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Minas Tirith Forums » New Line Cinema's Hobbit » Reviews (Page 5)
Author Topic: Reviews
Madomir
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quote:
Nor is he ever described as being "fair",
I'd settle for him looking human. The original point still remains, PJ don't do subtle. Whether it's his own lack of comprehension or perhaps a lack of respect for the audience, assuming they're too shallow to get it, I don't know. I just know that he never seems to miss a chance to over-do things [COUGH] avalanche of skulls [/COUGH].
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Maia Olorin
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I agree, and it does show his shortcomings as an artist. However, given the state of popular culture these days, the movies certainly could've been worse had he or anyone else at the helm wanted to pander even more.
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Numenorean Sword Trainer
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eldon:
quote:
I've seen the Hobbit twice now and say the movie is worth the price of admission for the New Zealand landscapes alone.
I'd agree... if the story were set in New Zealand. But there's something about rocky scrub-country and badlands that just doesn't say "Western Europe" to me, any more than the same was supposed to be the grasslands of Rohan where the plains grew thick with it up to a rider's knee... a horse would starve on what we see on film!
Even if he didn't break a hoof or leg on all those rocks by some strange chance.

Edit: As for he MoS, he was a Numenorean, so there's no reason he'd look any different from the other Numenoreans (i.e. tall, pale-skinned, dark-haired, grey-eyed)... certainly there was no mention of it worth thinking so. The Witch-king was also a Numenorean, and he looked similar when Frodo saw him as "The Pale King."

[ 01-19-2013, 12:27 AM: Message edited by: Numenorean Sword Trainer ]

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Roll of Honor pi
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PJ often does not follow the book, but just as painful to me is the feel of his films. His lack of subtlety glaringly stands out.
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Maia Olorin
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quote:
I'd agree... if the story were set in New Zealand. But there's something about rocky scrub-country and badlands that just doesn't say "Western Europe" to me, any more than the same was supposed to be the grasslands of Rohan where the plains grew thick with it up to a rider's knee... a horse would starve on what we see on film!
Even if he didn't break a hoof or leg on all those rocks by some strange chance.

 - []
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Roll of Honor Sauron's Secret Agent
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quote:
but PJ's Mouth doesn't even appear to be completely human
Madomir, please feel free to accompany me to one of our local supermarkets any Friday afternoon. You will eat your words!
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Roll of Honor The DarkQueen Iauraearien
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quote:
I'd agree... if the story were set in New Zealand. But there's something about rocky scrub-country and badlands that just doesn't say "Western Europe" to me
I'm sure Western Europe no longer looks how it did when Tolkien wrote TH/LotR. New Zealand is beautiful and has many places which are relatively unspoilt. Did Tolkien ever actually say it was meant to be Western Europe anyway?

quote:
any more than the same was supposed to be the grasslands of Rohan where the plains grew thick with it up to a rider's knee... a horse would starve on what we see on film!
Even if he didn't break a hoof or leg on all those rocks by some strange chance.

I dare say that not ALL of Rohan was grasslands of that height. It'd look a bit ridiculous if you got to the borders then suddenly *PHWUMP* grass up to your eyeballs! []
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Tigranes
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quote:
I'm sure Western Europe no longer looks how it did when Tolkien wrote TH/LotR.
Depends on the place, really. Many locations have been visually destroyed by industrial agriculture, power lines, and the recent windmill (AKA bird shredder) hype. However, there's still some places left. And there is Eastern Europe and adjoining regions which could serve as stand-in for the rest.


quote:
New Zealand is beautiful and has many places which are relatively unspoilt.
The same applies to South America or Antarctica though. Also, NZ is by no means unspoilt. It has in fact been largely de-spoiled by the subsequent waves of Maori and English/other immigrants. All her terrestrial megafauna are dead (they used to have giant eagles, until the Maori wiped them out), and many of the endemic animals have been wiped out. Also, there have been changes to the landscape.


quote:
Did Tolkien ever actually say it was meant to be Western Europe anyway?
I think there was something in the direction, maybe in one of the letters. Anyhow, we have many descriptions (too many, if you ask the casual readers) in LotR and other ME works of plants and animals that are all distincly European, or should I say West Palearctic. Plus the cultures which are based on European/Mediterranean cultures.


