“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”

December 22nd, 2012 at 10:21 am by under A Look at the Movies

Rated PG-13
2 Hours 55 Minutes

Starring: Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Cate Blanchett

I was hoping to bring you some good movie news, but unfortunately “The Hobbit: An unexpected Journey” is hardly an unexpected pleasure. The back story for “The Lord of the Rings” matches the classic trilogy only in the nearly 3 hour running time.

The first of the three “Hobbit” epics find homebody Bilbo Baggins reluctantly joining forces with the army of Dwarfs to help them regain their lost kingdom.

Familiar characters abound as the stunning but overblown production drags its way through one dreary cliffhanger adventure after another. Fans of “Lord of the Rings” will wonder why the Hobbit saga isn’t quite the same pleasurable experience.

Like a feast stuffed with too many calories, the “Hobbit” adventures pack in too many battles, which normally would be welcome, except there’s little else to fill the spectacular landscape. “The Hobbit” proves that even magnificent visual effects together with a lot of stodgy pontificating can eventually become tiresome.

I would have hoped for a lot more from a Director of Peter Jackson’s caliber. “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” is visually filling from emotionally empty. Just don’t expect this epic disappointment to scale the heights of middle earth beyond 2 stars.

Apparently Gandalf the Wizard failed to conjure enough the right kind of magic to make “The Hobbit” a holiday delight.

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