Tag Archives: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Some Thoughts on “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” *Contains Spoilers*

Y’all are in luck; this review will be much more coherent than last year’s post on An Unexpected Journey (wherein I made the mistake of writing immediately after watching and was still on an adrenaline high). Now I actually have organized my thoughts in a more coherent manner and can come across with at least a modicum of intelligence.

It started out brilliantly, with Beorn the Skinchanger appearing almost right away as the biggest bear on the face of Middle-Earth. Seriously, he was huge. And awesome. His awesomeness almost made me willing to forgive Peter Jackson for leaving Tom Bombadil out of The Fellowship of the Ring–and then he had Gandalf describe Beorn as “being under no enchantment but his own”, a description given to Bombadil in the books. It was bad enough that they gave some of Bombadil’s lines to Treebeard in the movies, but actually using Bombadil’s description for Beorn was just another reminder that BOMBADIL WAS BLATENTLY ABSENT FROM THE MOVIES! AND SO WAS GLORFINDEL FOR THAT MATTER!

Ahem. As I was saying, Beorn was brilliant, and it wasn’t long at all before our brave company ventured into Mirkwood, and Bilbo was fighting to free the Dwarves from giant spiders (although I wish his “Lazy Lob” song had been included). And then the Elves were introduced in a manner that was completely different from the book.

It was from this point onwards that the movie began to diverge wildly from the book. I’m serious; the longer it went, the more it diverged from the original plot, so much so that it was barely recognizable at the end. Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a little bit, but when you throw in a love story that does absolutely nothing for the plot (and wasn’t even in the book in the first place!) and have the Dwarves completely forget that Durin’s Day is marked by the last sun of summer and first moon of autumn shining in the sky TOGETHER, I’m going to get mad! That’s right; the Dwarves forgot an important detail about the most important day of their people’s year. And that Kili/Tauriel romance was just a bad idea. Some people have complained about the cross-species aspect of it, but that’s not really the point because there were a couple of Elf/Man romances in Tolkien’s work. It’s the fact that this was between an Elf and a Dwarf that annoyed me–Elves and Dwarves had been enemies for centuries; that was why Legolas and Gimli’s friendship was so remarkable. Including this romance was not only pointless in the extreme, it also diminished the special friendship between Legolas and Gimli.

Smaug, on the other hand, was the best part of the movie (with Bard the Bowman a close second)! Benedict Cumberbatch has the perfect voice for the role. Smaug, Beorn, Radagast, and Bard were the bright spots in a movie that was kind of disappointing in spots, and I hope they do a better job with There and Back Again.

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Happy New Year!

2014 is now upon us, and only time will tell what kind of a year it will turn out to be. There’s not as much to be excited about at first glance since Doctor Who‘s 50th anniversary year is over, but at least Sherlock returns to our screens tonight! And speaking of Sherlock, I saw its two main actors in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug earlier today; I’ll be posting my thoughts on that a little later.

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“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” Credit Song: “I See Fire”

It was about this time last year when we first heard the haunting melody of “The Song of the Lonely Mountain”, which, in my opinion as a huge Tolkien nerd, was one of the best songs from either The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings. In keeping with tradition established last year, we now have an advanced preview of the credit song for The Desolation of Smaug. This one is titled “I See Fire” and was written and performed by Ed Sheeran.

I must say the title is appropriate, considering that Smaug makes his big debut in this installment, and he certainly was known for his fire. However–to my musically untrained ears, anyway–the song doesn’t quite feel as though it fits in Middle-Earth. All of the others, from “May It Be” to “The Song of the Lonely Mountain” sounded as if they had been born in Middle-Earth and belonged more there than they did here. “I See Fire” sounds a bit too…pop to me. That doesn’t change the fact that it’s a pretty awesome song, though.

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Filed under National Blog Post Writing Month November 2013, Reviews

Burglars and Dragons

I had several different ideas for today’s post, but after the latest sneak peak of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, I knew I had to share the fun.

We get to see more of Bard the Bowman (yay!), and we see that the massive spiders showed up to crash the party, and Beorn’s in bear mode and looks pretty mad, and Sauron’s eye shows up, and, and, and…annoying divergences or not, THIS WILL BE EPIC!!!!

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Filed under National Blog Post Writing Month November 2013, Reviews