quote:
I dare say that not ALL of Rohan was grasslands of that height. It'd look a bit ridiculous if you got to the borders then suddenly *PHWUMP* grass up to your eyeballs!
True, some of Rohan was also riverside lowlands with willows and some sort of agricultural usage. And the south is supposed to be thickly forested mountains. In the PJ adaptation, the place where Helm's Deep is situated is a sub-arctic wasteland, the kind of which you'd see in South Georgia or on Iceland.
Thing is, to sustain a force of large and powerful warhorses, you need a good food source. Steppe ponies can subsist on much less, but that's not the kind of breed Rohan is famous for. So yeah, the terrain does matter.

[ 01-19-2013, 11:50 PM: Message edited by: Tigranes ]

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Roll of Honor The DarkQueen Iauraearien
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quote:
All her terrestrial megafauna are dead (they used to have giant eagles, until the Maori wiped them out)
At least they HAD giant eagles. Surely that just proves that NZ = ME. []
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Numenorean Sword Trainer
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quote:
Did Tolkien ever actually say it was meant to be Western Europe anyway?
Yes. He said Middle Earth is Europe, and the scenes shown in The Hobbit took place in the western part of it. However PJ, of course, thought he knew better than Tolkien.
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Maia Olorin
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Poor dead horse....
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Roll of Honor Sauron's Secret Agent
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quote:
He said Middle Earth is Europe, and the scenes shown in The Hobbit took place in the western part of it. However PJ, of course, thought he knew better than Tolkien.
If Western Europe was still as it used to be, I would agree with you. As it is not, then New Zealand makes a beautiful and photogenic substitute, without the need for editing out industrial artefacts.
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Tigranes
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Well it's not as if we were living in a post-apocalyptic wasteland either. There is still a sufficient number of places to shoot the film IMO.


quote:
At least they HAD giant eagles. Surely that just proves that NZ = ME.
Argh I guess I was hoisted by my own petard here. Still, Haast's Eagle wasn't quite as big as the ones in LotR. []

[ 01-20-2013, 07:06 PM: Message edited by: Tigranes ]

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Madomir
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I consider myself somewhat of a purist, and I know JRRT didn't have New Zealand in mind as he formulated Middle Earth. However, with the seemingly never ending list of things I can't stand about what PJ has done, I've always found filming in NZ to be one of the least objectionable.
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Cernunnos
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One of the ironic things about the wonderful NZ landscapes, I've thought more than once, is not just their resemblance to the Misty Mts, but the finding of a place or places domestic and 'cosy' enough to be the Shire - a fair substitute for the traditional rural England it was based on.

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Whereas the light perceives the very heart of the darkness, its own secret has not been discovered.

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Numenorean Sword Trainer
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Here's a description of Rohan:
quote:
Gandalf spoke now to Shadowfax, and the horse set off at a good pace, yet not beyond the measure of the others. After a little while he turned suddenly, and choosing a place where the banks were lower, he waded the river, and then led them away due south into a flat land, treeless and wide. The wind went like grey waves through the endless miles of grass. There was no sign of road or track, but Shadowfax did not stay or falter.
‘He is steering a straight course now for the halls of Théoden under the slopes of the White Mountains,’ said Gandalf. ‘It will be quicker so. The ground is firmer in the Eastemnet, where the chief northward track lies, across the river, but Shadowfax knows the way through every fen and hollow.’
For many hours they rode on through the meads and riverlands. Often the grass was so high that it reached above the knees of the riders, and their steeds seemed to be swimming in a grey-green sea. They came upon many hidden pools, and broad acres of sedge waving above wet and treacherous bogs; but Shadowfax found the way, and the other horses followed in his swath.

Now, does that conjure up the following image to you?

 -

A poor film-maker will say "it doesn't matter, the audience doesn't know anyway," but that's what separates mediocrity from excellence IMHO, i.e. attention to detail and the author's vision.

