toomuchnoiseblog

Film Reviews and Discussion.

The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (2013)

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Peter Jackson, Martin Freeman

****
Director: Peter Jackson

Duration: 161 minutes (US/New Zealand)

To those who are excited and invested in the series, it is time to dust down any anticipation. The wait is over. The second instalment in the Hobbit franchise is finally upon us.

Following on from ‘An Unexpected Journey’ – where introductions were made to Martin Freeman’s Bilbo Baggins, along with a not-so-merry troupe of Dwarves (like a clan entirely made up of Sleeping Beauty’s ‘Grumpy’) and the welcome return of the ever reliable Gandalf – ‘The Desolation of Smaug’ continues their trek for the Dwarves reclamation of Erebor. Their MO and pledge is to usurp the dragon from the Lonely Mountain and retake their homelands.

First things first, this film will not convert naysayers. It’s okay. Really. Let them go. This review is going to be directed towards the congregation and the choir.

Things start promisingly. In stark contrast to the flabby opening to the previous film, this is taut. It launches off the blocks quicker than a hungry Usain Bolt in search of a food line. The trademark sweeping and swooping camera accelerates into the thick of the action more or less from the get-go.

Sadly, what is initially welcome, begins to outstay its welcome. The relentless action overwhelms the narrative. Monotony creeps in, and concerns begin to flicker that there is a fault with the engine. Some of the hectic scenes dash and zing with the fluidity of a powered-up turbo-boosted character in a computer game. Technically very good. There is an awe induced over how it could possibly have been captured… Awe with thoughts about mechanics is not the same thing as awe with abandonment of thought. Such an awe does arrive though. When it does, in the latter half of the film and amongst a stronger narrative grip, it forces an upright shift into the back of the chair and attention undivided.

Suddenly, the film snaps into life. It strides forward with flamboyance, panache and a strong supply of moments to take the breath away. Moments to dazzle children and moments to make adults feel young once more; to rekindle any lost magic that they may have had with the cinema. There are dizzying tumbles, salivating beasts, orcs-aplenty and even a dragon that unintentionally infers the spirit and delivery of Scar from the Lion King. Except, this Scar gets centre stage, in everyone’s face and possibly under the skin even further. He possesses vitriol, fire and cunning. He glides and goads. He slithers and taunts, and all this is carried out with a bundle of venomous guile. It is fair to say this dragon, the titular Smaug, is a thing to marvel.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Ian McKellan

What about the feel of the film? Well, there is a true portent and a genuinely brooding foreboding; a darkness that renders other fantasy epics akin to child’s play. Star Wars wishes it had the gumption to venture to this shade of black. In fact, this sequel makes Empire Strikes Back look more like Baby Got Back.

The other question on our lips is, ‘do we miss Gollum?’ Well, it is hard to say. He is not a part of this picture and his brief appearance almost stole ‘An Unexpected Journey’ from under Bilbo’s nose. However, the (ultimately minor) faults at the heart of this feature lie with other issues, as outlined above. Moreover, Smaug is a compelling argument as to an able replacement.

As the film heads into the shadow of 3 hours, proceedings are halted abruptly. Matters do not draw to a close with humble dampening of activity, no. They build to a thunderous crescendo, with a sharp intake of breath, and the stoking of an unquenchable thirst for the third and final instalment.

How does he do it? In terms of fantasy films, he makes a strong case as the one director to rule them all. Yes, against the odds, Jackson has done it again.

Here is the trailer for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug;

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

FILM, FILM and even more FILM! Toomuchnoiseblog is a place for film reviews and discussion. Latest film releases to the cinema and through to DVD and Blu Ray. From American cinema to Asian cinema to European cinema and everything in between. In a nutshell, toomuchnoiseblog is the place for film goers and cinema lovers.

