Critics Consensus: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Is (Mostly) Worth the Trip

Summary

This week's lone wide release is the The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, starring Martin Freeman and Ian McKellen in Peter Jackson's hotly-anticipated return to the Lord of the Rings universe. What do the critics have to say? Back to Article

Comments

Jay Kennedy

Jay Kennedy

There's a lot of fun in the Hobbit, but there's also a lot of dredge too. I think just shy of 70% is bang on for this feature. Not a lot of critics are going to be able to get past the 48fps offered in this...it was sure hard for me to over look the video gameness of it. And although I didn't feel it drag, I can absolutely see how others would.

Dec 14 - 04:08 AM

Danny K Cabrera

Danny K Cabrera

change is always hard for the close minded.

Dec 14 - 09:16 AM

Stepping Razor

Stepping Razor

You're close-minded if you think that's a waterproof argument. That's a very simplistic, narrow-minded one.

Not all changes are good; nor do we have to accept all changes. People, if they don't like certain changes, can and should voice their opinions.

Dec 14 - 03:28 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I agree. Watching the movie in a few hours, but I'm aquainted enough to read reviews without worrying about spoilers. I reject critics who blanket complain about the changes. Some are more thoughtful in judging the changes in the overall story arc. I'm not quite convinced yet. I am glad to see many things that were not in the original book that were only hinted at. I think theres only a couple of things that were wholly invented.

Dec 14 - 04:22 PM

Ed-Ted Crump

Ed-Ted Crump

Critics hate unexpected/unpatronising film layouts. Many supremely good films are dismissed simply because something more than the attention span of a spoilt child is required. Personally I find unique film progression and layout refreshingly unpredictable and enjoyably unfamiliar. It draws me in.

Seeing as this is pretty much the only real criticism being made at large, aside from it not being as epic as LOTR which obviously it's was never even supposed to be, I'm not going to be put off by the almost predictably fickle reviews. Any review of a film related to LOTR that isn't "LOTR again but bigger, better and louder" was always going to suffer bad reviews.

Of course, I am speaking without seeing at this point. But there is nothing being mentioned that sounds like it will disappoint me.

Dec 14 - 04:20 AM

Jay Kennedy

Jay Kennedy

There's certainly a lot of parts that were created specifically for the film, other parts taken from the lotr appendices & two new story lines added to create a more "prequel" feel to it. It's certainly more than The Hobbit story we all know.

Dec 14 - 04:26 AM

Matthew Macdonald

Matthew Macdonald

The trailers arent in 48fps so its not that !

Dec 14 - 04:51 AM

Christopher Kulik

Christopher Kulik

Joe needs to bake some pizza rolls and watch the Plinkett reviews.

Dec 14 - 05:25 AM

Thom Stone

Thom Stone

bahaha! exactly!

Dec 14 - 01:16 PM

Zane B

Chum Chum

This made my day so far

Dec 15 - 11:26 AM

Christopher Kulik

Christopher Kulik

I bet Rick Berman ruined the Hobbit too: fuck you Rick Berman!

Dec 17 - 12:29 PM

Matthew R.

Matthew Reimer

I'm still seeing The Hobbit no matter what the critics say.

Dec 14 - 05:37 AM

Daniel Irwin

Daniel Irwin

Now that's what I call a movie-goer; always use your first instinct and make the choices that fit you best.

Dec 14 - 02:39 PM

Jonathan Yung

Jonathan Yung

Keep in mind that 69% isn't a score on the quality of the movie, just the amount of critics that enjoyed it. There's a whole spectrum of people who liked/loved it and those who dislike/hated it.

Dec 14 - 06:28 AM

Stepping Razor

Stepping Razor

That's a very complex perspective for many mainstream moviegoers to understand.
They love to bash "all critics," just as they did with Avengers. A relatively small handful of critics disliked the movie, while more than 200 gave it a positive view.
But in the minds of the fanatical, mainstream moviegoer, "all critics" hated Avengers.
I guess they wouldn't be happy unless more than 100 percent of critics praised the movie.

Dec 14 - 03:30 PM

Luchie Marumahoko

Luchie Marumahoko

Ok, so took some time to actually skim over the reviews and the major things coming out IMO is the pacing, I felt the same when I read of initially of plans to make it a trilogy and secondly the duration of the first film itself. Was also shocked to note that is actually has a rotten rating amongst top critics. As a personal choice, I have confidence in the Tomatometer, it has seldom let me down.

