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Universal acclaim- based on 2388 Ratings

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  1. Dec 18, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Without going into the finer points or minor grumbles I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this film, so much so that even as the final scene faded to black I was still wanting to watch more .
    I wasn't convinced with the start of the film but the pace picks up soon enough and you can just sit back and soak up the story. Golum, as ever is a scene stealer!
  2. Feb 15, 2014
    I don't know why many critics gave this movie a low score. It was long, but it didn't FEEL long. I didn't have a problem with the pacing whatsoever. I wasn't bored at all.

    There's exciting action, along with some good character moments, especially the ones involving Bilbo and Gollum, as well as Bilbo and Thorin. The performances are mostly great, particularly that of Ian McKellen and
    Martin Freeman. The directing by Peter Jackson is, of course, masterful. And the environment itself is beautifully realized. Not to mention the lovely music.

    If you enjoyed The Lord of the Rings, or enjoy fantasy movies in general, this is highly recommended.
  3. Jan 4, 2013
    This is nothing short of the beginning of new Lord of the Rings trilogy, and that's basically the best fact ever, and a total reward to those who love TLOTR. It's all here: the music, the spectacle, and a few returning characters of course. My gripe is that the story isn't pushed along fast enough by the action. Meaning, after a battle not much has changed, and on to the next battle. But enough complaints! I'm back in the world of TLOTR! Expand
  4. Feb 22, 2013
    I was really afraid this 3-movie concept multiplied by Hollywood standards of moviemaking will ruin the ideas and concepts of the book. Yet it was awesome! I could nip-pick a bit, but in fact every scene or event from "There and back again" is in place and they DO work with "injected" Necromancer plot (which existed before that only in additions to LOTR books and was mentioned in two lines at the book itself). So, great job. It could be better but it is still awesome! 9/10. Expand
  5. Jun 28, 2013
    The prequel story to the fantastic Lord of the Rings is here, and it is a great one. It has a different tone than the Lord of the Rings movies, featuring more humor and crazier over the top action. Awesome characters new and old mixed with fantastic writing helped pull me in. It's a enjoyable return trip to Middle Earth, and seeing the events that lead up to The Lord of the Rings is a lot of fun. The action scenes are more absurd than you would expect, featuring impossible odds and goofy set pieces, and the humor is shocking at first, but the fact that this movie has a more light-hearted tone helps it feel more like an adventure. Honestly the movie is awesome and it's the little things that help make it enjoyable. All in all I really enjoyed this movie and I fell that all fans of Tolkien's world of Middle Earth will as well. Expand
  6. Apr 17, 2013
    The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is another great entry into the Lord of the Rings series. It's lighter than the previous trilogy, but that lightness brings with it a sense of fun and adventure. This is a very promising start to a new trilogy and it sits right alongside Fellowship and Two Towers in the quality department... And several rungs above Return of the King, obviously.
  7. Dec 30, 2012
    The Hobbit. Is it worth seeing? Yes. Is it as good as LOTR? No. I think I was just well prepared in that I knew it would be slow at the start and take a while to get going and that its more a kids movie. If you know thats what to expect and love the first trilogy as much as me then I can't see why you wouldn't enjoy this. Martin Freeman is perfect and the return of Gollum is a real highlight. The 3D is brilliant and makes Middle Earth even more beautiful. As with LOTR I'm sure it can only get more epic as the trilogy continues.... Expand
  8. Jan 27, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is regarded by many as the prequel to the Lord of the Rings trilogy; possibly one of the greatest fantasy franchises ever seen, with 17 Academy Awards won across the trilogy and Return of the King being the 6th highest grossing film of all time Expand
  9. Jan 1, 2013
    To be honest, at first I was a little reluctant to spend almost three hours to see thiz movie but I know I will go anyway, just for curiosity
  10. Dec 25, 2012
    OK let me get this straight, the critics gave this a 58 and Django blah blah blah an 80? Something is wrong with that picture. I read The Hobbit when I was about 25 years old and loved it. Here I am now 50 and to see the wonder of the book come right of the pages into a BEAUTIFULLY shot movie and was right on line with the book just gave me chills down my back it was so good. Beside the Avengers, this was the best movie that I have seen all year. I saw Batman, Spider-Man, The Avengers, (you can see what kind of movies I like to pay to see) and then I saw The Hobbit. Wow is all I can say about the movie. It had the heart , look, and story of an epic movie. Wow did it deliver. The critics are a bunch of stupid quacks! Take your family to see this EPIC movie. This is a GREAT family movie! Expand
  11. Jan 26, 2013
    The Hobbit was a good movie on it's own but it sort of ruined the trilogy. it adds in too many things that weren't in the book. i think its **** that we have to watch 3 parts to finish the story, and just for money! i think the fact that they added so much random **** ruins the whole trilogy and ruins what the author wrote. i fully understand that The Hobbit is a stand alone book/movie and not apart of the lord of the rings trilogy, which is also why they didn't need the introduction with frodo and an older bilbo, it was annoying to me to think that they ARE in fact linking the trilogy to the hobbit. the needless intro also ruined the immersion and it felt more like a fake story than an immersive movie. if you read this and thought it was a good movie, i would agree it had it's fine moments, the 3D effect were great and the 48 fps was really breath taking. to make this movie a 7/10 (for me at least) all they could have done is cut out the intro. oh well. Expand
  12. Dec 21, 2013
    All was well until about an hour into the movie and then...BAM!,the text is thrown out the window and the writers are given so-called creative license to write whatever crap they feel will bring in more cash.Azog is dead...Killed by Dain Ironfoot who should appear by the ridiculous 3rd movie) over 140 years before the time of this movie and not by Thorin.That fat goblin is meant to be Azog's son Bolg.The original story covers Bilbo and company escaping from trolls,escaping from goblins,escaping from wargs,escaping from spiders,escaping from elves and that's just before they reach lake town.What's with all the violence?Peter Jackson has gone the way of Lucas,Cameron and Spielberg...So in love with CGI and over-choreographed 'action' sequences that they have forgotten how to make a decent movie.Utter trash. Expand
  13. Jan 27, 2013
    A great looking movie, but more importantly it keeps the feel of the Lord of the Rings trilogy while putting in some of the musical elements which reminds me of the animated film. It has some added plot elements on top of the original story, probably to help them milk a rather short story into multiple films, but since I enjoyed it so much I'm not complaining.