RSS Film News, Reviews and Discussion

  • Kevin Spacey Fields Questions that Female Celebrities Get Asked On the Red Carpet 05/03/2014
    If we’ve learned anything from House of Cards, it’s that Kevin Spacey is skilled at being terrifying. He’s also skilled, we now know, at answering the types of questions female celebrities get asked on the Red Carpet. At the Oscars on Sunday, BuzzFeed threw a series of inquiries at the actor focusing entirely on his appearance and not at all on his work or h […]
    Samantha Grossman
  • Yum-Eh: Watch A Supercut of the Most Awkward Meals in Film History 08/12/2013
    Just in time for a holiday meal with your family, Slacktory has released a supercut of the most awkward meals in cinematic history, including uncomfortable dinner scenes from everything from Annie Hall to Step Brothers to Eraserhead. Is your family supper any more uncomfortable than the one from Lars and the Real Girl where Ryan Gosling’s character forces hi […]
    Melissa Locker
  • Yes, Nicolas Cage Really Did Just Win China’s ‘Best Global Actor’ Award 09/10/2013
    Correction appended, Oct. 10, 2013. It has been decided. China has named Nicolas Cage the Best Global Actor in Motion Pictures at the Huading Awards. And as far as anyone who has seen the actor’s YouTube reel entitled “Nicolas Cage Losing His S***” or is a member of the sub-Reddit group “One True God” is concerned, it’s about time. Cage did win an Oscar for  […]
    Laura Stampler
  • Movie Blogger Dials 911 Over Cell Phone Use in Theater 11/09/2013
    Film critic Alex Billington couldn’t bear sitting through a press screening at the Toronto International Film Festival while a nearby audience member blatantly emailed and texted throughout Ti West’s horror flick, The Sacrament. The cinematic faux paus irritated Billington so much that after complaining to theater managers proved unsuccessful, he called the […]
    Courtney Subramanian
  • NextDraft: Yahoo Buys Tumblr, Prompting 40 Million 20-Year-Olds to Ask: “Ya who?” 20/05/2013
    Let’s Get Ready to Tumbl Today, another large deal was made in a bid to make history in the Internet championship of the world. In this corner, we have Yahoo, an aging heavyweight with a new, compelling CEO looking to get some youthful power in her knockout punch by adding Tumblr, a young company run by a young high school dropout-turned programmer-turned CE […]
    Dave Pell
  • Reading While Eating for Mar. 25: Darlings of the Dance 25/03/2013
    Florida Gulf Coast University Takes NCAA Tournament By Storm. The 22-year-old Ft. Myers-based college became the first No. 15 seed to reach the Sweet Sixteen, taking out Georgetown and San Diego State University over the weekend. (Keeping Score) Is the Political Debate Over Same-Sex Marriage Over? It may well be, regardless of the two landmark cases that the […]
    Eric Dodds
  • Seven Things You May Have Missed at the Oscars 25/02/2013
    Toilet Humor: The Onion, America’s finest (fake) news source, is in hot water this morning for its vulgar tweet about Beasts of the Southern Wild‘s adorable star, Best Actress Nominee Quvenzhané Wallis. The offensive tweet has been deleted, but you can see a NSFW screenshot of it here. (The nine-year-old could very well have seen it too; she’s on Twitter at  […]
    Olivia B. Waxman
  • WATCH: 300 Movies in 7 Minutes: The Ultimate 2012 Supercut 18/12/2012
    Cinematically speaking, 2012 was a bit of a wild card year. For every moment of pure cinematic brilliance and originality (think films like The Master, Life of Pi and Beasts of the Southern Wild), vieweres also had to sit through such boring, bloated blockbuster fare as Battleship and Total Recall. Yet in the hands of video editor Gen Ip, a.k.a. Genrocks, th […]
    Melissa Locker
  • Reading While Eating for Oct. 9: Ruffled Feathers 09/10/2012
    In today's must-read links for your lunch break: The Big Bird saga ruffles more feathers.
    Tim Morrison
  • Friends of ‘Sam Bacile’: A Who’s Who of the Innocence of Muslims Film 13/09/2012
    UPDATED: Friday, Sept. 14, 2 p.m. An Internet clip of an amateurish, virulently anti-Muslim film called Innocence of Muslims is being identified as one of the flash points behind the anti-U.S. demonstrations in the Middle East that led to the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others in Benghazi, Libya, earlier this week. As journalists work to unco […]
    Nick Carbone and Madison Gray
%d bloggers like this: