ONE MILLION SPOILERS, IF ANYTHING IS UNSPOILED PLEASE EMAIL ME SO I CAN SPOIL THAT TOO.
#1. It’s way too long
Guys, it’s way too long. Like I can’t believe there’ll be an extended cut, because what could possibly have not made the ut for the theater release? I remember there’s a scene where the characters are just rolling around on an obvious green screen stage while CGI giants punch each other in the face in the background.
Let me get this straight, Peter Jackson, you cut Tom Bombadil (and rightfully so) but you keep the battling Storm Giants? I don’t get your directorial decisions sometimes, man.
There’s just a lot of dead weight in this movie which I suspect could be edited down to a 2-3 hour movie rather than three 3 hour movies. Guys, there’s an entire plot line that involves Legolas and Tauriel going North to see the place where Legolas’s mom died, then coming back with no additional information or character development. It just happens.
Also there’s a lot of Legolas stuff in general that doesn’t really matter, but I’ll get more into that.
#2. Who the hell are these dwarves?
After watching the Hobbit it seems like Gimli is the worst dwarf in the world. Each dwarf in the Hobbit is like a Legolas of dwarves, and casually perform feats that really surpass anything Gimli did. There’s the scene where they’re washing dishes which turns into a superhuman feat of coordination and dexterity.
There’s every time they fight. Why do they bother running from orcs and goblins when it’s clear that they can cut down orcs and goblins with ease? Seriously, I remember realizing that killing a CGI orc just doesn’t mean anything anymore after watching this movie. It undercut all the tension from the movies.
Take the barrel scene. They ride down a river in barrels while effortless slaughtering I assume 50 to 60 orcs. The movie is even self-aware in that respect! There’s a scene in the third movie where two characters look off screen and say, “There’s a hundred goblins, should be easy.” The next scene the goblins are all gone. The two characters killed 100 goblins, guys.
I get it, Peter Jackson’s Movie Team, you love Legolas. Seriously, you love him. You’ll love him till the Sun burns out and all life on this world is gone.
I saw it in the Lord of the Rings where Legolas was seriously just better than everyone. He could run on snow. He could kill 1,000 orcs while skateboarding on a shield and he could solo an oliphant. Legolas of the Infinite Arrows was just… so … cool.
So I’m not surprised he shows up in the Hobbit and, if anything, is more powerful? If so that implies a drop off in power by the time of Lord of the Rings. Obviously there has to be some drama right?
So they create some drama. Legolas is in conflict with his dad, the King Fabulous, because King Fabulous is afraid Legolas is in love with the Original Character, Tauriel, but Tauriel is in love with … I want to say Kili? It doesn’t matter. No, seriously guys, it doesn’t matter.
There’s a scene in the second Hobbit movie where Legolas, in a very Hong Kong kung fu movie situation, takes on a ton of orcs and kills like all of them but one. Then in the third Hobbit movie he performs some straight up magic walking on air stuff while battling that same orc that escaped previously.
Oh and that orc kills Kili, probably. Because Tauriel has to be sad guys.
Like 45 percent of this movie is about two characters who aren’t even in the novel. Even King Fabulous can’t save this plotline and he IS this plotline.
Oh and Legolas and Tauriel are like some kind of super parkour gymnasts.
Though you know what’s interesting? Outside of Tauriel, Legolas, and King Fabulous, elves don’t really seem to be that great at fighting. They’re awesome at walking drills and coordinated movements on a mass scale, but really aren’t nearly as good as those three. It’s hard to figure out what’s going on in universe other than the royal bloodlines are just more potent than the commoner bloodlines? That would kind of jive with Tolkien. Oh! Perhaps 99% of the Elves left on Middle Earth are like 4th or 5th generation elves and, like in World of Darkness, that makes them way weaker.