For example, Éomer says to Aragorn "‘Since the day when you rose before me out of the green grass of the downs I have loved you, and that love shall not fail."
But in the movie, Aragorn simply calls out from a pile or giant boulders that he's hiding in. There's no mention of those anywhere in Rohan.
And if that's "beating a dead horse," then go ahead and call Alpo and Elmer's Muselage because there's plenty where that came from.

[ 01-22-2013, 08:14 AM: Message edited by: Numenorean Sword Trainer ]

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Maia Olorin
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Over how many years and in how many incarnations have you abused said horse? You're a broken record. []

[ 01-22-2013, 07:19 PM: Message edited by: Maia Olorin ]

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Tigranes
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It's valid criticism, and LotR movies could have been done just as well in Europe, Asia, or even North America, which would have been closer to lore. Maybe if you'll accept that, he'll move on and the matter is settled.
You may be annoyed by some dude on the internet bringing this topic up again and again, but believe me it is infinitely more annoying to hear people claim that "New Zealand is the perfect Middle-Earth" everytime LotR comes up in a conversation. The bad part of it isn't that they can't read, it's that they don't know a thing about their natural environment and how it's different from another place thousands of miles away, and they're unwilling to do anything about that.

[ 01-23-2013, 12:24 AM: Message edited by: Tigranes ]

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Madomir
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From The Fellowship of the Ring, Prologue..

but the regions in which Hobbits then lived were doubtless the same as those in which they still linger: the North-West of the Old World, east of the Sea.

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Maia Olorin
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quote:
It's valid criticism, and LotR movies could have been done just as well in Europe, Asia, or even North America, which would have been closer to lore. Maybe if you'll accept that, he'll move on and the matter is settled.
You're making me responsible for his behaviour? Sorry, I don't accept that responsibility. It is, imo, a silly prerequisite for a movie adaptation, that it be filmed in the land where it was set. How many times have other cities, such as my hometown Montreal for instance, been used as a stand-in for New York, etc? Answer: many times. How many scenes from countless movie adaptations have been shot in places other than the locations set forth in the books? Why, some are even shot on soundstages, without any actual locale used at all! The horror! OMG!

Look: nit-pickers are gonna pick, haters are going to hate. One might as well have an argument about whether the Elves had pointed ears, or whether the Balrog had actual wings, etc. I have better things to do. I am certainly no Jackson fanboy, and there are certainly things I don't like about his adaptations, but picking at picayune details is for people with OCD. []

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Roll of Honor Athene
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Look, I love Tolkien but the man had a ridiculous hard-on for a Britain that not only didn't exist in his time, but had never really existed. I note that none of the hobbits were dying of diptheria or malnutrition, which would have been the actual fate of the rural poor for most of the pre-industrial era.

His romanticised view of bucolic life is not based on reality, now or then. For Christsake, he grew up in Birmingham! I live near Birmingham, it is basically Third Age Isengard with better shopping. I'm not saying that the films couldn't have been filmed elsewhere in Europe but they couldn't have been filmed here. Not unless you wanted the hobbits to be trekking along the the M40 to get to Rivendell.

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Roll of Honor Éomer
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If MT had a Like feature I'd have used it on both of the previous two posts. I couldn't agree more with either of you. []
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Roll of Honor The DarkQueen Iauraearien
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[] Athene.
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Aiwrendel
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We now return you to your regularly scheduled topic - The Hobbit movie Reviews []

I finally saw An Unexpected Journey in 3D last weekend. I didn’t plan, and didn’t want, to see the 3D version but it was the only one playing. I found the 3D effects gratuitous and distracting. There was no real point to taking my mind off the story with clouds of fluff floating around me and arrows whizzing 2 inches past my face except pure exhibition for its own sake.

I think the movie was fine in its own right as a fun, silly action/adventure and I would have enjoyed it as much as I liked the Raiders of the Lost Ark movies but I couldn't because it was NOT The Hobbit story. Still, it had parts that were very much like the book which I found gratifying.

I think it lacked one thing that would have vastly improved it: More battle scenes. []

[ 01-25-2013, 12:29 AM: Message edited by: Aiwrendel ]

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Madomir
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I felt the same way about the original trilogy Aiwrendel . Had I not read the books I would have found more enjoyment in the movies for what they were, instead I found myself lamenting them for what they weren't.
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