Arts and Entertainment

The Hobbit journeys into theaters | Aran Kirschenmann | Movie Review

 

Nearly 10 years after the release of the last Lord of the Rings film in 2003, the much anticipated first installment of the Hobbit came out after years of production. Although the original book The Hobbit came out in 1937, the audience for the soon-to-be three films is enormous.

The story takes place 60 years before the beginning of the Lord of the Rings, and follows the hobbit Bilbo Baggins as he reluctantly embarks on a life-changing and epic adventure. After much convincing by the wizard Gandalf, played again by Ian McKellen, Bilbo joins a band of dwarves determined to retake their mountainous home from a terrifying dragon. Along the way, Bilbo faces numerous obstacles and grows into a valuable member of the expedition.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey was much more lighthearted and fun than the Lord of the Rings films, which are quite a bit darker. It was also very engaging and funny. At times the film seemed a bit too long and dragged out, but it was consistently captivating. The Hobbit had plenty of action-packed battle scenes and conflicts.

Unfortunately, the graphics, which were increased from the standard 24 frames per second to 48 frames per second, occasionally make the film seem more like a video game than a movie, particularly at the beginning of the film. Despite that, the film had amazing landscape shots throughout Middle Earth from the Hobbit’s Shire to the treacherous mountains. The special effects were incredible, and the digital creatures, such as the ghastly trolls, malicious Orcs, and hideous goblins, were fascinating and well done. The 3D effects also helped improve the visuals in The Hobbit.

The Hobbit followed the plot of the book faithfully and was very thorough in including the details, especially because the book was split into three films. It was very entertaining to see classic characters from the Lord of the Rings once again, namely the elf leader Elrond (played by Hugo Weaving), Ian McKellan as Gandalf, and the always show-stealing Gollum. Bilbo’s scene with Gollum in which they challenge each other with riddles proved to be one of the best moments of the film.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is a great start to the Hobbit film trilogy and sure to be a major success. Fans of the book and the Lord of the Rings will undoubtably enjoy finally seeing the Hobbit come to life on screen.

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