    If you enjoyed the LOTR
    trilogy you will most likely enjoy this as well, unless you're a purist about the original plot from the books or don't really want to watch long, drawn out action sequences. Expand
  14. Jan 15, 2013
    The movie is of well above average quality. I liked the characters, but not so much as the sightseeing, the world of "Hobbit...". I was dissapointed in Thorin and his band, as they try hard to be more than a background to Bilbo, but it comes out flat. Didn`t find them that interesting. It is good that Martin Freeman came through and gave a great performance. The movie rests on his actions so thanks to him ir does a good job showing us a great adventure. I really liked the villains, especially Azog, but all of them are excellent, along with their homes. The music I expected to be top notch and I wasn`t disappointed. The bad think in my opinion are some of the action scenes, which are too much over the top, unbelievable. The dialogues are really good for and adventure - genre movie. 3hours of it didn`t bore me a second. All in all it is a must see lick, although a masterpiece I think it is not. Expand
  15. Jan 3, 2013
    After reading the strangely up and down reviews for this movie, I was very pleasantly surprised. I really enjoyed this movie, and honestly haven't felt such a full movie-going experience since seeing the original trilogy in theaters. My biggest complaint was the insane HD look when seeing it in IMAX, I find that it looks way too real, stealing magic and warmth from the overall look and feel of the movie. Though the special effects were quite impressively real looking to fit in with hyper-real look. Otherwise, I found the story, acting, script, and overall film to be truly excellent. Certainly not perfect, but neither were those LOTR films, people. Expand
  16. Jan 4, 2013
    Overall, I enjoyed the film... BUT, why on Earth does Peter Jackson make some of the changes he does to the story is beyond me! Obviously, some alteration was going to be neccesary... however, some of the changes make little to no sense at all... and are entirely unneccesary.

    Then there is the fact that this was SUPPOSED to be a 2 movie deal until the Studio decided it wanted to make
    more money and stretch it into 3 !@#$% movies! This is why the film is overlong with bloat, bloat, and more bloat! The LOTR was three 3 hour movies from about 1100 pages of source material... The Hobbit films are going to be three 3 hour movies from a little over 300 pages of source material (!?) expanded with additions from the LOTR Appendices. Expand
  17. Jan 6, 2014
    As good a job as Peter Jackson did with the rings, I simply cannot believe he is destroying The Hobbit. The Hobbit is the introductory book to the world of Tolkein and he is crapping all over it. This is, however, the best Harry Potter movie to date!
  18. Jan 7, 2013
    Review based on 48fps non-3d edition as 3d gives me headaches.
    I was very impressed with the LOTR trilogy by Peter Jackson, after being worried after seeing his earlier works...but then as now faith has been rewarded. The Hobbit is pretty much as I would have expected it, it matches most of the previous 3 movies high standards without too many shortcummings to stretch a short kids book
    into another 3 part epic. Lets not forget there is more story and background stuff in "The Hobbit" than all the Harry Potter series put together, so lets look at the main things Jackson got right. 1. 48fps is fantastic and whingers should shut up crying about out of date 24fps formats, though I agree 3d sucks and needs to die quickly.
    2. The story is pretty faithful to the book, and actually improves on some duller bits with some awesome special fx action sequences to pad it out in such a way it feels right at home with the lore.
    3. The acting is fantastic, Martin freeman was the perfect choice, and to have a lot of the original cast show up is also and linking it seemlessly to the LOTR movies is very welcome...
    4. The dwarves... okay they are there to carry the humour, they were written with next to no personality and stereotypical, but it's a kids book remember.

