Reviews of Movies, TV shows & metro Detroit Restaurants

Short movie & TV show reviews and metro Detroit restaurant reviews

Friday, January 11, 2013

Movie Review: "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" (2012)

I am a bit biased when it comes to anything related to "The Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit", so it should come as no real shock that I really liked "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey." It's probably my favorite movie of 2012...I'll decide that a bit later, so look for another blog post regarding what my favorites were (I'll probably wait until the Oscar nominations to finalize that list). And there have been a lot of great movies this year, especially movies released at the end of the year.

Peter Jackson's latest Middle Earth adventure does not disappoint. He has taken the world he created for the LOTR trilogy and has built upon it. 
And the visual effects seem to be a notch above the LOTR movies, as well they should be due the improvement in technology since those movies came out.

UPDATE: I first saw this movie at the IMAX in 3D, but not in the controversial 48 frames per second format. I then saw it again in the higher frame rate & loved the movie even more! The higher frame rate gives the movie a more realistic feel, almost as if you are watching it on stage in some instances. I really hope more movies start being filmed this way, as I really enjoyed it.

So what did I like about this movie? What DIDN'T I like!? OK, so the movie starts essentially where "The Fellowship of the Ring" movie starts off, with Frodo & Bilbo preparing for Bilbo's birthday party. But then it goes back 60 years to the "An Unexpected Party" with Thorin & his dwarves and the adventure begins. We soon meet trolls, elves, goblins, orcs and of course...Gollum. The scene where Bilbo meets Gollum is probably the best scene of the movie as it is essentially lifted right from the book...and it's a wonderful scene that should warrant an Oscar nod for Andy Serkis, but we all know that won't happen. How these two characters play off of each other is fun to watch. I also enjoyed the scenes with the trolls...

Jackson takes some liberties with the story, but they work with respect how it all ties back to the LOTR movies/books. The most notable liberties (without spoiling anything) are taken while they are in Rivendell, with Radagast the wizard's story and Thorin's backstory. True Tolkien nerds will probably complain, but again, the liberties don't take away at all from anything & I truly believe they add to the overall experience.

This is a much more lighthearted movie than any of the LOTR movies, as it should be since "The Hobbit" is a much simpler, lighter story. It has some dark moments, but it also has some fun, humorous moments. I am looking forward to the next installation since there are parts of the story that I cannot wait to see on the big screen.

I believe this was a fun, adventurous, well-made movie...9.0/10 stars

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