Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

        I am pleased to say that I really enjoyed TDoS. Really, really enjoyed it. Like it was so fantastic that I saw it two days ago and am still bubbling over with excitement! I went in knowing that it was not going to be very book-accurate, so was not alarmed. There were a few parts that I closed my eyes for or looked away, but over all I think that it is a lot better than An Unexpected Journey. Maybe because the parts with the wood elves and Laketown were my favorites in the book, and maybe because, well, it was just very good. 

       Once again, I do not own any of these pictures, characters, etc. There will be some spoilers, too. Just to let you know, I always have trouble remembering in what order things happen when I see a movie in theaters, so if it is a bit mixed up, I apologise. 
        The movie started with a prologue, which I was not expecting. I always kind of wondered how Thorin got the idea to retake Erebor, and I thought it was informative. Then it switched to Bilbo and the dwarves on the run again from Azog and his orcs; basically where An Unexpected Journey left off. Let me tell you, Beorn as a bear was pretty scary looking. He reminded me a lot of a warg, and if I had been Bilbo, I think I would have been frightened to death. He actually was just like I imagined him as a man. I really liked his house, though, and those ponies that he let them all borrow to get to Mirkwood were beautiful. I am not a horse expert, so I don't know what breed they were, but I wish I did.
        Mirkwood did look sick. What is strange is that yesterday, we drove past some oaks that were drying up and shedding their leaves, and they looked almost identical! (Should I be worried?) I really liked the forest - well, I did like the forest until the spiders showed up. I do not like the spiders in LOTR, nor now in The Hobbit. Shelob really grossed me out in the Return of the King, and I ended up closing my eyes for most of the scene. That is, until a certain elf showed up. And his spider slaying captain of the guard. (You know, the website I got it from said that the first picture of Legolas is from TDOS, but I'm not so sure. He looks too young to me, but I like the picture, so here it is).

        Yeah. I just realized that picture is from the original trilogy. Orlando is wearing an elven clasp. Oh well. I wasn't sure if I was going to like Tauriel, she being in the weird love triangle with Kili and Legolas. I didn't mind her, surprisingly, and I kind of liked getting to see different sides of her and Kili when they were together. She was a very Tolkien-like character, but the Kili/Tauriel romance was NOT like Tolkien at all. That's bad. I am a big Kili fan; I like him and Fili a lot, but still I could definitely have gone without the love triangle. This is a quote that I read:
        "Tauriel is based off the many female Mirkwood guards who were nameless in the book. She is used to the reference the elves' love for starlight which for the Avari is especially true because they love the stars of Middle-earth so much that they never experienced the light is Valinor in the First Age, which distinguishes them from Legolas & Thranduil. She is a terrific homage to Tolkien's work. Well done, Peter!"
        Tauriel was fierce and fearless, yet had a feminine side that made me admire her greatly. She was gentle and kind, and at only 600 years old rather young and innocent, and I can't wait to find out what happens with her in There and Back Again.
        I am a huge fan of the elven palace in Mirkwood, though. I couldn't find any more pictures, but the dungeon cells where they locked the dwarves were amazing, as was Thranduil's throne (room). The elvenking himself was very proud, very isolationist, and very stern. I have a soft spot for elves, unfortunately, so I liked him too. (Before we move on, let me just say that I lived the part where Gloin mentioned Gimli to Legolas! I laughed out loud in the theater!)

        I must say that I never imagined that elves would be sleeping drunk down in the cellars, but I LOVED the barrel scene! It was funny when Thorin realized what Bilbo's plan was and told all of the surprised dwarves to do as he had said. It was when Kili got shot with the Morgul shaft while trying to open the gate that I realized that I really do like him after all. Although I seriously thought that Peter Jackson had killed him off until Tauriel and Legolas showed up again and sent them on their way. Once again, I could have done without quite as many orcs, but Legolas did his job with style and I did enjoy the scene very much.
        I really liked Luke Evans as Bard the Bowman. He and his family were so cute! His house, and Laketown in general, was really nice. I would say I would like to live there but for their joke of a king and government. Anyway, back to Bard. I loved his commitment to his family, his loyalty and kindness toward the people of his town, and pretty much everything about him. He is rather a quiet and solitary man, an observer, and a protector. In some ways, he reminds me a lot of my own father. When he pulled the black arrow down from the ceiling, but heart just about jumped right out of me.

        It just about broke my heart when Thorin made Kili stay in Laketown, but when Fili, his devoted brother, insisted on staying with him, I melted. Who doesn't love these two?

        It was nice to have switches between the dwarves at the lonely mountain and the dwarves in Laketown. If there had not been those cuts, I think there would have been far too much dragon. And the love triangle was, may I say, resolved? No, not quite the word I was looking for. When Tauriel healed Kili of his fever, I am sure many people recognized the kingsfoil, the same plant that Aragorn used for Frodo because of his morgul blade wound. I was pleased at that reference! Athelas, kingsfoil, I love it!

        The CG on Smaug was exceptional! He really looked like a dragon. And Martin Freeman's whole conversation with him was cool. And the way he and the dwarves finally got Smaug to leave was equally amazing! Richard Armitage was great as Thorin once again. He has portrayed Thorin in an amazing way and showed me that he understands the character to an extreme depth. I actually understand and relate to him more than I did in the book (horror!).

        I sat in a movie theater for almost three hours, and at the end of the movie, I wanted more. Peter Jackson is cruel to make us wait a whole year more! I was very impressed by the Desolation of Smaug, and can only hope that There and Back Again will be as good!



  1. I agree with everything you said. Yes, I didn't mind Tauriel either. I also went into the theater knowing that it wasn't going to be exactly like the book. I was fine with that. P.J. made such great action scenes that weren't in the book for example, when Kili was shot. I found something on Pinterest and it was very interesting. So you know how Tauriel was ‘glowing’ when she was healing Kili? Well, a lot people think she was glowing because Kili was in love with her. Okay, he might like her a little bit, but the reason she was glowing is because Kili was about to die. Do you remember in Lord of the Rings, when Frodo was stabbed with the Morgul blade and Arwen started glowing? Well, Frodo wasn’t in love with her, he was just on the verge of death. I think a lot of people forget that part in LOTR, and then they don’t like Tauriel. That’s cool about what P.J. said about Tauriel representing all the unmentioned female characters. I did think it was funny how Legolas was stalking her and Kili. I can imagine him thinking, “Don’t touch my elf! She’s mine not yours!” There should’ve been a scene where Legolas was with the dwarves and he could’ve been like, “Prettier than you”. He actually kind of said that when he said that the dwarves were now less ugly. Anyways, I like your blog! I just found it.

    1. Thanks! That was really interesting, what you said about Frodo/Arwen and Kili/Tauriel; it makes a lot of sense! Yes, and Legolas cracked me up! Yes, they totally should have had a 'prettier than you' scene with him and the dwarves, that would have been EPIC. Thanks for commenting! Oh, and I love your blog as well!