Written March 25, 2017
Will someone please explain to Peter Jackson that length does not equal epic!
He we be well served to learn:
Extended chase/battle sequences that do nothing to further the story, do not make the moving exciting.
Added geek fluff (material not in the original book) does not add to the movie (and I'm a geek).
Trust your actors more than your effects wizards. You have such a talented cast given fantastic performances that you have a great movie. Cramming more spectacle in only adds length, slowing the pace and diminishing the heart of the movie. Now, Gollum is an amazing merge of both, but the wargs and goblin caves look like a lame video game.
There. I have ranted. The Hobbit was a beautiful movie with lovely performances, but plagued by PJ's penchant for length. Go see it, but pack a lunch and know that anytime Gandalf says "Run!" you have 5-10 minute to visit the restroom without missing anything.
Written June 28, 2016
Peter Jackson does it again! The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is an excellent movie that takes its time to be true to the book and sets up the trilogy nicely for the next films. The adventure involves a vicious, gold-loving dragon by the name of Smaug, but before we get to his mountain and all that treasure, we get plenty of action involving orcs and, best of all, a younger, more realistic Gollum. This movie is a prequel to The Lord of the Rings (occurs over 60 years prior to the story in that trilogy) and there are several scenes where the two trilogies share characters and mythology. So, it's no surprise that time is spent tying the two together. In my opinion, some of those scenes could've been shorter, or omitted entirely. In fact, you'll find that the first 45 minutes of this film are slow and long-winded. I was still at the edge of my seat from the beginning and am now looking forward to the next two! BTW, I may see it again.
Written October 22, 2016
im not a LOTR fan and didnt really watch most of the movies completely..i didnt know much about hobbit but after the first 30 minutes was of course pleasantly surprised. the journey just got more and more intense, interesting, suspenseful full of action exciting with of course the same characters and some concepts. there were lots of action packed battles, evil people, and really the dwarves there to reclaim their homeland. I had no idea that this was probably the first of a trilogy or more...so i was disappointed to find the ending not really being the ending, however the 2.5 hours goes by really fast...it is an extremely exciting interesting entertaining awesome movie... you can't miss it for sure....
Written July 01, 2016
As a whole, Peter Jackson and cast did a great job with the first Hobbit film. As a self contained movie, The Hobbit was fairly powerful and provided a very rich visual experience (I viewed it in 48 frames without 3D). That being said, the Lord of the Rings cinema enthusiasts might find that the application of CGI was a bit liberal relative to and distinct from what they experienced with the original trilogy. The script and acting were exceptional--a respectable balance between faithfully scripting from the book and giving dramatic hard-hitters like Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman and Andy Serkis a chance to really shine. To comment on the family viability of the film: the level of violence is comparable to Lord of the Rings, but I note this: The Hobbit was scripted with some comedic relief in mind--all the better reason to bring younger siblings/kids if in doubt. To make things brief, I believe that The Hobbit accomplished its goal: recreate the heartwarming but intrepid Hobbit story.
Written March 27, 2017
While it's not LotR, The Hobbit is a wonderful romp through Middle Earth. It is good to spend some time there before the character's hearts grow heavy with the weight of the war against Sauron. Martin Freeman is brilliant as a young Bilbo Baggins, and while it's a bit difficult to keep so very many dwarves straight, they are enjoyable and wonderful to watch as a group.
If you're not sure about the high frame rate + 3D technology, go see it without 3D. It is still beautiful and a very well-told story even without our gimmicky technology.