The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)


Pros
  • Thorin's mountain madness is a high point, his descent into madness and mixing his voice with Smaug's was chilling
  • Another cool 'cameo' appearance by Sauron and his dark forces
  • Actually, the whole rescue scene of Gandalf was the best part of the film
  • I enjoyed how they toned down the silliness from the first and second films (mostly from cutting out most of the dwarfs)
  • There are some solid moments of entertainment during the battle scenes and the Smaug scenes
  • I felt the movie was the best of the three films from this trilogy, this features the most action and emotion (mostly from the love triangle)
  • Legolas finally runs out of arrows!
  • The music is still pretty damn good (The Shire music is my favorite and it appears in the film thankfully)

Cons
  • The Smaug storyline comes to an end in the first 15 minutes of the film, why could this not have been included in the second movie?
  • Once the battle begins for the mountain, it flat outlasts too long, it was overkill
  • The CGI is overkill, what made The Lord of the Rings trilogy so great was its costume design and scenery (and many other things)
  • I had a problem with how 11 dwarfs somehow manage to turn the battle around and defeat their enemies when they were ridiculous outnumbered
  • They try to make a cool mention of Aragorn but don't the events from The Hobbit take place before his time? '60 years' according to Viggo Mortensen who turned down a cameo solely because of this reason
  • The overall intensity of the movie is significantly less than LotR because in this tale they are fighting for a measly mountain vs all of Middle Earth
  • Come on, they were so far outnumbered it was ridiculous, at least in LotR an entire army came to their aid verses 11 dwarfs!!

Score: 6/10

The Battle of the Five Armies marks the end of Peter Jackson's second trilogy in Middle Earth and it could not have come soon enough. This trilogy was average at best average and nothing compared to the original trilogy, Jackson seems to have lost his magic. But getting that out of the way I think Five Armies is the best from this new trilogy, it features some solid action scenes and more emotion than the previous two. Though the action went on for too long, it was still a very welcomed given the previous two films. There is something entertaining about watching a group of diverse people (elves, men, dwarves etc) all battling it out. And of course Thorins madness and obsession with his mountain and gold was great to watch. But the movie does have quite a few faults, mainly to overuse of CGI. Too much of the scenery was fake, as well as every single character on the enemy side. There was a reason Sir Ian McKellen broke down on set, it was because he realized he was merely talking to a green screen. Jackson completely dropped the ball here, the costume and makeup design from the first trilogy were something special and noticeable. Here, the movie comes off as too fake for its own good, even if it is top of the line CGI. As for the story aspect, the movie managed to conclude the journey on a decent note, nothing more, nothing less. Nothing to brag about, but it brought an end to character relationships and multiple story lines, some more than others (Tauriel anyone?). As for the overall experience, as I said, this was my favorite from The Hobbit Trilogy. That being said, I will most likely never watch any of these films from beginning to end, the same cannot be said about the vastly superior The Lord of the Rings trilogy!

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014) on IMDb

Comments

  1. It was a fine ending to a trilogy that, quite frankly, could have been better. But could have also been a lot worse, too. Good review.

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    1. Yeah the trilogy in my eyes was very rough and nothing special (I haven't rewatched the first two since I saw them in theaters), but like you said it definitely could have ended way worse! Thank you!

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  2. Aragorn would have been in his 20's at this time, so Viggo made wise choice turning down a cameo -- no way they could have made him look that young, even if he does age well! I don't know if he would have been so well known at that time though. I definitely agree with your thoughts on the CGI -- practical effects are always the best way to go if it's possible! I liked this for totally different reasons from you, but I did like it about the same. I'm so glad they were made, but they'll never compare with the greatness of The Lord of the Rings! Good review!

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    1. Really? I could have sworn I read these events take place before he was even born?! I'm probably wrong though! I'm a bit more bitter towards the series than you, I would have been fine if the whole series wasn't even made. They were all very age to poor in my eyes. I think it was mostly because of the characters and like you said, the CGI took away the magic. Thanks Sarah!!

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