Dec 14 - 06:37 AM

Jay Kennedy

Jay Kennedy

Totally agree with you here Luchie, I do depend on the Tomatometer for what to see in theatres and what not to see. I enjoyed the film when I saw it, but yes the pacing and the 48fbs left little to be desired. But overall it was still a good story worth telling.

Dec 14 - 07:26 AM

Jay Kennedy

Jay Kennedy

Totally agree with you here Luchie, I do depend on the Tomatometer for what to see in theatres and what not to see. I enjoyed the film when I saw it, but yes the pacing and the 48fbs left little to be desired. But overall it was still a good story worth telling.

Dec 14 - 07:26 AM

Phil Alexandre

Phil Alexandre

I went to the midnight showing, and honestly, I give the movie about 8/10. The CG was great, but because of the frames per second, you could REALLY tell when it was CG. Or even when Gandolf is standing beside the others, it looks pretty bad. In all honesty, it actually ruined the movie a bit more than I expected. The CG looked like it didnâ??t belong in SO MANY places, that it stole the attention away. However, the movie was way better than the previous 3â?¦combined (donâ??t hate me). It wasnâ??t the long 3 hours of walking that I expected (since the other LOTR movies were mostly like that).

The movie itself was action packed, so the 3 hours really did fly by, butâ?¦ like the other movies, it could have ended about 3 or so times and it would have been complete. The characters didnâ??t really match up with what I expected; Golem was brilliant and so was Gandolf and the Drawf king (not spoiling anything). Oh and the way it ended was great except Gandolf again failed to prove he was as epic as the watchers wanted to believed. (a funny video of what I mean http://www.cracked.com/video_18504_why-gandalf-most-overrated-wizard-ever.html)

It did have the classic â??epicnessâ?? that has come to be expected when you film in New Zealand, but was it worth filming this 45mm? I donâ??t really think so. I am used to high refresh rates, so I wasnâ??t fazed by it, but so many people around me kept complaining that it was way too swift. Again, it took away from the CG, but added a crazier more realistic feel too the movie with the fly-bys. Also the 3D was off quite a bitâ?¦ but that may have been the theatres fault, not the Hobbitâ??s.
All in all, a good movie, but honestly, under delivered� and yet at the same time delivered enough that it was worth seeing� just on a matinée though.

Dec 14 - 07:39 AM

Benjamin L.

Benjamin LaLonde

I don't see people putting down Gone with the Wind for being long or boring, or any good story for that matter. For all the critics putting the movie down for being boring, go watch some lame action movie like Green Lantern you no-nothingers. The reason The Hobbit is slow is because it's ACTUALLY a good story and good stories don't just jump right into it (an art that's been lost for some time now and I praise Peter Jackson for being persistant in). The Hobbit mixes beautifully both sides of action, story adventure, and even some humor from the book. I feel like I got to see an extended edition without having to wait for it to come out on dvd. I personally have the patience to wait 1 year to see this fantastical book to movie rendition of Tokein's genius continue on film as it only becomes darker and more epic as the Necromancer is revealed! :)

Dec 14 - 07:45 AM

Christopher Kulik

Christopher Kulik

GONE WITH THE WIND is the epic to end all epics.

Dec 14 - 10:27 AM

Logan L.

Logan Locke

To be honest, the most important thing about long movies for me is, not just the material, but the pacing. There have been movies that have long run times that, while they might have great acting, directing, etc, their pacing is sluggish. Now don't get me wrong, Films like The Godfather and Citizen Kane are slow paced films that I love, but it is hard not to fault anyone for not liking them because of their pacing. It does not mean they do not like films of that nature however. Take for example me: I have seen The Godfather and The Deer Hunter. Both excellent films, as well as long. The Godfather is the better of the two in a technical sense, with better acting and directing, and a stronger script. Yet I have watched The Deer Hunter more than the Godfather, because I enjoy the film more due to it's pacing. Does that mean I have poor taste in films? That's a matter of perspective. And while this post does not cover all the arguments(such as the Tomato meter and what-not), I felt it neeeded to be said.

