I will admit I was the girl in high school who went and saw the Fellowship of the Ring in theaters fourteen times. I swooned over Legolas and had ever single elven line memorized. The beautiful scenery and magical landscapes transported me. I knew every secret grin and all the bloopers (like the car in the background that they edited out for the dvd version). I was in love with the way the movie was so elegantly adapted from the book. And then the second movie was released. I went twice. I only went to the third one once. I will admit it. I was extremely disappointed with the liberties taken with certain characters and the plot, particularly with Faramir. I think I only ever watch the complete set again once or twice since they were all released on dvd. I will maintain the only adaptation that stays the course was the BBC audio version. This was something I listened to over and over as a child and it definitely stays truer to the original books.
Now this might seem like old news. But as you may have heard The Hobbit trailer was released earlier this week. I wasn’t sure I wanted to watch it, but it had been reshared so many times on Facebook that I was eventually sucked in. I was nervous that more liberties would be taken and yet another beloved tale by Tolkien would be ruined. I still have these fears, to be quite honest. But what I saw from the trailer made me just a little bit excited again.
It’s that excitement I used to get when the theater went dark and the opening credits began to roll in Fellowship of the Ring. First, I was glad to see that they seem to have gotten enough of the actors from Lord of the Rings back in order to keep continuity. And the opening of Hobbiton has the same feel as from LOTR as well. While I know the book is definitely more light-hearted than LOTR, it still takes it’s environs seriously and all the mythology behind the world is the same, obviously. I was a little worried about the dwarves in this trailer because their makeup isn’t entirely convincing to me. Gimli from LOTR LOOKS like a dwarf. I can’t tell he’s just a man with a mask on. However, some of the dwarves that flashed on the screen in this trailer definitely look like they have makeup on. I’m hoping that it’s just the close-ups they chose and not somethings that’s going to stick out throughout the films. Thorin does look good though, and seeing as he’s the big hauncho dwarf I can see why he got the most attention in his details.
Okay, I am a sucker for good music scenes. I am especially fond of folk music in the sense of traditional music for a culture. The dwarves singing literally sent shivers up my spine. THAT is the magic I am looking for in capturing Tolkien’s work. That is the sort of thing that can’t be completely transmitted in writing and is best displayed on the big screen or over audio. And if I have no other reason to go see this movie next December, it will be to witness the entirety of this scene.
I will also confess another reason I will be going to see this movie next December is the actor they got for Bilbo. I could not put my finger on where I had seen him before, except I knew it was something to do with murder mysteries and the BBC. Martin Freeman, it turns out, plays Watson in one of my favorite adaptations of Sherlock Holmes: Sherlock. Yes, I have seen Sherlock several times over and I still didn’t recognize my favorite character because he is just so convincing as a hobbit.
Speaking of actors it gets even better. Just glancing at the IMBD’s website, it appears the Benedict Cumberbatch will be voicing Smaug, who happens to be Sherlock Holmes in the very same Sherlock I mentioned above. Both Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch filming for this movie explains WHY it has taken them so long to release another season of Sherlock. AND another actor… drum roll… Stephen Fry will be making an appearance as the Master of Laketown. I do love the actors the UK has produced- amazing talent.
So, there it is- The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will premier next December the 14th. I guess I’ll mark my calendar now because I think I’m going to have to see it. I am giving Peter Jackson a chance to redeem himself and prove to me that his movies are worth watching more than once. If he pulls this off, I’ll be back in theaters next winter break and maybe surpass my fourteen viewings record. Or not. I’m not sure I have the stamina I did in high school.