Tag Archives: peter jackson

Diffident Grandeur

Desolation of Smaug

The Hobbit:The Desolation of Smaug dropped it’s first trailer this week:

And looks substantially more plot-developmental than perhaps the first one was:

http://www.hulu.com/watch/447654

#Trololol.  Literally.  Kinda.  @The_hobbit_blog will keep you updated on all things The Hobbit.  Peter Jackson and crew will more or less be looking for some cinematic redemption after the The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey garnered a lackluster 65% on rottentomatoes.  Which funnily enough is more than we can say for the likes of Zack Snyder’s “Best film to date(56%)”.Desolation of Smaug 2-1

Continue reading Diffident Grandeur

Chivalrous Frivolity

chivalrous frivolity

The Hobbit drops this week and is looking pretty solid:

Which is funny because Warner Bros. was just sued for 80$ million by the Tolkien Estate in regards to “merchandising” specifically some “gambling slots”.

Let’s not dampen the mood however as Jackson and crew seem to have put together another epic fantasy trilogy.  The films are, by subtitleAn Unexpected Journey, The Desolation of Smaug and There and Back Again, due for theatrical release in 2012, 2013 and 2014, respectively.

Early reviews of an An Unexpected Journey have it posted at about a 74%(rotten tomatoes), which let’s be honest is a lot better than I did in high schoolCriticisms of the film mainly dwell in the realm of overdrawn plot schemes, and not living up to it’s predecessor LOTR.  Meaning that those particular reviews came from people who obviously never even read any of Tolkien’s books.

Speaking of which: for those of you who do not know The Hobbit follows titular character Bilbo Baggins as he is bamboozled by his dear friend Gandalf into accompanying a pack of dwarves on a quest to reclaim their homeland.  The novel precedes the Lord of the Rings Trilogy in timeline and essentially tells the story of how Bilbo came into possession of the Ring of Power.

Though reluctant at first, Bilbo’s journey into unfamiliar territory strips him of his proverbial “shell”, and he ultimately finds a side of himself that he didn’t know existed.  Though Bilbo’s enlightening sojourn involved goblins, orcs, dragons, and elves, the experience draws parallels to experiences many of us have in life.  Perhaps the most endearing sentiment found in the novel however is the bond that forms between humble homely hobbit Bilbo and scholarly curmudgeon wizard Gandalf.  Let’s take a look.

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Light-hearted Company

Peter Jackson has faced a reasonable amount of criticism recently for shooting The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in brand new 48 frames per second technology.  Critics of the newstuff got a ten minute sneak peek of the film at this years CinemaCon, and essentially claimed that the films aesthetics looked “TOO GOOD”:

Quote1.pngWhile 48fps may create a more realistic, “you are there” picture quality, it actually works against The Hobbit from the 10 minutes of footage we saw. This undeniable “reality” kept pulling me out of the movie rather than immersing me fully into its world as the Lord of the Rings films did; the very fantasy element, the artifice of it all (whether it’s the wigs, fake beards or CG monsters) was plainly, at times painfully, evident.Quote2.png

Now I’m not a rocket scientist or anything but I’d say that twice the quality of video is a step FORWARD for the movie industry and is a GOOD thing.

Peter Jackson responded to the skepticism by saying that people will simply have to deal with his movie looking “too good”:

Quote1.pngAt first it’s unusual because you’ve never seen a movie like this before. It’s literally a new experience, but you know, that doesn’t last the entire experience of the film; not by any stretch, after 10 minutes or so,” said Jackson. “That’s a different experience than if you see a fast-cutting montage at a technical presentation.Quote2.png

Ya.  You idiots.  Oh.  Did I just say that out loud?  Can Peter Jackson yet again bring us a dope sauce rendition of J.R.R. Tolkein’s absolutely delight-filled and charming classic fantasy novel The Hobbit?  If I was a bettin’ man.  I’d say yes.  Because The Hobbit is literally, figuratively, and arguably one of the best fictional novels of all time.  Ever.  Don’t hold me to that one that though.  As there are some pretty solid stories in book form in the world as we know it.  Like this top 10:

Old Man and the Sea, Of Mice and Men, Lord of the Flies, Pride and Prejudice, 1984, Grapes of Wrath, Hamlet, War and Peace, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Fountainhead

(Post your personal top 10 below!)

WHAT TRULY MAKES a vivid, illustrious, and captivating fictional tale you ask?  Well.  Some would say that it starts with a dense and meaningful relationship between the main characters.  Like for instance the somewhat strained but still very dear friendship between Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf the Grey.  Who?  You ask?  Well.  Let’s take a look.

