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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug - review
theguardian.com ^ | Friday 6 December 2013 22.17 GMT | Peter Bradshaw

Posted on 12/06/2013 3:31:21 PM PST by BenLurkin

eter Jackson has picked up the pace. He began his Hobbit trilogy at an amiable, meanderingly wayward canter, and tried the patience of believers and non-believers alike with that initial supper scene, almost an epic in itself. But this second episode commences with a narrative whipcrack – a quick flashback to Gandalf and Thorin tensely discussing their great plan in the snug bar of the Prancing Pony – and then we're off, at a tremendous gallop.

The Desolation of Smaug is a cheerfully entertaining and exhilarating adventure tale, a supercharged Saturday morning picture: it's mysterious and strange and yet Jackson also effortlessly conjures up that genial quality that distinguishes The Hobbit from the more solemn Rings stories. The absurdity is winning: you're laughing with, not laughing at. For me, it never sagged once in its mighty two hour 40 minutes running time and the high-frame-rate projection for this film somehow looks richer and denser than it did the last time around. Maybe I'm just getting used to it. Jackson has shown that he is an expert in big-league popular movie-making to rival Lucas and Spielberg. His Smaug, with its fight scenes, chase spectaculars, creepy creatures and secret stone doors opening with a grinding noise, is something to set alongside the Indiana Jones films.

(Excerpt) Read more at theguardian.com ...


TOPICS: TV/Movies; The Hobbit Hole
KEYWORDS: desolationofsmog; movies; smaug; thehobbit

1 posted on 12/06/2013 3:31:21 PM PST by BenLurkin
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To: BenLurkin
I tried "high frame rate" the last time around, and I feel it very much detracted from the movie going experience.

When I go to the movies, I want to be caught up in a story. High Frame Rate makes me caught up in a set, in makeup, in feeling like I'm pushed around in a wheelbarrow through something fake. It feels like looking at a full-motion diorama.

2 posted on 12/06/2013 3:38:19 PM PST by Yossarian
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To: BenLurkin

I haven’t seen the second one yet, but the first was mostly a snoozer. He should probably have cut this down to two films, max. Not everything has to be a trilogy, it’s getting ridiculous.


3 posted on 12/06/2013 3:38:58 PM PST by Boogieman
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To: Yossarian

I just couldn’t get past what a bad movie the first one was.


4 posted on 12/06/2013 3:39:10 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
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To: BenLurkin

I can’t take three movies for one book.


5 posted on 12/06/2013 3:40:29 PM PST by Fledermaus (If we here in TN can't get rid of the worthless Lamar, it's over.)
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To: Boogieman

The Hobbit is not a long book. There is no reason in the world why a movie picture adaptation should exceed 120 minutes. Total.


6 posted on 12/06/2013 3:40:37 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
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To: BenLurkin

If they took out all the walking it would only be 30 minutes long.


7 posted on 12/06/2013 3:45:23 PM PST by mad_as_he$$
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To: BenLurkin

What? BenLurkin because you’re afraid that people will find out how terrible your taste in movies is? Just saying.


8 posted on 12/06/2013 3:45:55 PM PST by FreedomStar3028 (Evil must be punished.)
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To: BenLurkin

I liked it quite a bit.


9 posted on 12/06/2013 3:53:34 PM PST by chris37 (Heartless.)
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To: Boogieman

I disagree. While Peter Jackson should have included only relevant background material in the Hobbit, it should be as long as it needs to be.

In the Hobbit’s case, three movies might have been too much, but it certainly would have needed two movies to tell the whole story.


10 posted on 12/06/2013 3:58:49 PM PST by Jonty30 (What Islam and secularism have in common is that they are both death cults)
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To: FreedomStar3028

You can call me Ben, Newbie.


11 posted on 12/06/2013 3:59:02 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
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To: Boogieman

I haven’t seen the first one. If it’s that bad, then maybe Jackson should’ve done a “scouring of the Shire” in its place.


12 posted on 12/06/2013 4:07:07 PM PST by Olog-hai
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To: Olog-hai

I did see the first installment of “The Hobbit”. I enjoyed it; found the storytelling, acting, cinematography engaging throughout.

IMO, if someone found it boring, the problem is elsewhere than the film itself ...


13 posted on 12/06/2013 4:09:32 PM PST by NorthMountain
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To: BenLurkin

Some of us like to wallow in our fantasy. TLOTR brushed over too many potential stories for me. Eight long movies for Harry Potter seemed rushed to me. ;-)


14 posted on 12/06/2013 4:09:36 PM PST by JimSEA
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To: BenLurkin

I loathed the farce of the dwarves running around in the goblin cave.