    So why did I only give it 9/10, well some places didn't really need to be in there (Mountain Giants) but they were nice additions for nothing I guess... nobody would really miss having it when the movie is over 2:30hrs long... but I bought the extended LOTR so I want the lot...warts n all lol. So in essence it's a little long for kids to sit through but ideal for the nippers once it's out on Bluray.
  19. Feb 12, 2013
    As the beginning of a Lord of the Rings prequel trilogy, it's pretty good. As The Hobbit (translation of the book), it's pretty bad. It's my hope that after all the movies are out and the Blurays are released that someone will do an epic fan edit so I can actually watch The Hobbit.
  20. Dec 23, 2012
    Endearing characters, well paced, incredibly deep story and action packed.. The hobbit was an amazing movie one fully worthy of standing next to the other three. Whether you're a fan of the book or have never even seen lord of the rings (like my girlfriend) you'll walk away with a filling experience.
  21. Jan 3, 2013
    Now, you're probably pretty skeptical about this movie, it's too long, will you get bored? Is it even that great to watch, it's so long! The answer is yes, it's worth it. The Hobbit does a fantastic job and keeping you entertained despite being so long. There are many great performances and new features in this film to keep you entertained- even though it is a prelude and these new scenes result in a problem as it sometimes goes off track by not following the book well enough. Despite this, it's a great movie overall and you'd want to see it again- in theatures. Now where's my ticket? Expand
  22. Dec 17, 2012
    Push the hype aside and ignore the book, this movie is a very good movie. It is clear expectations were super high and I believe that is where some of the negative scores have come from. No movie will make everyone happy, but this movie is not worthy have very low scores. If this had been the first movie released from the series, fans would have thought they found the greatest movie ever. The pace of the movie is a little slower than any of the LOTR movies, but not as bad as some people say. If you must have action every five minutes, yes, you will be disappointed. If you love the book, this should be a great movie for you. If enjoy fantasy films, this should be a good movie for you. The biggest flaw for me was a few of the actions scenes became too cartoon like. One where the heroes are on a bridge that falls down and they ride it like they were glued to it. Not only was that bad, but it looked like something from a 1970s low budget Sci-Fi movie. Not a worthy scene for the movie. I have read some who complain they do not take the time to get the audience familiar with all the dwarfs in the main group. I do not see how they could have done that without making the movie another hour longer. As far as the format choice, it did not bother me. Yes, it does lack some of the slightly warmer feel of film, but it looks very crisp. I think if no one said anything, most people would not have picked up on the unique format. Bottom line, this is worth seeing in theaters if you enjoy fantasy films. If you are looking for an action packed movie, maybe the next Die Hard can help you with that. s it worth going 3-D, that I do not know. Expand
  23. Dec 31, 2012
    I have to say that ignorance is bliss; as someone who has not read the novel I seemed to enjoy it much more than my friends who had read it. Though it has a slow start, it quickly picks up and entertains all the way through, breaking any tedious moments with riveting special effects or brisk action. I would recommend watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy first so you can catch all the subtle (and not-so-subtle) nods to its sister series. Definitely a spectacular film and looking forward to the next movies. Expand
  24. Jan 9, 2013
    The movie is visually beautiful. It's a new opportunity to revisit Middle-Earth through the mastery of Peter Jackson - but it is not The Lord of the Rings, it's another story, so don't expect the same experience. If only the climax had been Goblin town, the movie would've been better. The HFR version is almost perfect.
  25. Dec 23, 2012
    The 3D and high frame rate were amazing, but other than that and that it was my first trip to Middle Earth in a cinema, it was quite okay. Richard Armitage was the best of the cast, along with Martin Freeman and the eternally amazing Sir Ian McKellen. I loved seeing Rivendell, Galadriel and Elrond, and Frodo too, my only true connections in the movie with the LotR trilogy.
    I enjoyed
    seeing Andy Serkis's performance feeling a lot realer and with a lot more of a "Serkis feeling" than in the trilogy. I can't really explain it, you just kind of felt the person in Smeagol more than you did before. I didn't enjoy the kind of humor they put in the script, which was too 21st-century-esque at times when it should be medieval-like, but it was always funny. The visual effects were obviously much easier to notice with the HFR but I'm pretty sure they could have been better even if not seen in HFR.
    It wasn't bad but it wasn't especially good or unique either if not for the uniqueness of the story. I expected better, but, at the same time, I was somewhat disappointed by the Lord of the Rings trilogy compared to the greatness of the books, so I didn't have the highest of hopes for this one either. A nice show but way too long for 1 in 3 movies...
  26. Dec 17, 2012
    The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is the best movie of 2012, before I watch the movie I thought tha would be not good, because it is inspired in a book that only have 200 pages, but Peter Jackson did a really great job and the 3D it's perfect. The soundtrack is very good. When The movies end I wanted more. And the actors are so good. Martin Freeman and Ian McKellen for me were the best actors of the whole movie Expand
  27. Jan 22, 2013
    The Hobbit is set in the same world as the Lord of the Rings. However, unlike the dynamic storytelling that was in Lord of the Rings, the Hobbit really fails to stand up with the same quality. Many of the characters and bad guys look like plastic CGI characters and fail to bring any amount of believability that Lord of the Rings managed to instill with its costume design. The main Dwarf character is an absolute mirror to Aragorn from the Lord of the Rings and even the main plot diversions follow the same schematic that Fellowship had. (Shire -> Rivendell -> Mountain -> Forest (battle with bad guys)) It really was a letdown compared to its predecessors. However, still a good movie if you are not looking for the same dynamacy of the Lord of the Rings Expand
  28. Dec 26, 2012
    Absolutely brilliant movie that exceeded expectations. Do not listen to the mainstream critics who would give a piece of crap black and white silent french film commenting about the nature of existence a 10 but rate the Hobbit a 5 (Wtf??). If you like good movies, see this!
  29. Jan 28, 2013
    of course it's good. it's primarily good because it makes all the right choices at the right places. the book is much lighter than the lord of the rings in terms of content, so the movie must be too. where the lord of the rings fills up the holes between it's moments of epicness with more epicness, the hobbit fills it up mostly with humour. also, the modern technology helps the world come even more alive. Expand
  30. Dec 19, 2012
    One question most of you are wondering is: Does the Hobbit live up to the Lord of The Rings. The answer is both yes and no. No in that it is not as epic as LOTR (Lord of The Rings) which is almost impossible to do, but is very close. Yes in that it is an extremely enjoyable movie that does well for the franchise. The pacing of the movie starts off slow (similar to the first LOTR) but it explodes into an amazing adventure after a little more than 30 minutes. It is very similar to LOTR in most aspects except that has a lighter and more humorous side to it. It follows the book very well and overall is one of my favorite movies of the year. It's simple: if you loved LOTR, this movie is for you. If you didn't like LOTR, you will probably not like it. I watched the movie in IMAX 3D and found it to be one of the most entertaining nights at the movie theater ever. My only gripe is the CGI doesn't always work. At times it can make the movie look almost cartoony. I wish it were more like the LOTR trilogy. It had a much more realistic feel to it. P.S. if you were wondering, the 3D was pretty great. I thought it was one of the best, next to Avatar. They didn't just add in one or two scenes in 3D. Expand
  31. Apr 1, 2013
    Best 3D effects that I have seen to date! Amazing special effects. But... these 2 things cant save this movie. I found the movie a chore to watch. It dragged on and on. Alot of action, but none were believable nor intresting.
  32. Jul 13, 2013
    10 expectations weren't high enough and honestly i was little scared that it will come out pale repetition of the Lord of The Rings....i enjoyed every second of it and looking forward for the next one....
  33. May 31, 2013
    Way too many gravity defying Disney moments, breaks any immersion film could of had. It's simply over the top and way too cheesy, Middle earth probably has low gravity or something...
  34. Xon
    May 11, 2013
    I was quite weary beforehand knowing that it would be a trilogy. However, all the narrative threats tie together and is pertinent to the wider middle-earth mythos. The vsiual and sound quality is top notch, and the active above reproach. It has neatly set up the story for the next installments and I am definitely looking forward to it.
  35. Apr 21, 2013
    Yes, this film can be very cheesy at times, but it has some of the most honest emotion and most blatant adventuring that I have seen from a film in a LONG time.
  36. Jun 30, 2013
    I`m surprised how good was that. It`s amazing epic journey, that you enjoy. It`s not as big as LotR was, but surely not disappointing. This movie has everything, what you can expected. It`s a side story, whithout ultimate evil and good, but side stories are very important part of any fantasy world, even the Middle-earth. That`s what all Tolkien`s fan knows very well. Every part of movie is done well. Expand
  37. Jan 6, 2013
    Such a great movie, I went in with a skeptical mind and came out pleasantly surprised. I think Jackson has a fantastic start to The Hobbit and I look forward to the sequels!
  38. Jan 13, 2013
    Don't believe the critics! It's strange how they seemed to point out a lot of negative things about this pic, when these weaknesses were always prevalent in all of Peter Jackson's previous efforts: slow pace, overlong set pieces, and the bladder inducing run time of 3 hours. Nevertheless, Jackson's strength as a tent pole director is without parallel: great sense sense of scope, an intricate sense of detail, incredible use of practical / digital effects as well as bringing the best out of his actors / actresses. It's not as good as the LOTR trilogy but that's because the material itself was lightweight in comparison. The Hobbit was meant to be a much more simpler adventure yarn. In this department, The Hobbit delivers. Expand
  39. Dec 29, 2012
    Critics pushed me to write a review. First of all, I must say I haven't read any LOTR or Tolkien books. That being said, I enjoy the world of Tolkien. As a kid I used to play Warhammer countless hours. I am a big fan of the LOTR and the hobbit realy lived up to my expectations. I can somewhat understand why people whine about FPS or "humorous beheading sequences played for cheap laughs" but I gotta say to these people "GET A F**** LIFE*. If you start to complain about little things as such, well I feel sorry for you then. Honestly, I HIGHLY recommend this movie - especially if you like that type of fantasy. I have friend that said this movie was OK but they are more into anime/japanese stuff which I enjoy too. Anyway well done Peter Jackson! Expand
  40. Jan 3, 2013
    After so many years in production hell at MGM with serious doubt over these films happening at all, The Hobbit finally hit our screens, and quite a hit it was.
    If it is at all possible NOT to see Lord of the Rings before you see the new prequel trilogy then do so, because as enjoyable and entertaining as the Hobbit was, it simply wasn't LOTR.
    We clearly see from the beginning of the
    "Unexpected Journey" that these are much simpler times in middle earth, set sixty years prior to LOTR, we see Bilbo almost unwittingly setting out with a set of dwarves led by their King, Thorin Oakenshield, to reclaim the Lonely Mountain, forcibly taken from them years before from the dragon, Smaug.
    An unneccesary forty minutes or so of introduction classes involving the dwarves, Bilbo and the welcome return of Ian McKellan as Gandalf the Grey did seem long-winded, but thats what happens when you split a 310 page book into three films.
    What enticed me about this film, as i was watching the LOTR trilogy a few weeks later, is how Jackson has beautifully bounced them off each other to create an almost parallel world with no stone left unturned, little things such as the orc sword given to Frodo by bilbo makes an appearance, the trolls which are briefly seen in LOTR, simple little devices like this which take us down memory lane that can be effortlessly entertaining without relying too much on the past.
    This is exactly why The Hobbit is so different, it was an attempt to rely on itself and not the massive cultural impact of the LOTR trilogy, something which Jackson succeeded greatly on. It's light-hearted, often humorous and exceptionally beautiful to watch. 48 fps took a little adjusting to, but where this HFR really shines are the action scenes in "Goblin City". A particular scene involving Bilbo and the dwarves find them trying to escape a duel between two stone giants, which is simply breathtaking to watch.
    Arguably the greatest part of the film is the brief return of Gollum, who engages in a battle of riddles with Bilbo, and without any spoilers, a predictable but smile-on-your-face discovery is made from our dear Hobbit.
    Excellent performances from Ian McKellan as Gandalf, Martin Freeman as a young bilbo, Richard Armitage as the miserable and brooding King Thorin as the the head of the dwarves, and the dwarves in general, its no secret the rigorous time in effort which goes into creating these creatures so bravo to all involved.
    With brief appearances from Cate Blanchett, Hugo Weaving and Christopher Lee reprising their roles of Galadriel, Elrond and Saruman the White respectively, its wonderful to see familiar faces so utilized so brilliantly, but expertly placed to set up their own stories which we see in the LOTR. I thought Elijah Wood's appearance as Frodo, while cool to see, was simply unnecessary and to simple a paycheck to earn on Wood's part.
    Light-hearted, humorous, and excellent action scenes make this a stand alone film to be reckoned with, while not as engrossing and spectacular as its predecessors, this prequel stands on its own two feet and has set up what could be a roller coaster of a trilogy on an epic scale.
  41. May 14, 2013
    A great movie, "official" critics are being too critical as if they never seen prequels in the past... I loved to get back into the LotR universe and highly enjoyed the quality and budget of the movie. Dwarfs storyline is quite interesting. Movie is quite predictable yet not that much to give it score of 4-5.

