Movie Review: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Orlando Blood as Legolas with bow & arrow action in The Hobbit 2: Desolation of Smaug

Based on: J.R.R. Tolkien's novel "The Hobbit"
Rated: P13

Genre: Action, fantasy, adventure
Running Time: 161 minutes
Director: Peter Jackson
Writers: Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Guillermo del Toro

Cast: Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Cate Blanchett, Orlando Bloom, Ian Holm, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, Elijah Wood, Andy Serkis, Richard Armitage, Jed Brophy, Adam Brown, John Callen, Stephen Fry, Ryan Gage, Mark Hadlow, Peter Hambleton, Stephen Hunter, William Kircher, Sylvester McCoy, Bret McKenzie, Graham McTavish, Mike Mizrahi, James Nesbitt, Dean O’Gorman, Lee Pace, Mikael Persbrandt, Conan Stevens, Ken Stott, Jeffrey Thomas, Aidan Turner, Luke Evans, Evangeline Lilly, Barry Humphries, Billy Connolly

Synopsis: “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” continues the adventure of the title character Bilbo Baggins as he journeys with the Wizard Gandalf and thirteen Dwarves, led by Thorin Oakenshield, on an epic quest to reclaim the Lonely Mountain and the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor. Having survived the beginning of their unexpected journey, the Company travels East, encountering along the way the skin-changer Beorn and a swarm of giant Spiders in the treacherous forest of Mirkwood. After escaping capture by the dangerous Wood-elves, the Dwarves journey to Lake-town, and finally to the Lonely Mountain itself, where they must face the greatest danger of all—a creature more terrifying than any other; one which will test not only the depth of their courage but the limits of their friendship and the wisdom of the journey itself—The Dragon Smaug.

Release date in Malaysia: December 12th 2013
Distributor / studios: Warner Bros. Pictures / (multiple)

Watch the trailer

Verdict: Less walking and more action but the plot's overreliant on convenience (again) and a little too unnecessarily draggy in the final third with Smaug the dragon, which starts to show that it's obviously too much to adapt a single little book into three two-hours-plus films. Nevertheless, The Hobbit 2: The Desolation of Smaug is somewhat more compellingly fun than the previous film, despite the smaller number of new places and characters involved. It's good enough, at least, to make me want to watch the final instalment. The CGI of certain creatures and characters are still not significantly improved but fangirls would definitely be pleased with the amount of screen time that Legolas (Orlando Bloom) gets, just plainly playing cool and being pretty. If you're hoping to see Smeagol the Gollum well then I'm sorry to say that the previous film is perhaps his only appearance in this trilogy.

The Hobbit sad Golum meme

Second opinion: My girlfriend has slightly different opinions. She liked it, she agrees that there's less walking, also adding that it's not too "sien" (boring), the CG's quite good and the action scenes are cool.

The level of convenience in The Hobbit 2: The Desolation of Smaug:
Just so happens that almighty wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen) has to go away and leave the dwarfs and Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freedom) on the their own for the quest which he started. Just so happens that the spiders that catch them don't hurt them and prefer to wait before eating them. Just so happens that every time they are in massive trouble and about to die, Legolas (Orlando Bloom) and Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly) come to the rescue in the nick of time. Just so happens that the elves protect them from being killed by the orcs for unknown reason even when they are breaking out of their prison. Just so happens that Tauriel falls for beardless dwarf Kili (Aiden Turner) and because of that, goes after them to help them.When the bunch are in need of weapons and transportation, they bump into Bard (Luke Evans), who somehow just happens to be around where they are (and never again in the rest of the story) when no other soul is. Just so happens that the dragon Smaug (Benedict Cumberbatch) does not kill Baggins even though he knows he's there to steal the Arkenstone. #JustSoHappens

Gandalf remains to be my least favourite character in this trilogy... 
Gandalf The Hobbit asshole meme



Malaysian censorship: Nothing was censored at the press preview, not even the sequences with orcs being decapitated.

To pay to watch? It's always recommended to catch Peter Jackson's work at the cinema, regardless of whether it's good or bad 'cause the visuals and settings have never failed to amaze. However, I wouldn't recommend watching it in IMAX 3D as the depth wasn't impactful to me but the film was shot in 3D HFR at 48fps (very high frame rate), not converted. The sound, however, seemed fantastic. This film's the second ever movie released in Malaysia with Dolby Atmos surround sound experience available so perhaps you might wanna check it out at GSC 1 Utama.

Rating: 3.5 / 5

Movie stills & pictures: View 'em here!



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2 comments:
  1. i saw this too at UK but no go watch lo~

    ReplyDelete
  2. You had dwarf spelled wrongly somewhere #grammarnazi

    And most of my friends commented that Sherlocks, I mean, Khan, I mean Smaug is very cheong hei, and boh song the cliffhanger. LOL

    ReplyDelete

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