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Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Battle of the Five Armies

This week's movie rental was the last in the Hobbit series, The Battle of the Five Armies ...

a 2014 epic fantasy adventure film, directed by Peter Jackson and written by Jackson, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, and Guillermo del Toro. It is the third and final installment in the three-part film adaptation based on the novel The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, following An Unexpected Journey (2012) and The Desolation of Smaug (2013), and together they act as a prequel to Jackson's The Lord of the Rings film trilogy ... It stars Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Evangeline Lilly, Lee Pace, Luke Evans, Benedict Cumberbatch, Ken Stott and James Nesbitt. It also features Cate Blanchett, Ian Holm, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving and Orlando Bloom.

I read the book when I was a teen - the movie is really pretty different, with additions in characters and action, I guess to make it more dramatic and more of a foreshadowing of The Lord of the Rings movies. While it was fun to see some of the guys from LOTR ... Gandalf, Elrond, Legolas, Saruman, Galadriel, and while there were some interesting subplots like the dwarf/elf romance ...

... on the whole, the film was kind of disappointing. This review of the movie from The Guardian gave it 3 out of 5 stars ...The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies review – no more than a middling finale from Middle-earth

One thing I did like, though, was the character of the elf king Thranduil (the father of Legolas). He seems the most fey of all the elves depicted in the films ... the actor who portrays him described him thus - He's a wild thing, and the wild is a dangerous place. His steed is a giant elk :) Here you can see him upon it as he confronts the dwarves ....

He began the series as kind of a bad guy. Here he was introduced in the first movie of The Hobbit series ...

But by the end of this final movie, he'd gained a bit more complexity and empathy. Here he tries to bond with his son and set him on the path to befriend Aragorn ...

So is the movie worth seeing? Sure :)


Anonymous Richard said...

Yes.. but now what??

11:39 AM  
Blogger crystal said...

Now what what? :)

12:18 PM  
Anonymous Richard said...

oh..just that there are no more Tolkien books to adapt. I think Jackson got as much mileage as he could out of The Hobbit and LOTR. I remember after I read them as a teenager doubting that they could ever be successfully adapted to film and being very disappointed with the early cartoon version. But that was long before the days of CGI. May be he'll take on the Silmarillion:)

8:16 AM  
Blogger crystal said...

I never read the Silmarillion - what was it about?

9:22 AM  
Anonymous Richard said...

Hard to describe and been a long time since I read it. See the snip from the Amazon review below. Intrigued?...I may have to read it again :)

"By Mike London on January 6, 2012

In the Tolkien canon, THE SILMARILLION is the most highly contested of all his works. Constructed as a prehistoric history of the Universe, the book has the cultural significance of the Bible in Tolkien's universe. It is Tolkien's primary work, but it's also his most troublesome, in more ways than one. One thing you need to know. In Tolkien scholarship, there are two primary ways to refer to the "Silmarillion". One is the Silmarillion, the legendarium proper, and then the 1977 SILMARILLION, which may or may not be what Tolkien envisioned.

THE SILMARILLION, the book Tolkien spent all of his adult life writing, was, sadly, incomplete when Tolkien died at the age of eighty one in 1973. Naturally, this begs the question why did it take him decades to write the book, and it still be unfinished after all that time? Well, to understand that, you need to understand two things: the scope of the project, and how Tolkien worked..."

3:20 PM  
Blogger crystal said...

Hmmmm. Maybe I'll just read the wikipedia page instead ;) I did really like Lord of the Rings and read it many times, but not so much the Hobbit. And actually I liked the LOTR movie a lot more than the book. So I'm not so much a Tolkien fan, I guess.

3:45 PM  

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