    I'm looking forward to next The Hobbit movie. Also badass ending song, this is
    probably the only movie in the world that forced me to sit through credits scene. Expand
  42. Dec 17, 2012
    Definitely lower your expectations if you are a huge fan of Jackson's Lord of the Rings trilogy before going to see the first installment of The Hobbit. If you loved the theater versions, but felt that the extended editions on dvd were a little tedious, then you will have that familiar feeling here. I was worried when they first decided to stretch it out into two movies, rather than one spectacular one, so I was even more worried when I heard they stretched it all the way out to a new trilogy. The Hobbit is such a great story. They really really are stretching it out, though, here. They added a lot that I didn't remember, and seemed to take a lot of liberties, though to be honest it's so long since I read the book I can't be sure what was or wasn't in it. I may be comparing it too much to the cartoon movie version I loved so much as a kid. But, all in all, I just felt that the story is stretched out a bit too long here. It's true that it probably wouldn't have all fit into one movie, but I think two would have been plenty, and then leave a lot of what they put in out for the blu-ray release. Instead, you get an uneven affair here, some of which reaches the familiar heights of greatness Peter Jackson established with the Lord of the Rings, but a lot of which falls short. Expand
  43. Dec 25, 2012
    I couldn't disagree with the critics more. I love the original trilogy but went into The Hobbit with low expectations because of the reviews. But I thought it was as good if not even better than any of the original films.
  44. Jan 24, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. I went into it thinking, "is this going to live to the anticipation"? I was sadly disappointed. I guess its still a good a movie. The cast was great, especially the three leads, and the music by Howard Shore was amazing. But the rest of the movie? Meh. The only really good bits were the misty mountains song by the dwarfs, the troll sequence, and the Gollum sequence. I thought the critics were being harsh comparing it to the lord of the rings as the books were very different, so the movies will be too. But now, I can see why. I had so many feelings of deja vu when I was watching this, that it felt like I was watching a recycled version of the fellowship of the ring, and it shouldn't be like that. And the script just dragged everrrryyythhhinnggg oooouuuuttttt soooooo lllloooonnngg. I was almost falling asleep during the white council scene. Which never happened in the book, it was just so they could have Galadriel and Saruman in the movie. Also, the last 10-15 minutes was incredibly melodramatic. Unnecessarily so. I guess it was an OK movie, to be honest I would watch it again, but only if I had nothing better to do. Expand
  45. Dec 28, 2012
    More of a new tech demo than an addition of epic saga, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey prioritizes more on the graphic until the point of unnecessity. Fortunately enough, the amazing talents and the nostalgic lore will make the journey worthwhile. The retelling of previous adventure of Bilbo Baggins has myriad of mystical elements, although with 48 fps, the visual is a departure from the earlier trilogy's cinematic feel. It's closer to a video game or documentary than a cinema flick, and it takes a while to get used to. The look definitely smoother, but somewhat too hyper realistic in tandem with 3D which makes it lost that ethereal look.
    The story goes that Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) is suddenly recruited to a party of thirteen Dwarves and one wizard to be their burglar in a quest to restore Erebor, the lost city of Dwarves that was stolen by a materialistic dragon. The invitation process is terribly awkward, and the fact that the first scenes in his house are excruciatingly long makes it even more so. Nevertheless there he is, trudging the forest and plain of Middle Earth in his spare time while the Dwarves are seriously moody about their fallen kingdom. Bilbo does a give foreign perceptive on the affair, but it feels like he's shoehorned into the party.

    Despite the initial slogging opening, Martin Freeman does a very good job on this role. He's not really valiant or witty, just enough to not be killed, and in some way he represents what Frodo did, a normal person in midst of heroes. It's a very relatable role, more pronounced by his flaws, I think audience will respond well to that. Ian McKallen reprises his role as Gandalf, it fits him like the beard and robe. Gandalf is a strong character, yet he accepts his shortcomings and his companions'.

