Fish and Cherries Productions

Creative content from a mad mind.


Reel Snippet – The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies

The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies is a film I enjoyed, but also took a lot of issue with. Of all the movies, I would say that this is the one where stretching out the story to three films really takes its toll, as a lot of it is just one big climax. The final Harry Potter movie did that too, but I felt that movie was a lot better paced. Part of the problem is that quite a bit of the film cut back to the absolutely superfluous character of Alfrid, which was a grating experience that didn’t even have any real payoff.

Still, there were quite a lot of good bits of action… most of the time. However, this is one of the few times where Hollywood’s attempt at bloodless carnage actually bothered me as I didn’t feel a lot of the injuries. I’m not asking for spurting blood or leaking intestines, but when someone gets dramatically impaled through the back and the blade doesn’t come out the other side, it feels fake and it takes me right out of the experience.

And then there’s the gender politics, which are… interesting. I get the impression that the filmmakers want to be progressive, but don’t quite know how. While Tauriel’s inclusion as a love interest is a little suspect on reflection, that’s not what bugs me. MASSIVE SPOILERS INCOMING! DO NOT READ IF YOU WANT TO SEE THIS MOVIE! No, what bugs me is that they didn’t allow her to fulfill her arc and finish off the orc that killed Kili. I like that Kili’s death gave the romance some legitimate tragedy, but the filmmakers completely dropped the ball by not allowing her to avenge him and giving the kill to Legolas instead. I just don’t see the point of creating original characters if you’re not going to really do anything with them.

STILL SPOILERS! Because, honestly, did we really need another scene of Legolas being awesomely perfect? We had three Lord of the Rings movies showing that. Wouldn’t it have been better for him to not be as good as he was in the other movies so that he could have something to work up to? When he started running up the falling wall pieces like they were stairs, I mentally facepalmed and asked if this was real life. For crying out loud, he doesn’t get a single scratch on him after everything was said and done, which really ticked me off. Don’t get me wrong, it was also bullshit when Tauriel walked away from a fall that should have broken her back with nothing but a cut on her face, but at least it was SOMETHING. SPOILERS OVER! READ ON!

Again, I didn’t hate the movie, and my favorite parts might surprise you. I actually really liked the mounts the characters road. It wasn’t just horses, there were giant boars, elks, and mountain goats. They even took advantage of the mountain goats by having them traverse the rocks around the mountain. That was really creative. Thorin’s plight was also very engaging. I don’t know if they had Benedict Cumberbatch dub over him in some scenes or if they just edited his voice to make him sound like Smaug, but it was very effective. Of course, as with the other Middle-Earth movies, the scenery and visuals are gorgeous and breathtaking.

I think if they had put the first ten minutes of this movie onto the end of the last movie, the pacing would have definitely improved, even if it wouldn’t have erased all the problems. It’s a good puppet show, but I’m just a little annoyed that I could see the strings.

Posted under Reel Snippets

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