The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

empire-magazine-smaug-the-dragon-hobbit-battle-of-the-five-armiesThis film is everything I expected it to be. It ties up everything with hints pointers to the Lord of the Rings. The action scenes have all the usual beats and last minute saves of the day. There isn’t anything fresh here that you haven’t seen in the past 15 hours of middle earth shot by Pete Jackson. The films seem to necessitate the trilogy more than the story which is why a lot of this has seemed so dragged out and at times uninteresting. Instead of a trilogy I think Peter Jackson could have made two really great Hobbit films or one fantastic Hobbit movie. We saw what he could do with the Fellowship of the Ring, a book which has more pages than the Hobbit if i’m not mistaken. But because of the need for one book to fill 3 movies there is a lot of things stuffed into the movie.

Take Orlando Bloom for example, he returns again playing Super Mario, although this time he has more than one facial expression. Not only do we have angry face but also sympathetic face. Awesome. And that Elve chick that was solely created so they could cram in a love story that takes up the best part of the screen time from the scenes we actually want to see. The scenes that were actually taken from Tolkein’s Book but shortened so we could rehash Aragon and Arwen.

Well, with that said ‘The Battle of the Five Armies’ is the best of the Hobbit movies mainly for the fact that it finally gets on with the damn story we want to see. The Battle itself is good but it’s no Helm’s deep. Also the action scenes are getting blurrier. I remember back in the day (10 years ago) when you watch battle scenes in a movie you could actually see people fighting and striking each other but these days the camera has to be up close and moving frantically so you can’t get a clear picture of what’s going on. Just a damn headache. The opening scenes of the movie however are off the friggin hook. Benedict Cumberbatch is delightfully scary as Smaug the Dragon when he goes all fire bomb on lake town. I have to say this is perhaps the most violent of the Hobbit and Lord of The Rings movies. Innocent people get killed and we see their remains afterwards too. It’s a vision of hell done very well by Jackson and if this were a higher age rating I would have liked it if they had stuck with the intensity of those moments and the lasting effects.

By the end none of the character’s deaths really resonated with me since I didn’t really care about them or felt I had been on a journey with them. These films moved away from it’s strongest assets and played with other things.

Special mentions to Christopher Lee and Billy Connolly rocking it old school. If it’s one thing Peter Jackson got spot on with these films it’s the casting. I have loved every casting choice he has made in these movies.

If you wanna see a nice film with your girlfriend for the Christmas season go to ‘Gone Girl’. If you want to be done with middle earth and complete your viewing of the trilogy because you’re a completist whore then watch this.

Favorite Quote: “Farewell, Master Burglar. Go back to your books, your fireplace. Plant your trees, watch them grow. If more of us valued home above gold, it would be a merrier world.”  – Thorin Oakenshield

This entry was posted in Benedict Cumberbatch, Book to Film, Cinema, Fantasy and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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