    The Dwarves are stubbornly merry, they are more defined as a pack rather than individually. Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) stands out more than the rest, because he has a banished king appearance. His character is brave and bitter, making it the far cry of Bilbo. Andy Serkis as Gollum returns and pretty much steals the show with his unique expression and body language. He is one of the best mixtures of acting and technology to date. Christopher Lee, Cate Blanchett and Hugo Weaving return as their respective characters. Though only briefly, they maintain solid performances as if they never left the characters.
    The singular most annoying problem of this movie is the dragging pace. It's a too visible attempt to advertise the new 48fps. I seriously doubt that the audience needs to see more than half hour of Dwarves singing while washing dishes in the beginning, or the slightly troubled relative of Gandalf, Radagast The Brown, resuscitating a hedgehog many times over before he rides in his woody cart attached to bunnies. Its writing isn't at the same level as Tolkien's, sometimes it's bordering on bland and expectedly dramatic.

    For all the flaws, it's still an impressive visual. How the characters move or their heights' difference is seemingly normal, fast skirmished and action are a treat, although I'm not sure if this is the direction big budget title should go. Music is splendid, counting the nostalgic factor of the theme's soothing hum. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will most likely entertain you, although not in the same league as its predecessors.
  46. Oct 23, 2014
    An overlong charming spectacle reminding me of a past dream providing the ambiguous joy, cleverness and visual immersion only unique to middle earth. The first of three movies to The Hobbit runs a little over 20 minutes too long, however this splendid unexpected journey is definitively the enjoyable family movie of the year and with regards is more so on the level of a Narnia movie than on Peter Jackson's usual scale of storytelling quality. Expand
  47. Dec 17, 2012
    The Hobbit - An unexpected journey is a film of 2012 directed by Peter Jackson and based on the novel by J.R.R. Tolkien. The story speaks of the facts prior to "The Lord of the Rings" and tells of the adventures of Bilbo Baggins who, together with Gandalf and thirteen dwarves will help to regain the treasure of the latter, guarded by the fearsome dragon Smaug. The film is very faithful to the novel and adds some parts that are in the book just mentioned while in the film are expanded and will be key for the next chapters. Excellent choice of cast with actors formidable, fantastic photography and scenery typical of "Lord of the Rings", incredible special effects that digital is very little known and very beautiful music. Perhaps you might find the first part of the film a little bit slow while the second can achieve high moments of action. Expand
  48. Jan 9, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The Hobbit was by far my most anticipated film of 2012, and whilst it was fantastic it still disappointed me due to my views on the Lord of the Rings trilogy -- a trilogy I view as perfect films. An argument I have seen thrown around a lot is "It is based off a children's book -- lay off!" However films that are based from books can still delve into dark areas, The Hobbit did not. I will fully explain what the film did well first -- the visuals were stunning. There was a big fiasco and outrage about the film being shot in 48FPS but this did not bother me in the slightest and in fact I found the film to look crisper and clearer for the use of it. I should note I did not watch it in 3D though, so perhaps this would have affected the outcome. So the settings and the visuals were stunning, the soundtrack -- while most was re-used from LotR, was still beautiful and fitting. Ian McKellen shows he can still act Gandalf after a decade, his performance was solid and his age did not detriment the film in anyway. (The same cannot be said for Lee's Saruman, however -- he stumbled through his lines and his age was very noticeable.) I feel that Martin Freeman did a solid job as Bilbo, however he came across as a bit jittery and stuttery sometimes. The trolls scene irked me slightly as the CGI came lacking (especially when one of the trolls holds Bilbo in his hands, that effect did not transition onto the screen very well) and the scene was played for laughs. The same thing again in the Goblin's lair as the King came across as comedic design, and when the wooden walkways fell on the dwarves the "You've got to be joking" line had me rolling my eyes. Another scene I had a slight issue with was when Thorin dismounted the tree and walked to face the Pale Orc. This scene has dramatic music playing, a camera focused on Thorin's determined face framed by firelight and sparks -- and then he is almost instantly defeated by a swift blow to the face. I actually laughed out loud in the cinema at this scene -- surely they could have shown him swing his sword a bit first? Though I have listed all these complaints, I still did thoroughly enjoy the film. Rivendell was beautiful and Galadriel and Elrond and their respective actors had great performances and did not feel hamfisted into the film at all. The Gollum scene was by far the best part of the film and indeed I almost felt sorry for the poor wretch when Bilbo decided not to kill him. I concede that all the comedy added to this film was most probably to distinguish it as a kid's book, but alas then, in comparison to LotR it seemed a bit corny and afraid to get "dark" -- the only scene I would consider dark was Gollum's, and that scene was by far the best in the film. In short, no, this film is not as good as the LotR trilogy -- but it comes close and for that I am very grateful. Expand
  49. Jan 5, 2013
    Critics wants Lord of Darkness melodrama, with a pre-pubescent choir chanting to a Sauron montage. Hobbit isn't that, but it's still fun. It's a kids movie. And you'll probably like it.
  50. Nov 17, 2013
    Going into The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, I knew that it was a tale originally written for children, but the Lord of The Rings trilogy was so well done, that I fully expected the first Hobbit movie to be just as masterful. It was a pretty good film, however it didn't have the luster that Lord of The Rings had. The trilogy was magical, it's the reason people go to the movies, but the Hobbit, seemed to be playing off the fame of the Lord of The Rings and at times was directionless. For those who don't know the story, it starts to tell the tale of Bilbo Baggins and his original journey with Gandalf. In the Lord of The Rings, they go on this impossible journey in order to save Middle Earth, but here, the journey is about saving the dwarfs gold from a dragon. It really doesn't have the intensity or the urgency require to make a film like this work. Nothing had changed for over two hundred years, but all of a sudden, now is the time to stop the dragon, why? The film was not bad, but it doesn't come off as this great adventure and that could have something to do with the childish elements. This is a PG-13 film with fighting and beheadings, yet it's also a film with singing dwarfs, drunk gnomes, and a wizard with Alzheimer who is covered in bird I feel these things really hurt the film. Ian McKellen returns as Gandalf and finally seemed to be showing his age. McKellen is tired and slow in this film, Gandalf is not the same great warrior. Finally, this film is different because we know it's a prequel. Even if you didn't read the book, you know who lives and who dies, taking a major play away from the screenwriters. Overall the Hobbit is somewhat entertaining, but it's not The Lord of The Rings. It's directionless at times, lacks the urgency needed for an epic, and has a cast that really doesn't excite. I was hoping for a lot, but all I got was a little. The only thing I can do now is try and forget about it as I wait for the next film with anticipation. Expand
  51. Dec 31, 2012
    I went to see the movie with my 8 year old son and he seemed to adore all the action. If you're looking for something like LotR then you'll be in for quite the disappointment. Still, if you forget about the book, then the movie is enjoyable in a way, but seeing that this one book is going to be stretched out over 3 movies, you don't need to leave much to the imagination as to why.
    The kid
    loved it, and it wasn't too bad, but don't expect too much. Not much LotR like epic moments, but action and slapstick like silliness, except for the encounter with Gollum, which is the only part really worth watching. Expand
  52. Dec 31, 2012
    The hobbit is a great beggining to what looks like another great trilogy from jackson. It has everything in it that made the lord of the rings trilogy great story, action, drama, thrills and spills. the new and returning actors are all good and play there parts right and this should be watched by all lotr fans and everyone else and once again the critics have got it wrong. my only critisism is that not that much has changed since lotr. Expand
  53. Dec 26, 2012
    A must see for all the Middle-Earth aficionados. A great return to a great universe... The movie is a tribute to all the fans, who missed songs, as well as references to the Silmarillion and other Tolkien's works in the LOTR trilogy. The critics may be right when pointing out some tedious moments, but taken as a whole the movie stands out as a really enjoyable work, shot in a spectacular 3D technology... Expand
  54. Dec 23, 2012
    Please, do not look at the low score critics gave. They compare the hobbit with the lord of the rings. What they do forget is that the hobbit isn't lord of the rings. It's written before lotr and the atmosphere in the book is much lighter. Peter Jackson tries to implement this in his movie, and does it pretty well. I've also seen the high frame rate version, which is great. Never saw a movie technically so good. Expand
  55. Aug 24, 2014
    It felt surreal to sit and watch the titles beginning to roll, it really did. The original trilogy (especially "The Two Towers" and "The Return of the King") were the top of the hype for me.