Rationals and Guardians can indeed make for powerhouse dynamic duo’s, as both of them seem to share an inherent fondness for the structures within societyRationals seek desperately to improve it, while Guardians work tirelessly to preserve it.  Indeed a Rational’s pragmatic, skeptical, and relativistic mindset match up quite well with a Guardians stoical, pessimistic, and fatalistic viewpoint.  The two however do have a bright side, and can sometimes take break’s from their work to sit back and enjoy one anothers company.

Quote1.pngGood morning!” said Bilbo, and he meant it.  The sun was shining, and the grass was very green.

But Gandalf looked at him from under long bushy eyebrows that stuck out farther than the brim of his shady hat.

What do you mean?” he said. “Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?”

“All of them at once,Quote2.png said Bilbo.

— The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkein

Continue reading Light-hearted Company

Adventurous Twosome

Among the many holiday gifts received this lovely season was that of the trailer for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey of course is one of two upcoming films directed by Peter Jackson based off of J.R.R. Tolkein‘s delightful novel entitled The Hobbit. Returning to Middle-Earth after more than a decade, the trailer for the first of the two Hobbit films introduces the new cast of Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) and the company of dwarves led by Thorin Oakensheild (Richard Armitage) and sees the return of some old friends, including the older Bilbo Baggins (Ian Holm), Gandalf (Ian McKellen), Galadriel and Gollum. Given such wonderful holiday entertainment news lets take a look at titular character Bilbo Baggins and his dear and old friend Gandalf the Grey.

Gandalf the Grey later known as Gandalf the White is an Istari, a race of superior men that were chosen to aid the people of Middle-Earth in the fight against evil.  Gandalf has been trying to prevent evil powers from rising in Middle-Earth for over 2,000 years, and does so for good at the end of The Return of the King.  Gandalf is the wisest and most powerful of the Five Wizards, and has spent much of his time on Middle-Earth learning, teaching, reading, and studying. Powerfully intelligent, infamously wise, highly pragmatic, rightfully skeptical, and extremely analytical Gandalf is a dynamic example of a Rational. Indeed Gandalf’s never-ending quest for wisdom and knowledge is undoubtedly that of a Rational.   However, as wise and powerful as Gandalf is: he has no desire for fame or recognition, and is primarily and strictly concerned with the mission he was given to protect Middle-Earth from evil.

Warm and eager was his spirit (and it was enhanced by the ring Narya), for he was the Enemy of Sauron, opposing the fire that devours and wastes with the fire that kindles, and succours in wanhope and distress; but his joy, and his swift wrath, were veiled in garments grey as ash, so that only those that knew him well glimpsed the flame that was within. Merry he could be, and kindly to the young and simple, yet quick at times to sharp speech and the rebuking of folly; but he was not proud, and sought neither power nor praise… Mostly he journeyed unwearingly on foot, leaning on a staff, and so he was called among Men of the North Gandalf ‘the Elf of the Wand’. For they deemed him (though in error) to be of Elven-kind, since he would at times work wonders among them, loving especially the beauty of fire; and yet such marvels he wrought mostly for mirth and delight, and desired not that any should hold him in awe or take his counsels out of fear. … Yet it is said that in the ending of the task for which he came he suffered greatly, and was slain, and being sent back from death for a brief while was clothed then in white, and became a radiant flame (yet veiled still save in great need).

Gandalf’s dear friend Bilbo Baggins, on the other hand, is a very friendly and well-mannered Hobbit who like all his hobbit brethren, is fond of food, drink, a full pipe, his friends and good cheer, and was known for greeting friends and family with hospitality saying “At your service and your families”. Being related to both the Tooks and the Baggins: two family groups that were fundamentally opposite in their mentalities, with the Tooks being more fond of adventures and wandering, and the Baggins who were more fond of the settled life, Bilbo had two different sides to him something he referred to as the “Took side” and the “Baggins side”.  This meant that he secretly relished having adventures but still wanted to remain settled and was very afraid.  Warmly hospitable, extremely dependable, surprisingly courageous, and unabashedly concerned Bilbo Baggins is a classic Guardian.  Indeed Bilbo spends half of The Hobbit voicing his concern and pessimism for the adventure he was forced into, but turns out to be the most courageous and stoic of them all.

“Good morning!” said Bilbo, and he meant it.  The sun was shining, and the grass was very green. But Gandalf looked at him from under long bushy eyebrows that stuck out farther than the brim of his shady hat.  “What do you mean?” he said. “Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?”  “All of them at once,” said Bilbo.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is slated for a December 14, 2012 release.