The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies
I always hope that parents do their best to encourage their child to be an artist. All it takes is one good idea to expand into something big; something that’s so masterful that the art itself becomes another world. This I refer to is Middle Earth of the Lord of the Rings books. J. R. R. Tolkien barley escaped death in WWI to start on The Hobbit, the beginning idea of something that was going to have life of it’s own. The books have picked up cult status in the 1960’s, but when the movies came out, the series had suddenly exploded into mainstream popularity.
The fan base has grown so large, then when The Hobbit trilogy was announced, the crowd was so hyped up that they assumed that they were going to receive more then a fantasy film; they were expecting something that was going to push what we call magic on the silver screen and even offer philosophical ideas we’ve never considered before. When the film consensus was good to just okay, I was surprised by much people have translated the idea of okay to really bad. That’s certainly not that case; it’s just that no matter what any Hobbit movie would pulled off, it was not going to match The Lord of the Rings. So let’s take one last descent into Middle Earth with The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies.
Beginning where the last movie left off, the dragon Smaug is now flying out of the Lonely Mountain to wreck havoc on Laketown. Two dwarves are still down there while the rest and Bilbo are back within the mountain. Local townsman Bard manages to kill the dragon by striking it in it’s one weak point, making for a great opening sequence.
Anyway, Bilbo Baggins (played by Martin Freeman) has found the Arkenstone, the same thing that the dwarves have been searching for among the dragon’s treasure. The leader of the dwarves, Thorin, has succumbed to the dragon sickness of greed and flat out refuses to share the treasure or even leave the mountain. This doesn’t please the Elves, including Legolas (played by Orlando Bloom), and townsfolk of Laketown looking for shelter. At the same time, Gandalf the wizard (played by Ian McKellen) manages to escape his prison to warn the others of the incoming Orc army that also wants the treasure. It’ll be hard to determine who will claim the mountain, but Bilbo may have a helping hand thanks to his new ring.
The Hobbit has finally ended and I think that this is that last time we’ll venture into Middle Earth for a while (with Warner Brothers, of course it’s never over). The road has been a bit bumpy but people seems to be satisfied enough with these movies, even if their not at good as The Lord of the Rings. Return of the King and Battle of the Five Armies are similar finales with a lot of action and plenty of goodbyes. Now which one is better?
It should be a no brainer that Return of the King did it masterful, so toping it was out of the question. But Battle of the Five armies really tries. For pure popcorn entertainment, I definitely got what I wanted. The action and look of the film all pay off is some CGI environments that Maleficent should have done. The cast here also continues to prevail, weather it’s Bilbo as a conflicted coward, greedy dwarf Thorin, or a no nonsense wizard Gandalf. What’s interesting is that Battle of the Five Armies shares the only flaw with Return of the King; and ending that takes too long to end. At least it’s not as long, so it’s not too much of a complaint.
I’ll give this four and a half Arkinstones out of five. Desolation of Smaug was my favorite of the Hobbit movies, but this closes the book nicely as well. Those that don’t like fantasy will not be swayed here, but I thin few people are going to hate this story. The Hobbit will probably not be as regarded as a masterpiece adaptation, but at most an interesting series of fantasy blockbusters.