    Perhaps that is the problem: I was waiting for another The Lord of the Rings movie. With the same makers, partially the same cast, you both hope and dread for similarities, and while there were
    many, some of them didn't work in the best interest of the movie.

    For one, some of the "monsters" didn't follow the old mold - mostly being too talkative. A small detail but bugging nonetheless. At the same theme, if you're not familiar with the world of the previous/later three movies, I urge you to watch them; no time was spared to introduce old characters or the world at general, which for a newcomer might be a bit much to take in stride.

    "The Hobbit" was never my favorite book although I've read it multiple times. I have gaps in my memory and I thought this might be a good thing when going to the theater, to not give me too many pre-set ideas on how the story should run.

    How to make one book into three super-long movies? Ask PJ. I dreaded this fact but at the same time hoped they would introduce events from between "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings". That remains to be seen.

    The story took its time picking up after the introduction to the history of Erebor. It's amazing how in three hours I didn't yet learn all the names of the Dwarves OR connect names with faces. It seemed most of them didn't have any visible talents that would set them apart.

    There were scenes that could have been cut short or left out altogether. Also, Saruman doing the Morgan Freeman and explaining a discussion to us that had just taken place... not necessary. All in all the film seemed to lack a certain sense of refinement, the scenes snapping by almost too hastily and cut in a way that made the story feel hectic and restless.

    We got a few great glimpses at things that will be featured in future films, like the Mirkwood Elves (hello, Thranduil; you remind me of the Observers in TV show "Fringe" with that cocked head and empty gaze of yours, but in the best possible sense), spiders, a shadow of Smaug...

    The soundtrack was another thing that bugged me. I've been intensely listening to the LotR trilogy's soundtracks in the past and even if it was amazing to hear those same themes once again, it began to feel like there was very little original score in "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" - and using old score in a new scene that didn't match the old one rubbed my mental state in all the wrong ways. (In other words: do NOT use an enemy song in a scene featuring a hero.)

    With all its small problems, I hope the first Hobbit movie will do the same as "The Fellowship of the Ring" did for me and only start the journey. The next two movies might do a lot better. I certainly hope so. The visual effects, the overall story, the air of the film... it's all there, the necessary ingredients; they just need to put it together the right way!
  56. Dec 30, 2012
    The Hobbit is, in many ways, the strategic all-age-appealing beast the Lord of the Rings never was. And whilst An Unexpected Journey is not likely to be the best film in the new trilogy, it is riddled (hah!) with many great moments, such as the Riddles in the Dark section, and the Goblin Town. A good if by-the-numbers first installments, which leaves a sweet taste of better things to come in The Desolation of Smaug. Expand
  57. Jan 20, 2013
    Very good movie, but I couldn't stop thinking about how most of it was different from the book, as well as how much of the scenes had been milked, long and overdrawn. Some of them, such as the troll scene for example, were disappointing seeing as how they had been turned into a full-blown battle and stretched out. The side plotline of Dol Guldur was interesting to see as well as the return of old characters that weren't in the book such as Radagast the Brown, but the introduction of Azog and his main antagonistic role throughout the film was a bit off-putting and only further derided from the book. Not to mention he's a complete CGI orc (really Jackson? Couldn't you have just found an actor and put him in costume?) The visuals are stunning however (though it's annoying how all of the orcs in one battle scene are all CGI), and Gollum looks better than ever and is voiced perfectly again by Andy Serkis. Overall, if you're a fan of Lord of the Rings this is a must-see! I'm just hoping the second film is even better than this one. Expand
  58. Jan 16, 2013
    A plain 2D version at the local multiplex, culminating my not-so-frenetic film-viewing activity of 2012. The first chapter of this contentiously extended THE HOBBIT trilogy from Peter Jackson revisits the familiar ground in New Zealand, with Bilbo recounts his tall-tale with Gandolf and thirteen dwarfs (strangely their purpose of their journey seems to be deliberately dodged, for viewers who have not read the novel, the journey itself is conspicuously Expand
  59. Feb 7, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The bad Some of the make up designs annoy me, Such as Bilbo's overly large feet, The bird poop on the brown wizard's face, and the large noses on the dwarfs that look painfully fake. Also, I didn't care for how limited Bilbo was in this film. He really only had 4 parts where he was actually the main guy The dwarf party, the Trolls part, the part with Gollum, and reuniting with the dwarfs. The rest of the film revolves around Gandolf and Thorin, Both are enjoyable characters but the Hobbit is suppose to be Bilbo's story. Azog is a lame villain. The last 20 mins are a little corny. The good Martin Freeman is an amazing Bilbo, He steals the show any times he takes center stage, Bilbo's little back and forth with Gandalf in the begining of the film made me convinced that he was made for this part. Richard Armitage is a great pick for Thorin as well. The special effects are good as well. Gollum definently steals the show imo, He made watching this movie worth it. Overall, It's a little rough in the first hour but as soon as they meet the trolls, The movie takes a turn for the better and actually becomes a solid watch. Expand
  60. Oct 8, 2014
    I remember being so diappointed after watching this film in the cinema. As a Tolkien fan who knows the books,, I can say that this movie (just like every other Hobbit movie) is a horrible piece of fan fiction.
  61. Dec 17, 2012
    Totally entertaining. I was worried given the critic reviews, but we really enjoyed it. First hour was sort of slow, but the next two were total action (other than the amusing gollum interlude.
  62. Dec 28, 2012
    The Hobbit: an Unexpected Journey is a truly awesome film, very true to the re-written, darker version of the hobbit, obviously written by J.R.R Tolkien himself. I thought this first part set the trilogy up incredibly well, the way that it started slowly pleased me, because if they they didn't make it start slowly, they'd have to make the other two films 20 minutes shorter. After the first hour had finished, the movie became frantic and incredibly exciting and thrilling to watch, with just incredible stuff going on, it's hard to describe how great the film is after the first hour or so has past. An Unexpected Journey has a distinct feel and charm to it, being similar to the Lord of the Rings, but different at the same time, it manages to catch your emotions in quite a unique way, and that's a good thing... So I rate this movie a... 9.9/10! Expand
  63. Feb 10, 2013
    Yeah a bit late in watching this one. Despite all the mixed reviews about this film, I thoroughly enjoyed it, especially the awesome soundtrack. Neil Finn's credits track which is based off the Dwarves' Misty Mountains song is a particular favourite of mine. It took me awhile to get used to the 48fps especially at the start of the film but after that it was fine. True the movie isn't as epic as Lord of the Rings but it's not meant to be as it's a precursor to the dark times ahead. Dwarven history and culture is fleshed out more in this movie along with Bilbo discovering the courage he thought he never had. Now we just have two more movies to go! Expand
  64. Oct 5, 2013
    Sure, this movie isn't perfect. It's not as good as Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings Trilogy. However, to say that this film is bad is like saying that The Godfather isn't a good movie, or Lawrence of Arabia, or Ben-Hur. This film is good, though not exceptional. The Dwarves break into a musical number at one point for no real reason whatsoever, probably to appeal to kids. I heard people laughing in the cinema when I watched this. I liked Lord of the Rings a LOT, and If I heard the audiences laughing AT ALL apart from the occasional moment between Merry and Pippin, or with Gimli, I would probably murder some of them, if not all of them.