15 posted on 12/06/2013 4:10:01 PM PST by heartwood
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To: Olog-hai

I loved LOTR Trilogy but was very disappointed there was no scouring. Nearly my favorite part of the books.


16 posted on 12/06/2013 4:13:18 PM PST by jimmyray
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To: BenLurkin

There are some great bits in the first one - some bits did seem superfluous like the mountain battle or whatever it was called and it pretty well jumped the with shark with some of the action stuff in the Goblin Kings cave. It is not LOTR and does not try to be - it is far more lighthearted. The Desolation of Smaulg doesn’t come out here until the day after Christmas - looking forward to it!


17 posted on 12/06/2013 4:14:54 PM PST by melsec (Once a Jolly Swagman camped by a Billabong.)
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To: Olog-hai

It has it’s moments, it’s just bloated, like they stretched it out to fill up a trilogy. The last hour is worth waiting for though, if you can make it.


18 posted on 12/06/2013 4:16:18 PM PST by Boogieman
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To: Boogieman

How ironic. Somebody complaining about trilogies when it comes to works of Tolkien.


19 posted on 12/06/2013 4:19:20 PM PST by Usagi_yo
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To: BenLurkin

“The Desolation of Smaug”
What is a Smaug?


20 posted on 12/06/2013 4:19:52 PM PST by minnesota_bound
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To: Boogieman

Well, I had no problem watching the LOTR extended editions when they came out, so maybe I could hack it . . .


21 posted on 12/06/2013 4:19:57 PM PST by Olog-hai
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To: Usagi_yo
Ironic? It was the publisher that broke LOTR up into three books; Tolkien presented it to Allen & Unwin as one book.
22 posted on 12/06/2013 4:21:47 PM PST by Olog-hai
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To: Olog-hai
I haven’t seen the first one. If it’s that bad, then maybe Jackson should’ve done a “scouring of the Shire” in its place.

Why? It will only be co-opted by the environmentalists and ultimately end up a documentary on man made disasters on the Discovery Channel :/

23 posted on 12/06/2013 4:22:24 PM PST by Usagi_yo
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To: minnesota_bound

A big red dragon. The main villain of the Hobbit book.


24 posted on 12/06/2013 4:22:26 PM PST by Olog-hai
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To: Usagi_yo

Ah, so Saruman was a “capitalist”? And here I thought he was a sort of cipher for Stalin, with the rapid industrialization and all.


25 posted on 12/06/2013 4:23:34 PM PST by Olog-hai
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To: minnesota_bound; BenLurkin

May I suggest that you try reading the book?


26 posted on 12/06/2013 4:25:26 PM PST by Kartographer ("We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.")
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To: melsec

I am very much looking forward to it! I started a tradion 12 years ago when my first two Grandchildren were small. We call it Pappaw Day me and the Grandchildren go for pizza and a movie. It started mainly to get the little ones out of the house while baking,cooking and last minute wrapping was done.

Now 12 years later its me and 6 grandchildren ages 7 to 19 and only us. no one else is invited. When the eldest turn 18 someone asked her about if she was still going to join in on Pappaw Day and she said she would always be there. And I added that I hoped a day would come when I would make a exception to the guest list and add my Grandchildren to the fellowship.

PS: I brought all of them black long sleeve tee shirts last year with the White Tree of Gondor on them. We will all be wearing them and I am looking forward to having a picture taken of us all in the lobby almost as much as the movie!


27 posted on 12/06/2013 4:35:12 PM PST by Kartographer ("We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.")
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To: Jonty30

Sure, but you don’t need 6 hours of film to do the Hobbit, that’s just indulgent. Or maybe they are trying to conform to the “trilogy” format, since Hollywood doesn’t know how to do anything other than copy things that were previously successful.


28 posted on 12/06/2013 4:37:18 PM PST by Boogieman
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To: Usagi_yo

Pff, Tolkien did trilogies before they were cool :)


29 posted on 12/06/2013 4:39:31 PM PST by Boogieman
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To: BenLurkin

Real imaginative. Now I get it. A saying comes to mind, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.


30 posted on 12/06/2013 4:40:47 PM PST by FreedomStar3028 (Evil must be punished.)
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To: minnesota_bound

A Dragon!


31 posted on 12/06/2013 4:42:17 PM PST by FreedomStar3028 (Evil must be punished.)
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To: BenLurkin
There is no reason in the world why a movie picture adaptation should exceed 120 minutes. Total.

Sure there is. Money. They're going to make three times more, more or less, with three movies than they would with one, and with significant savings in production costs.

32 posted on 12/06/2013 4:51:57 PM PST by Bubba Ho-Tep ("More weight!"--Giles Corey)
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To: Boogieman

I would agree with you that 6 hours is too long for the Hobbit, but I want every bit of information of Middle Earth that is relevant in the movies, including the stuff that would fill out the background of Elrond and Smaug and whomever else. However, relevancy is the main qualification.