Dec 14 - 08:25 AM

Bobby Lucas

Bobby Lucas

Uh Oh. Gotta be a little bit worried about this one.The first red flag that was raised for me was when Del Toro 'bowed out' as director. Gee...could it be he had no intention of milking the franchise by padding out what should have been a 3 hour film into a 9 hour, 3 part 'epic'? Mr. Del Toro's leaving the project makes alot more sense now. I was perplexed when I first heard that Mr. Jackson was planning on stretching 'The Hobbit' into a 3 part epic. Hasn't he heard the term 'if it isn't broken-don't try fixing it'? I see many people arguing over this 1st entry of The Hobbit, and IMO the bottom line here is this film DID NOT have to be extended and loaded with filler which never even appeared in Tolkien's book in the first place. It just seems a bit ridiculous to me and smacks of the filmmakers trying to fleece the fans of the LOTR Trilogy for their hard earned cash. And that's coming from a huge fan of the original trilogy. 3 books-3 movies. Makes sense. One book:THREE movies? WTF? I'm not buying it folks...but let's hope I'm wrong--I'd like to say I enjoyed this movie! Now, bring on Pacific Rim!!!

Dec 14 - 09:13 AM

tyswade

Tyler Slocum

"Does that mean I have poor taste in films?"

Not really, cause it's how you managed to still be entertained and believed its pace, whatever the runtime was, was worth your money.

And thanks for saying it without being an ass who thinks he's funny and gets his jollies off starting a pointless argument.

Dec 14 - 09:15 AM

Danny K Cabrera

Danny K Cabrera

change is always hard for the close minded.

Dec 14 - 09:16 AM

Stepping Razor

Stepping Razor

You're close-minded if you think that's a waterproof argument. That's a very simplistic, narrow-minded one.

Not all changes are good; nor do we have to accept all changes. People, if they don't like certain changes, can and should voice their opinions.

Dec 14 - 03:28 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I agree. Watching the movie in a few hours, but I'm aquainted enough to read reviews without worrying about spoilers. I reject critics who blanket complain about the changes. Some are more thoughtful in judging the changes in the overall story arc. I'm not quite convinced yet. I am glad to see many things that were not in the original book that were only hinted at. I think theres only a couple of things that were wholly invented.

Dec 14 - 04:22 PM

Diane Lindsey

Diane Lindsey

Read all of the below. I agree with Jeff. Also, I loved a movie the critics hated, and waiting too long to see it on a smaller screen, so next time, I will keep my own counsel as to whether I like a movie or not. I actually trust the regular folk that watch movies as they are not inhibited by a newspaper. Uh and Jansen, you really did overreact to Jeff's comment.

Dec 14 - 10:07 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Sorry, I only respect the views of people who spell my name right.

Dec 14 - 12:58 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

Grammar/spelling-Nazism, the last bastion of a desperate man. Ya know, about the dozenth time you have to chastise people for not having a sense of humor you should probably start considering the possibility that you're not as funny as you think you are. On the subject of the movie...The Hobbit was a good movie, but you'd have to be extremely naive to believe that good is good enough or that comparison's aren't going to be drawn to LOTR's. Especially the way Jackson made this movie shoehorning in characters from the previous series. I'd have preferred they used some of that time to develop the new characters. 13 dwarves and only one of them, maybe two got any kind of character development. There was just kind of a been there feeling to this one for me. He should have either made The Hobbit or made a LOTR's sequel. He tried to do both and it didn't pay off. I do have hope for the next few because the movie came alive and was fresh with Radagast and Smaug who I have to figure have big roles in the next two movies.

Dec 16 - 04:26 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Well, aren't you a fountain of humor!

Dec 16 - 04:44 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

Believe you me, when I'm trying to be funny you'll know it because of the sharp pain as your sides burst.

Dec 16 - 06:26 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I'm laughing pretty hard at "Rock of Ages". Does that count?

Dec 16 - 11:18 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

Depends, the musical is actually pretty funny. The movie with Tom Cruise is kinda shit.

Dec 17 - 07:28 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

I think its a terrible comparison to. The Shorter Cut to Aliens is far superior to the Bloated version Cameron put out as a Directors Cut. Sorry if someone else has all ready brought up this Obvious Fact.

Dec 14 - 10:25 AM

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