    However, if you consider this film on it's own, you will find that it is a very, VERY good film, and, though it definitely doesn't live up to The Lord of the Rings, it's undeniably worth watching. It doesn't have as much depth, it doesn't have as much emotion, it doesn't have four hundred hours of special thanks at the end, and it doesn't have the cast of the previous films (bar Hugo Weaving, Christopher Lee, Ian McKellen, Cate Blanchett, Ian Holm and Elijah Wood), but it does have the ability to carry itself, and it's great.
  65. Jan 3, 2013
    Saw the movie tonight. After reading the first reviews here on MC and seeing a trailer I was worried if I would dig it, but now I can say I enjoyed almost every minute of it! The relatively slow pacing in the beginning made it even more enjoyable as a whole for me. If you like the material and take time, it's definitely worth it.
  66. Dec 28, 2012
    Lord of the Rings it's not - and that's the point. The wit and humour present in the book is held true in Jackson's film adaptation. While the deviations are significant from the source material, the addition of the content from appendices and other works in Middle Earth are seamlessly blended together with content from The Hobbit itself. The frame rate will take a few minutes to adjust to, but the result is nothing short of spectacular. If you take this film for what it is - you will find it a thoroughly enjoyable film and an excellent adaptation of the works of Tolkien. Expand
  67. Sep 1, 2014
    It is clear that Peter Jackson should not stretch the children's book into three Lord of the Rings-length feature films. Nevertheless, Jackson brings an insightful look into Middle Earth once again. An Unexpected Journey is by no means a repeat of the previous trilogy--it's fresh and exciting.
  68. Dec 29, 2012
    This movie was another amazing job by Peter Jackson to bring JRR Tolkiens work to the big screen. I thought this movie was amazing however it is cheesier than the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, because the book was written that way.
  69. Dec 19, 2012
    An extremely well done movie suited both for those familiar with the movies and those new to the series. Being a fan of the Lord of the Rings movies and book trilogy I thoroughly enjoyed this film. To describe the movie I think it is suffice to say that it doesn't feel like a 2 hr 45 min film. The production value is high and it definitely shows in all ways. Plenty of foreshadowing of what is come within the timeline of the movies so if you know the other three you'll love the references. Of the 4 total that have been made this is my second favorite (behind fellowship). Not quite as much mind-numbing action but the story is superb. You should definitely see this movie. One of the best of the year. Expand
  70. Dec 22, 2012
    I lose all respect for any and all critics who reviewed this movie saying it was slow at the beginning or not as god as it should have been. It stays more true to the book then lotr movies. Has anyone ever heard of character development(building). It is a integral part of a great movie and no one does it better then Peter Jackson and this movie is no exception. Fellowship of the ring started just as slow or slower as far as action and it was reviewed amazing. People and mainly critics have truly forgotten what elements make up a great movie. Its not just action action action which it seems people want to see these days. All action movies are good but they lack movie magic. The Hobbit is loaded with all the elements of a perfect movie and a movie like it only comes around every few years if were lucky.

    ----Captivating camera work
    ----Inventive shooting techniques
    ----Good quality film
    ----Expressive, believable Actors
    ----Appropriate Locations
    ----Well defined, detailed scenery
    ----Compelling, interesting plot
    ----Good character development
    ----Unexpected twists (its a movie from a book so this doesn't apply)
    +Visual Effects
    ----Timeless FX +Directing
    ----Unique, revolutionary directing
    ----Descriptive music, well composed
    ----Good quality sound FX
    ----Clear voice quality
    ----Dynamic lighting environments, that set an appropriate tone There is NOT a single point that The Hobbit did not deliver on.
    10/10 Easy
  71. Dec 18, 2012
    I must say, my expectations were not too high going into the movie because so much time had passed between The Lord Of The Rings movies and the Hobbit series. I was not disappointed at all. I enjoyed the movie a lot. It started off with quick intros to characters and moved along at a decent pace. For a popcorn movie, i say if you enjoyed the Ring movies you'll love this one too.
  72. Jan 30, 2013
    The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is a movie best described as "unexpected". A decade ago, nobody expected that Peter Jackson would come around and even make The Hobbit. A year ago, nobody expected that Peter Jackson would split it across three movies. A month or two ago, nobody expected that HFR would bring with it a huge dinner party of new problems for visual effects staff. And going into the theater, despite all of the warnings I'd received, I still didn't really expect what I got.

    It's not that I didn't LIKE The Hobbit -- I very much did, though many of my friends didn't -- the problem is that strictly speaking, it's not a good movie. It would, however, make a very good TV mini-series.

    A movie brings with it certain demands of pacing and condensation; you've got your audience for a set length of time with no intermissions or breaks, and you've got to hold their attention and entertain them for that entire time, which means that the longer your movie runs, the less added fluff you can afford to have in your movie (conversely, shorter movies can afford a lot more fluff, simply because the audience won't get tired of a 90 minute movie unless the whole thing is just unspeakably dull). With a mini-series, on the other hand, you can break the story up into 1-hour chunks, show one a week, move the story along at whatever pace you damn well like and as long as you don't turn into The Walking Dead Season Two you can flesh out the world as much as you want.

