A review of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Here is my initial impression of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. You've had to wait a while, I know! But here it is, at last. If you have not seen the movie yet, beware of SPOILERS!
When I sat down in the theater at 11:00 pm (yes, that's how excited I was - an hour early!) to see The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, I was excited and hopeful. Excited about the new characters, creatures, and places our heroes would encounter, and hopeful that The Desolation of Smaug would not only be better than the slightly-disappointing An Unexpected Journey, but also capture some of the essence of the old Middle-earth we all love so much from The Lord of the Rings. The actors are more than excellent in the various roles they play, Smaug is magnificent and evil, and the landscapes are breathtaking. However, while I would say The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is twice as good as The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, it still falls short of the extremely high bar set by The Lord of the Rings.
Peter Jackson is attempting to re-create a world from memory that he has not visited for ten years. The actors are older, the technology has improved, and what people want to see at the movie theater is different than what it was a decade ago. Besides, the story of The Hobbit is also very different from The Lord of the Rings: lighter, more fun, an adventure - not a quest to save the world. It makes sense that the movie adaptions of these books should be as different - if not more - as the books themselves. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug overall is much darker than An Unexpected Journey, but it does not have the same intensity, the same life-threatening world-dooming situations The Lord of the Rings has. It is, after all, a simple "hobbit's tale." I think we have to take it at face value. Comparing the movie to the book which (spoilers!) is not followed closely at all, or The Lord of the Rings will in the end only disappoint us. I prefer not to be disappointed, so I focus on the good things about The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug: It is fun, adventurous - a really-good action movie. I definitely recommend seeing it at least once, if not more.
If you were a little disappointed about this review's brevity and want to hear more about the different topics I just touched upon, fear not! More is coming. Christmas vacation is coming up, and I will have plenty of time to write about The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. In the meantime, if you have a question, comment, of complaint, be sure to leave a comment at the bottom of the page!