Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Trailer Review

Here is the review for the awesome new Desolation of Smaug trailer, and JT is back to offer his opinion as well in our usual rundown of trailers with HD screen caps. Wow, this trailer is amazing compared to all of the other trailers for either Hobbit film. The tone is darker and more epic, plus there will apparently be a few epic battles. Again the Elves are back, which is arguably just as much a good thing as it is bad. On one hand Elves are cool and Legolas is a fan-favorite, on the other the hand Elves could overshadow the other characters like Bilbo, Gandalf, and Thorin. However, I will give Peter Jackson the benefit of the doubt because he has done well so far. Now there is even more controversy over the addition of Tauriel's character now that she is obvious going to be a romantic interest for Legolas, as well as being an entirely new character not from Tolkien's lore. This change is somewhat similar to giving Arwen a larger role in the Lord of Rings, except Arwen was actually mentioned in the book. The original rumor is that Tauriel was going to be a romantic interest for Kíli or one of the other Dwarves, however that is either going to not happen or there will be some crazy awkward "love triangle" between the character, which I hope is not the case. Now, Benedict Cumberbatch as Smaug sounds awesome! At first I could hardly tell it was Cumberbatch but after listening to it more, his distinct voice was clearly present. Also I really like the part when Bilbo starts to tell Gandalf what he could in the cave, and Gandalf is like "Good, you'll need it." For some reason the inflection in his voice reminded me more of his role as Magneto than Gandalf but it was still cool. As for my anticipation for the movie as a whole, I cannot wait to see it because I am certain it will be better than the first.

JT: By the looks of this trailer, Peter Jackson and crew would rather have us believe Tolkien wrote a story called Elves: The Forgotten Action Heroes (with cameos by New Zealand, A wandering crazy man and a troop of height-challenged guys with beards and huge appetites). But really, kidding aside, this is a very strong trailer for an action epic. If I had no clue what the story was, I would probably go see this movie and like it. However, since I am me and I do know what it's about, I have the usual purist reservations, although to a lesser degree than for the slapstick fumble that was the first one.
Things that are cool: All those random action scenes (basically the whole trailer)! Bilbo! Gandalf! Bard! Beorn! Smaug!
Things that are not cool: Eyebrow shots. Eyebrows that are not the same color as the hair above it; come on, people it's creepy to look at. romance, implied, assumed, imagined, or real. The Hobbit is not the sort of story that likes that kind of thing. Inventing characters, then telling us there would be no romance, then implying that there is, for no reason. Overdone Legolas beatdowns. Yes, it's going to be fun on the big screen, but believe it, shield- and elephant-trunk surfing have denied Orlando Bloom any future credibility as an action star, even in the same role.

JT: There is confusion on whether this Lake-Town, Dale, or Dol Goldur. For my part the question is who's in the boat and I doubt that Dol Goldur has that much water.

James: For some reason I really like Thorin's armor, it looks awesome with the red cape/cloak thing.
JT: I expect a suitably epic Howard Shore theme to accompany this shot.

James: Even more Legolas killing things, did someone forget that he is not the star of the film? Oh wait, he basically is.
JT: That's the problem right there. And no, he will never live down the surfing on the elephant trunk and the shield. Welcome to Legolas Lives: The action movie that should not be.

James: Other than the obvious fact that Tauriel is not mentioned by Legolas in the Lord of Rings, I wonder what dark secret she has that makes it so that Thranduil does not want her to give Legolas false hope.
JT: Can't help you there. The whole being an invented character business is really messing her up. The speculation is that she's simply not worthy to be making googly-eyes at the prince of Mirkwood.
James: Luke Evans as Bard the Bowman looks like he is a cool character, albeit one that still looks like the Pirates of the Caribbean version of Orlando Bloom.
JT: Did I tell you Bard is awesome? Even in his limited role, he's one of my favorite characters.
James: An army of darkness approaches, hopefully the battles in this and third film will be on par with that of the Lord of the Rings because the world needs an epic fantasy battle.
JT: You can have your movie-centric opinion (no offense intended) but actually, making this battle terribly big might just be annoying, since it's primarily just a throw-in to make the move three hours long.

 James: This is literally one of those blink-and-you-will-miss-it type shots with the Eye of Sauron.
JT: What in Middle-Earth is the flaming eyeball doing in the Hobbit movie? Blatant cross-references are not cool. To whom it may concern, the main Hobbit story has nothing whatsoever to do with Sauron, except that Gandalf engineered the quest in order to rob Sauron of the ability to destroy the north with a mind-controlled dragon. 

James: This scene has the type of humor that I like opposed to the slapstick kind that was a little overbearing in the first Hobbit film.
JT: Exactly my thoughts. And if Bilbo's line is "I found it" or words to that effect, this one of those key moments that's dropped in to make the fans cheer. In the story Bilbo claimed he had simply found it w/o mentioning Gollum until much later. But Gandalf knew he was lying and began to suspect that he had the master ring on him.