She gets her own section guys. Here’s the thing, I actually like Tauriel. I find her way less annoying than Arwen, and she’s an even more blatant attempt to cram a character into someplace where they’d be relevant. I think what bothered me about Arwen is that they kept trying to say, “She totally matters guys, look how much she matters guys. Guys.” And I’m like… dude, ARARGORNAN son of ARATHORNORNON, did you seriously just have a fake out death scene so you could dream about your girlfriend and make out with your horse?
Tauriel at least could, you know, go places. The romance stuff didn’t work because romances never work in Tolkien? I don’t know. All I know is that Legolas being into her felt totally forced, and her being totally into Kili felt forced too. Everything felt forced.
And then there’s the part where Tauriel, who is basically Legolas Mark 2, gets beat up by an orc and then watches her dwarf boyfriend die. First off, how did that happen? How did any orc manage to even slow down a Legolas level elf? As far as I can tell there’s some serious Hand of Plot going on there and that annoys me because the movie is like, “Isn’t this so moving guys? Guys? Are you crying? I can’t see you so you’ll have to tell me, I’m a movie.”
And anyone expected that to work? Then Tauriel asks King Fabulous about love and nothing matters ever again.
Thanks for including the Big B-man. He was always my favorite character and I was always sad he never showed up in the Lord of the Rings books. Who is Beorn? He’s like this giant guy who lives in a pretty sweet mansion who can turn into a giant bear.
That’s pretty much his entire jam, guys. He’s a were-bear guy. And he shows up at the Battle of the Fives Armies, I assume counting as one army himself.
So you keep Storm Giants punching each other, and twenty minutes of wide landscape shots where nothing happens, and include a chase scene outside of Rivendell which also doesn’t amount to anything or matter, but you CUT OUT ALL BEORN STUFF?
Look, I get it, Beorn is silly in the novels. He’s sort of a more sane Tom Bombadil, but guys, Beorn actually does stuff that matters in the books.
And then they make Beorn all grim and dark and Wolverine. Tortured past! Hates orcs! Used to be enslaved!
Whaaa? Like Beorn gets the biggest character alteration since… hmmm. I want to say since Arwen?
And he shows up at the Battle of the Five Armies. Possibly. It’s unclear because it clearly doesn’t matter to the movie makers.
“We need 70 minutes of Legolas for this movie to work! Cut all that irrelevant Beorn stuff!”
#6. The Battle of the Five Hours
The Battle of the Five Armies, which is kind of an awesome super fight at the end of the Hobbit, is the most boring fight in all six Tolkien movies. In-universe it must be like 19 hours long because it feels that way watching it. Let’s watch two CGI armies battle it out and let’s see everyone being cool by killing orcs but it doesn’t matter. Guys, it doesn’t matter.
There’s also a total sidequest where dwarves ride goats up a mountain to kill more orcs and it doesn’t matter. Armies show up and it really doesn’t matter. The weight of it not mattering was dragging my soul down, dudes. It was heavy.
Massive battles are hard to make in film. Sandworms are cool. Computer stuff is cool. I suspect I get the thinking that led people to believe that this boring super fight could be not boring. But it is. Oh my god it is.
The Eagles show up to save us, the Audience, from the Battle. As far as I can tell the fifth army is us, the Audience, and we’re having a real tough time in the fight. Also there are sandworms. Like from Dune.
Beorn is there. For like 5 seconds. Good thing we have all that King Fabulous, otherwise we might have had to have more than 2 minutes of Beorn…
Humans don’t matter. Humans don’t. Trust me, they do not matter. The Laketowners are basically a refugee camp being fed lettuce by the benevolent Elf White People. Which is extra confusing because King Fabulous was just a super dick to people who needed help in a flashback, so whatever. There’s also like 100 humans in the movie so… yeah, they don’t matter.
Bard also doesn’t want to be king. That I’m just throwing in there because it’s dumb and a waste of time. Bard’s the king after killing the dragon and resettling Dale. Just do it.
But instead we have a human faction that barely qualifies as one of the five armies. In fact, it doesn’t qualify. The movie battle was between orcs, dwarves, elves, and … eagles? It should have been called the Battle of the Three Armies and Eagles and Bats. Oh wait, that’s five…