fine. Part One was good, I loved it. The best thing to do is to go into the movie with an open mind and try not to be too critical just because there isn't action right away. I'd rather have a good story with no action rather than a mindless movie with no soul. I must say also that I was excited to see Gollum again on the big screen. There were minimal changes from book to film that I noticed, but its really not a big deal. Half the material from LOTR was changed from the books mostly because some things wouldn't have worked here and there. Of all the Dwarves in the movie Thorin is probably my favorite. I was hoping to see the Mirkwood Spiders in this one, but hopefully they'll be in Part II or III. The Numecrator is referenced a.k.a Sauron. That was a nice nod I think. Didn't think that would be put in there so that was interesting. Overall its a good film. You don't need to be a LOTR fan to enjoy it. Can't wait for Part Two: Desolation of Smaug
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