James: I hope no one has arachnophobia because there are going to be even more creepy spiders in the Hobbit than the Lord of the Rings. Plus, they actually look more anatomically than the Shelob from the Return of the King in that Shelob was more of a wasp hybrid wit the stinger on the tail.
JT: Bilbo is supposed to be invisible! This scene is great b/c of the image you get from imagining a bunch enormous spiders chasing a floating sword.
James: I have no idea what that thing is, but it looks cool.
JT: Well, James, should I explain or not? Most of the readers probably know anyway.

James: The Bard actually has his Bow in this shot. I hope he is as cool as character as he looks.

James: This battle looks like it is going to be epic!
JT: It will also be three minutes or less, because this is a flashback.

JT: Not a great picture of the hoard under the mountain, although it does convey the sense that it's far bigger.
JT: Smaug's head! And he's red. Not what I hoped for but I'm sure it will look great. Is this because he was drawn in red on the map?

James: This is the closet thing we have to a good look at "CumberSmaug," hopefully the future will continue to be this obscure so when he is revealed in the movie in full, it will make for a better effect.
JT: Fear not! The future is only two months long!

What did you think of the trailer? Please comment below.

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  1. BEORN THE BEAR!!...wait, should I mark that "spoiler"?

    Judgmental reservation about Tauriel ;), speechlessly excited about Bard, Beorn, and Smaug.

    1. Yep. Sorry, that's a spoiler. James said he had no idea, so I didn't reveal it. It's going to be awesome anyway.

  2. Totally agree about eyebrow shots and romance. Benedict Cumberbatch's voice is awesome as Smaug!

  3. Great review of the trailer! :D
    I agree about Tauriel; I really hope there isn't any annoying romance in the film since it isn't needed for the film(and I thought Peter Jackson had said she wasn't there to be a romantic interest, so I'm hoping maybe Legolas just likes her and she isn't interested in him; if they're going to add a character, at least have it make sense in the narrative).
    I'm really excited about seeing more of Bilbo, Thorin, Kili, Smaug, Balin, Gandalf, and everyone! :D Smaug looks great and It will be cool to have Martin and Benedict working together in a different story, even if one is a dragon XD. And the Spider scenes is going to be great(really cool scene in the book). :D
    Definitely looking forward to this film! :D Hopefully it's even better than the first :D.

    1. Thanks! :D
      That may be the case, although Jackson certainly wants us to believe that there is a romance between Tauriel and Legolas.
      I agree, I can't wait to see more of those characters! :) I imagine that there will be more fan of Smaug and Bilbo as Sherlock and Watson. lol


  4. *Fangirl squealing*
    Though I love Evangeline Lilly, I am kind of frustrated with her addition in the movie. Same with the other additions.
    I'm going to try to watch the movie as just a movie, not comparing it to the books or other LotR movies.
    But the trailer looks fantastic and parts of it gave me chills.
    I CAN'T WAIT FOR THIS MOVIE. I feel like there is potential for me to hate it, but also love it.

    1. He too, she is not necessary!
      I know, Smaug's voice is bone chilling!


  5. Wonderful rundown of the trailer!

  6. Awesome review! :D
    I cannot wait to see the spiders! They are one of the most anticipated things for me in DOS. Hearing Smuag's voice was awesome! I agree, I couldn't work out if was Cumberbatch's at first (though I knew it was) and the start of the trailer was great as you work out that it's Smaug, Bilbo is talking to. :)
    That line with Bilbo and Gandalf is such fun! 'And what did you find?' and you think he is going to say something about the ring and then he says 'My courage.' Hehe, very funny. Gee, does Legolas need a romantic interest? Tauriel would be a cool character anyway, without that, plus, there are already tons of Legolas fan girls as well. :P
    What the heck is the eye of Sauron doing in here? It does sort of make sense though once you think about it!
    I'm trying to work out why the elves would be helping them, it looked that way from the trailer. In the book they certainly don't like each other.
    I am not 100% happy with a big battle which is not the once mentioned in the book, the difference between LOTR and the Hobbit, I thought was that one is more a singular quest, whereas the other is 'save the world' type thing. :)

    God Bless,

    1. Well, it's been suggested that the battle the orcs are marching to isn't in this film at all, since there is no sign of the rest of the white council.The giant battle is the centerpiece of the unwritten subplot (which Tolkien himself admitted was simply a plot device in the first place.) So there's that.It's also been suggested that "let me help you" has been dubbed over the Thranduil shot just to create speculation. There's no sign of any other indication that Jackson is breaching the canon so badly regarding the elves. 9holding out a little hope for the Tauriel business) As they say, There is always hope


One rule: No strong profanity. If you want to link to one of your posts, please do; I am always interested in other reviews and such.

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