“In a hole, in the ground, there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.”
In 1937, the world was greeted with these words for the first time by author J.R.R Tolkien, when The Hobbit was first published. Now, 77 years later, the final installment of this epic journey has made it to the big screen.
14 Years ago we saw the first journey to Middle Earth on the big screen in the form of The Lord of the Rings. Peter Jackson (director) definitely did not disappoint the fans of the books, and gave us the best possible visualization of Tolkien’s world, using the most recent technologies and wonderful actors and actresses.
Now, 14 years after the release of The Lord of the Rings on screen, Jackson takes us back to Middle Earth one last time to finish The Hobbit series.
Smaug (voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch), after being defeated in Erebor by the Company of Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage), exacts his revenge by attacking Laketown, giving the Dwarves a chance to reclaim their home. However, Azog the Defiler (Manu Bennette) has his own plans and puts them into motion to destroy the line of Durin once and for all and claim Erebor for evil.
Dwarves, Elves, Men and Orcs all fight for their own claim on the Lonely Mountain in the greatest battle that Middle Earth has seen since the fall of Sauron. There are, however, two other creatures that help in this epic battle: The Wizard, Gandalf the Grey (Ian McKellen) and the Hobbit, Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman). Gandalf set the company of Dwarves and the hobbit on the quest to reclaiming Erebor and played a vital role in its ending. But who shall win this epic battle? Can just 13 Dwarves and a Hobbit really complete their task and defeat the armies of evil? Or will evil prevail?
In The Hobbit Battle of the Five Armies we see some characters from The Lord of the Rings return for this breath taking prequel. Orlando Bloom reprises his role as Legolas and brings a new side to the ever-loved Elven Prince. In the Lord of the Rings, he started off as nothing more than a simple elf with a dislike to dwarves. As the second Battle for Middle Earth begins, Legolas ends up having the best of friendship with a Dwarf and we see that relationship grow and grow. In the Battle of the Five Armies we see a Legolas who is a proud Elf and seems to want things to happen in an Elven way. Bloom does a fantastic job in playing the role, now that he has gained a lot more experience than he had on the Lord of the Rings and has grown into one very fine, and handsome actor.
Even Billy Boyd, who portrayed Pippin in The Lord of the Rings, manages to make the credits memorable with his very own vocal talent, giving us the song The Last Goodbye.
But for me there is one actor that stands out the most in the final instalment of this movie and that is the Hobbit himself. When I first saw Martin Freeman as Bilbo in the Unexpected Journey, I thought he was a very poor choice for the role of a younger Bilbo. From the first movie there was very little acting skill there and not much energy. However as the first film came to an end and in the next two films, Freeman has definitely proven himself worthy of the role. It is difficult to fill the shoes of an incredible actor such as Ian Holm but gradually we see that he does it magnificently, showing the courage and energy that Holm himself showed us in the Lord of the Rings.
If ever there was an award for scariest moment in the film then this would definitely be given to Galadriel as she, along with Elrond (Hugo Weaving) and Saruman (Christopher Lee), faces an old Enemy. The sheer power of this Elven woman is terrifying and is fantastically portrayed by Cate Blanchett. She definitely holds nothing back in this amazing fight, one that will leave you on the edge of your seat and leave you stunned and amazed.
Peter Jackson has created what I can only describe as the best of century films. Sure others will try and top The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, but they won’t come close to this Masterpiece. This is truly one in a million. Thank you Peter for giving us this wonderful and emotional visualization of the life work that came from Tolkien.
FINAL GRADE: A