Some scenes in the first movie were quite superfluous in how it was done, like them running zig zag over what seems to be a small field when the party was being chased by orcs. That certainly could have been handled better.

One of the problems I had was the scenes with the Goblin King. The stunts during the action sequences just weren’t convincing to me.


33 posted on 12/06/2013 4:57:03 PM PST by Jonty30 (What Islam and secularism have in common is that they are both death cults)
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To: Kartographer

I will wait for the movie : )


34 posted on 12/06/2013 5:05:41 PM PST by minnesota_bound
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To: minnesota_bound

You are missing a GREAT read.


35 posted on 12/06/2013 5:06:26 PM PST by Kartographer ("We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.")
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To: Olog-hai

I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt on that one. I seem to recall that all three books where written several years apart and published as written.

But still, it’s ironic in any case since it proved to be a very good marketing technique.


36 posted on 12/06/2013 5:07:56 PM PST by Usagi_yo
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To: Olog-hai

Nah, the Scouring of the shire is metaphorically closer to prohibition and Al Capone. :/


37 posted on 12/06/2013 5:13:10 PM PST by Usagi_yo
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To: Usagi_yo

The whole thing was written after twelve years (and several false starts; it wasn’t Tolkien’s full-time job). Allen and Unwin convinced Tolkien to release it in three volumes due to “economic” reasons; they didn’t have the resources to publish a big volume like that.


38 posted on 12/06/2013 5:21:45 PM PST by Olog-hai
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To: minnesota_bound

Smaug. Your classic dragon. Lives in a cave. Breathes fire. Hoards gold. eats wayward travelers. The usual stuff.


39 posted on 12/06/2013 6:36:01 PM PST by Flick Lives (The U.S. is dead to me.)
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To: Kartographer

That’s awesome - dang I wanna come on Pappaw Day too - especially loved the tees with the Kings Tree on it! Pappaw you are a legend - well done!!!

Mel


40 posted on 12/06/2013 6:37:57 PM PST by melsec (Once a Jolly Swagman camped by a Billabong.)
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To: Yossarian
I tried "high frame rate" the last time around, and I feel it very much detracted from the movie going experience.

I agree. It didn't look smoother, it looked sped-up. Very distracting.

41 posted on 12/06/2013 6:42:39 PM PST by Future Snake Eater (CrossFit.com)
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To: melsec
I'll have to post the picture.

Pizza buffet for 7 $50.00.
7 matinee movie tickets $60.00.

The memmories?

Worth more than all of Earth's riches!

42 posted on 12/06/2013 6:47:13 PM PST by Kartographer ("We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.")
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To: melsec

“Bilbo Baggins and the Temple of Doom” just didn’t cut it for me.


43 posted on 12/06/2013 6:55:35 PM PST by Mr Rogers (Liberals are like locusts...)
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To: BenLurkin
The Hobbit is not a long book. There is no reason in the world why a movie picture adaptation should exceed 120 minutes. Total.

There is an excellent reason to make The Hobbit into three movies: it allows those of us who love Middle Earth to spend as much time there as possible. I'm just unhappy that when the entire cycle is finished, we will have in total less than 18 hours in those magnificent realms.

44 posted on 12/06/2013 7:06:44 PM PST by ottbmare (the OTTB mare, now a proud Marine Mom)
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To: minnesota_bound

A Smaug is a disgusting, stinking, vile beast from Kenya which infests white houses.


45 posted on 12/06/2013 8:05:36 PM PST by Enterprise ("Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." Voltaire)
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To: Mr Rogers

Thats funny lol :)


46 posted on 12/06/2013 8:26:49 PM PST by melsec (Once a Jolly Swagman camped by a Billabong.)
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To: Kartographer

Amen!


47 posted on 12/06/2013 8:27:15 PM PST by melsec (Once a Jolly Swagman camped by a Billabong.)
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To: BenLurkin
So what's next - Peter Jackson's The Silmarillion?
48 posted on 12/07/2013 2:43:50 AM PST by eCSMaster ("It is not the color of his skin, ... it is the blackness that fills his soul")
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To: BenLurkin
The Hobbit is not a long book. There is no reason in the world why a movie picture adaptation should exceed 120 minutes. Total.

C'mon - the theaters need longer movies to sell ore of the "economy-sized" popcorn. Besides, people want to get more for their money even if more means less.

On the flip side, movies can be like shopping - I like to do a fast in-and-out foray...

49 posted on 12/07/2013 3:07:23 AM PST by trebb (Where in the the hell has my country gone?)
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To: Enterprise

bump!


50 posted on 12/07/2013 6:51:16 AM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
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