Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

If you want some background on how deeply disappointed I have been in the Hobbit trilogy, see my previous reviews:
There and Back Again
The Desolation of Smaug
If you don't want to wade through a couple thousand words of complaints, this is the relevant line from the second review: "I no longer have faith that the completed trilogy will be at all worthwhile."
It is not worthwhile. The best thing that can be said for this movie is that it was not as bad as the second one. That, however, it not saying much. As a whole, the trilogy is fully on a level with Episodes I-III as far as magnitude of disappointment. Perhaps more, because we have the book to compare it to, so we know what we could have gotten. And perhaps less, because we still have the book, whole and unspoiled, and the hope that some day someone might make a decent film adaptation of it.
Now, this movie does have some decent moments. Most of Bilbo's scenes are actually tolerable. Richard Armitage, as Thorin, is pretty great at acting like a gold-crazed lunatic. Some of the fight choreography is quite nice. And that's it.
All the putrescent bloat that Jackson infused into the first two movies bubbles over into this one: unnecessary romantic sub-plots; needlessly altered timelines; Azog, who should be decades in the ground; Radagast, who somehow STILL has bird crap in his hair despite everything he's been through; Legolas fan-service; almost everything about Lake Town, especially the Master and his minion. Tall things continue to fall in unlikely ways. Fight scenes continue to be ridiculously contrived.
And - this paragraph contains minor spoilers - parts of the movie are simply nonsensical. For instance, the Dwarves dress up in some (pretty awesome) armor for the standing-around-and-posturing part of the movie, and then ditch the useful things, like the plate and the helmets and most of the shields, and instead go to battle in chainmail. Which, well, chainmail is okay. It's not as good as plate, but it's still armor. Except this chain closes like a vest, with most of the middle of the chest exposed. Who thought that was a good idea? Another example: at one point the Dwarves need to do some rock-climbing, because Jackson is obsessed with tall things, and there are orcs on the heights, who somehow built huge signal flags without anyone seeing. At any rate, they acquire riding goats. And these riding goats are completely awesome, but where did they come from? We already saw the entire Dwarf army arrive. Dain has his (also awesome) war-boar, but everyone else was on foot. And yet somehow four riding goats appear out of nowhere, exactly when and where the heroes need them, outfitted for war and minus riders. Huh.
Physics is repeatedly and egregiously violated, most notably in the beginning of the movie, in the interaction between Bard and Smaug. Bows do not work like that. Wood does not work like that. String does not work like that. Generally, matter does not work like that.

At any rate, it's probably clear by now that I did not like this movie. I watched it because I needed to see this thing all the way through, and the best thing I can say for it is that it is done and over with.

Performance: 3.5/5
Plot: 1.5/5
Production: 3.5/5
Overall: 2/5
Bechdel: Fail
Reverse-Bechdel: Pass
Mako Mori: Fail
What are these?

1. Boyhood
2. Guardians of the Galaxy
3. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
4. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
5. X-Men: Days of Future Past
6Edge of Tomorrow
7. The Fault in Our Stars
8. Lone Survivor
9. The Wind Rises
10. The Maze Runner
11The Amazing Spider-Man 2
12. The Lego Movie
13. Lust For Love
14. The Grand Budapest Hotel
16. Hercules
17. Fury
18. Big Hero Six
19. Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
20. Maleficent
21I, Frankenstein
22. Monuments Men
23. Knights of Badassdom
24. Divergent
25. Brick Mansions
26. 300: Rise of an Empire
27. Godzilla
28. RoboCop
29The Giver
30. Winter's Tale
31. Interstellar
32. Transcendence
33. Noah
34. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
35The Legend of Hercules
36. Need For Speed
37. 3 Days to Kill
39. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

No comments:

Post a Comment