Rob goes to the movies: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

Really, I'm not being paid for this.
Really, I’m not being paid for this.

Although I’ve never read the books, I loved Peter Jackson’s the Lord of the Rings movies So much, that I’m one of those viewers who wishes they were  actually longer (yes, even longer than the extended editions).  watching those movies, I was thoroughly convinced that Middle-earth was a real place – and that these movies were filmed there.  In fact, not since the original Star Wars have a I had a movie-watching experience as fulfilling as the first time I saw “The Fellowship of the Ring”.   So it goes without saying that this review may be a little biased.

One thing to keep in mind is “the hobbit” is a different, smaller-scale story than the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy.  The book on which “…Hobbit” was based is around 300 pages.  Excluding it’s appendices, The Lord of the Rings clocks in at well over 1100 pages. At times, it is a more light-hearted, and slower-paced story, the last hour of “An Unexpected Journey” is  just as intense as any sequence of the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy.

For the techies: I saw the movie in 3D (my first choice, 3D IMAX, was sold out). One of the things I loved about LOTR is how real things felt. When I first saw those movies, everything – the scenery, the clothing, the weapons, the makeup and the special effects all looked like a very real, very lived-in place. I didn’t have that feeling this time. I particularly noticed with the scenes set in The Shire.  Computer generated monsters and parts of scenery jumping in and out of the screen in 3D only reminded me that Middle Earth doesn’t really exist.  I have heard that the HFR format provides the best 3D effects.   If I see it again in theaters, I’m definitely seeing it in 2D.  I like the idea of suspending my disbelief when watching a movie.  The easiest format is that which most movies of the last 100 years have been shot in:  2D, 24 FPS.

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