4/10
A big disappointment.
11 December 2014
Warning: Spoilers
A couple of years ago, when I heard Peter Jackson would direct two more Middle-earth movies, I started crying out of excitement. Those two movies soon got changed into three and I was angry because I was convinced the story was too short for three three-hours-long movies. Despite the book being approximately 300 pages long, Peter Jackson & co. proved me wrong and managed to not include big parts of the books in these movies, even though there's more than 8,5 hours of total screen time. "Disappointed" is an understatement.

I don't think this movie was supposed to make me laugh at the serious scenes and sigh at the 'comic relief' scenes -basically everything Alfrid was in- but sadly it did. At least the 'funny' scenes in the Lord of the Rings trilogy were subtle and less in number; BOTFA was supposed to be "serious and dark" and those silly, ridiculous scenes pretty much ruined that.

I have nothing negative to say about the acting though. The amazing cast of this trilogy did the best they could with the awful script they were given, and I'm thankful for that. It's not their fault that their character development was rushed because the movie was full of pointless Legolas Vs. Gravity scenes, dull Tauriel scenes who fell in love with Kili after having a conversation with him once or twice - same goes for Kili who fell in love with her and even gave her the token his mother, Dís, gave him.

The worst part of this movie isn't even that it's full of badly done CGI or the big lack of proper character development. It's the fact that Tauriel, a badly written, impossible character made up by Peter Jackson & co., had more screen time than characters who were in the actual book written by J.R.R. Tolkien. Beorn basically got fifteen seconds, if not less, screen time in the last installment of this trilogy. Most of the dwarfs from the Company barely got a line, and a LOT of things are left unexplained.

SPOILERS AFTER THIS LINE

For instance, what happened with Thranduil and the white gems? Did he ever get them back?

What happened to the gold? As a fan of the books I already know the answer, but the movie didn't really care to explain this important part of the story. Come on, the entire battle was about the gold. At least take a minute to explain how it got divided.

Where did those goats suddenly come from?

Why were the dwarfs wearing helmets when they were still inside the mountain, but had no helmets on when they actually went to war?

What happened to the people of Lake-Town? Why didn't the movie explain that Bard became King of Dale? If I had not read the book, I'd get really annoyed after watching this movie and not knowing what had happened to them.

What was the point of those ridiculously large worms and why did no one else /ever/ mention them before? And why were they gone after ten seconds? Did they ever get killed?

Why mention Legolas' mother and never explain anything about her at all?

Besides all these unanswered questions, there are certain things which bothered me more than all of those questions combined. 1. The Durins (Thorin, Kili, Fili) didn't get a funeral. In my opinion it's ridiculous to cut something like that out because they were basically the main characters. Which brings me to my second point. 2. I think Peter Jackson forgot that this story is called The Hobbit because Bilbo is supposed to be the main character, not Thorin. 3. Kili basically sacrificed himself for Tauriel which is unforgivable. In the actual story, Fili and Kili died defending Thorin in battle. Now the poor boy is dead because he had a crush on a badly written elf which also completely degrades the importance of Legolas and Gimli's friendship.

Let's not forget about the scene wherein Legolas grabs a flying bat, or when Bard uses his son Bain to shoot an arrow, which should make him fall but somehow it doesn't, or when Dain and Thorin decide to hug in the middle of a battle, or when Azog somehow manages to float and dramatically opens his eyes.

I absolutely loved the Lord of the Rings trilogy. They are my favorite movies of all time and the reason I became a fan of Tolkien's works in the first place. It's sad that Peter Jackson desperately tried to link the Hobbit movies to the LOTR trilogy, because it's partly the reason why the Hobbit movies are so awful. If the unnecessary Dol Guldur scenes and the Tauriel storyline were skipped, every good part from the book which is now cut out would have easily fit in. I'm still giving this movie a 4 out of 10 though, because I absolutely love the cast and I think they did a brilliant job, especially Richard Armitage and Martin Freeman. Also, the very last scene was exactly like I imagined it would be, with Ian Holm's Bilbo and Gandalf knocking on the door. Loved that part. And "The Last Goodbye" by Billy Boyd was a beautiful way to end this movie and trilogy and made me tear up.

You might enjoy this movie if you really liked the first two -I didn't-, if you're into bad CGI or movies that look like video games or if you don't really care about Tolkien's Middle-earth and are content with a movie that doesn't do Tolkien and his characters justice at all. Otherwise you're probably someone like me and you'll leave the theater disappointed and grieving over the characters you love so much.
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