Monday, December 17, 2012

The Hobbit. A long-expected movie.

It's here! It is finally here! Saturday afternoon I saw The Hobbit with some friends.

Over all, I like it very much.

*Spoiler Alert. Don't continue reading if you haven't seen the movie yet.* 

There were a few things I did not like, like the troll sneezing all over Bilbo. Yuck.

Radagast was hardly what I pictured, plus he's not even in the book, The Hobbit. He is in the book, The Lord of the Rings, and he doesn't have a sleigh pulled by rabbits as far as I know. Bird poop on the side of his face: gross and not needed. The part where he out runs the wolves with his rabbit sleigh is just kinda silly.

The film portrayal of The Goblin King left me disappointed, the things he said, and the voice he used were so very un-goblinlike. It didn't fit with his grotesque appearance. The voice would be better matched to a greedy business tycoon in a suit.  

The beginning was neat because it ties right into The Lord of the Rings, the film. The Hobbit (film) opens with Bilbo and Frodo on the morning of Bilbo's big party. We see Frodo run off to meet Gandalf on his way into town, and we know what will follow in The Lord of Rings: "You're late." "A wizard is never late, Frodo Baggins, nor is he early. He arrives precisely when he means too." Remember? If we stopped The Hobbit there, and put on The Lord of the Rings, well, it would flow seamlessly.

I really am glad they kept so many of the opening lines and dialogue from the book.

The song about the dishes, as much as I could catch, was right from the book.

His button's popped off when he escaped from the cave! Yay!

Gandalf said to Bilbo (loose paraphrase): "Courage is not killing people, but deciding who to let live."
Sure enough, along comes the Gollum scene. Although they changed Bilbo's escape from the cave a little, they emphasized the point that Bilbo lets Gollum live when he could have killed him. They made it very clear. Bilbo sees the pain and lostness in Gollum's eyes when he was about to slay him and makes the decision not to kill Gollum. This scene then fits in very well with this dialogue from The Lord of the Rings (film):
 Frodo, "It's a pity Bilbo didn't kill him while he had the chance." 
Gandalf replies, "Pity? It was pity that staid Bilbo's hand. There are many that die who deserve life, and many who live that deserve death. Can you give it to them Frodo? Do not be to eager to deal out death and judgment."

While this dialogue is not in the books, these scenes work well in the movies and add a powerful lesson in the midst of scenes of heroes slaying enemies (where fighting is glorified). Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the battle scenes, I'm glad though, that this point is made so that we all remember that strength and courage is not defined by the number of heads one has chopped off.

Another Lord of the Rings tie-in: Gandalf said to Bilbo, "Your home is behind you, the world ahead." These lines are almost straight from Pippin's Song. "Home is behind, the world ahead." In the book, Pippin does not sing for Denethor, but many of the other songs the hobbits sing were written by Bilbo. So, this is a strange sort of book/movie mixed-up tie-in. It's like Bilbo later wrote Pippin's Song after his adventure, but you wouldn't know that unless you read the books.

"I'm going on an adventure!"
I also love the moment when Bilbo is running down the path and a hobbit asks him were he is going. "I'm going on an adventure!" he cries with the contract flapping in his raised hand.

Twice, Thorin used a large piece of tree trunk (small log) as a shield. My brother pointed out that could be how he got his name: Thorin Oakenshield. Interesting, it's not in the books, but it's interesting that they made the movie detailed enough that even his name has a back story.

A surmise about the next installment: that big rock the eagles drop them off at looks like a bear. I think that must be the Carrock of Beorn. Which implies they skipped the night at the eagle eyries (not a big deal) and just had them dropped off at the Carrock immediately.

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