    Peter Jackson's heart is in the right place with this movie: he wants to show Middle-Earth in all its glory. He wants to show not only what you read in the book The Hobbit, but also everything important that was happening at the same time anywhere in the world, as well as give some of the otherwise-flat dwarves arcs. All of this would be completely forgiven on TV, and it would be hailed as one of the best shows on the airwaves for its dedication to bringing its setting to full, vibrant life. However, doing this in cinema just means that people are going to get cramps in their asses from sitting in the theater seats for three hours straight once a year three years in a row.

    The problem with the movie isn't with the dialogue, the acting, the visual effects (though I will be discussing the unexpected technical issues later; I just consider them petty quibbles rather than major problems), the cinematography, the sound, or any of that; the problem is pretty much just the decision to make the movie as incredibly long as it is. All the scenes themselves are individually very nice, and are at the very least atmospheric if not essential to the plot, but at a running time like this, anything unessential to the plot feels like it's wasting the viewers' time and padding the movie rather than actually giving you anything good, which is a real pity because this movie clearly put a great deal of love and work into everything in it. The good news is that the movie's pace ramps up constantly, until it's moving at full steam by the end, and it never slows down once it's gained speed.

    If I had to change one thing about the movie to make it better, there's one thing I would do: cut the entire chase scene that leads into Rivendell. Have Gandalf simply browbeat Thorin into going to Rivendell in a three or four minute conversation, cut to Rivendell, and have Gandalf meet Radagast there before the whole wizard council, moving Radagast's conversation with Gandalf to that meeting. It cuts out a huge padded chase scene that isn't nice to watch (it breaks the "only provide the illusion of depth; never pop out of the screen" rule that all 3D movies should follow), adds nothing to the story, dilutes Radagast's character, and introduces the Azog subplot much too early. In fact, Azog and his orcs shouldn't have come into the movie at all until Thorin gets a chance to finally see them at the end; this way, the audience feels his same surprise and the scene has that much more emotional impact. It also shortens the movie, which is one of the things that needs to be done with this movie. Moving Radagast to the Council also allows him to play off the other wizards, giving Sylvester McCoy much-deserved screentime to be entertaining while also giving him a chance to show that his character isn't just an insane stoner in the woods. It's shorter and has a better overall effect.

    On the technical side of the movie, HFR is a technology that shows promise, but still has a few kinks to work out. It makes the entire movie look too smoothly animated, like a Final Fantasy XIII cinematic, until you adjust to it, which takes about the first half hour. Once you acclimate, it looks gorgeous, but another problem arises: the greater detail means that costumes (and most noticeably, beards) look less realistic, which means that HFR won't develop further until costuming gets MUCH better. A lower framerate, something like 30, might be easier to work with.

    Hoping the sequel will be better.
  73. Dec 21, 2012
    Not a bad movie by any means...but it felt a wee bit bloated with filler and some out of place comedic bits. I saw the high frame version and while some of it looked awesome, others it looked like the characters were moving at 1.5 or 2 times speed and looked unnatural. Peter Jackson has two sequels to sort the tech out...
  74. Dec 6, 2013
    Perhaps not as breathtaking as the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, but "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" is still an exciting and adventurous journey that you will embark on. It's an elegantly shot film and the use of 3D is brilliant. It really makes us forget that we're watching a movie, as though we, ourselves, are part of this unexpected journey.
  75. Jan 6, 2013
    'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' beautifully showcases Tolkien's magical world of fantasy creatures, lands, and adventures. The effects might just be the best ones I have ever seen in a movie, the plot is bold and simple while remaining enjoyable and gripping, the characters are beautifully presented and overall I have almost no negative comments on this movie.
  76. Jan 5, 2013
    Amazing movie, don't listen to the snot-nosed, pretentious critics. I enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed the Fellowship of the Ring. There are some liberties taken with the source material but it is for the better as it makes a more entertaining movie.
  77. Feb 13, 2013
    Oh dear. This is the biggest disappointment in a movie I've ever had. I'm a HUGE Lord of the Rings fan (like a lot of people claim they are), the Lord of the Rings truly changed my childhood. Now more than 10 years later The Hobbit is released. This has been my most anticipated movie since heard it was going to be made in 2008. I couldn't believe I was going on another Middle Earth adventure! And after finally watching The Hobbit I was really let down. So what was wrong with The Hobbit: an Unexpected Journey? It's hard to place, but it wasn't intriguing at all. The story felt really flat, the characters didn't develop well, it was too childish and it was trying too hard to be something it's not. At least don't make the goblins damn CGI! The Goblin King was a joke, the viewer can't connect to the dwarfs all, there wasn't a sense of real danger. Even the script was pretty bad! The movie started off pretty good, you felt like you were back in Middle Earth after 10 years but then it turns into a silly Narnia adventure. 6/10 Expand
  78. Dec 29, 2012
    With The Lord of the Rings being my favorite film, doubts about Peter Jackson returning to Middle Earth with the Hobbit and concerns about him turning this relatively concise book into three movies; I had conflicting views upon entering this adventure. The final verdict is
  79. Oct 7, 2014
    The Hobbit isn't Peter Jackson's finest work, but it still captures the imagination with stunning scenery and suburb acting. The hobbit tends to drag on certain parts when it could have encapsulated a lot more. Azog was never in the hobbit among other characters and scenes, however, this doesn't necessarily violate Tolkien lore, it does make one wonder if this should be called something else rather than the Hobbit. Expand
  80. Dec 26, 2012
    Next to "The Avengers", this is the best movie of all 2012. The critics were way too harsh when reviewing this movie. I saw it, and I really did like it. It is based on the best fantasy book of all time. Well done Peter Jackson, well done.
  81. Jan 22, 2013
    I'm not a big fan of Tolkien and the original trilogy and I've read the book a very long time ago, so guess I'm being impartial here. I've definitely enjoyed the movie, it's well-filmed (no wonder in that), but it suffers from one thing, and that'd be the book being split into three separate movies. Not just that, but three two-and-half-hour-long movies. As a result, the story gains a bunch of unnecessary and often uninteresting details and the beginning feels awkwardly slow, the first half an hour of the film could easily be shortened thrice or so. But once the beginning's over, you'll get immersed in the world of Middle Earth. Another thing is I think that Bilbo is actually a better protagonist than Frodo - he's brave, modest and funny, another great performance by Martin Freeman. Anyway, it's a really good fantasy movie you definitely wouldn't wanna miss. Expand
  82. Dec 17, 2012
    Critics, proving once again that they are out of touch with the real world.

    I'm sad to say I'm not surprised by the "professional" reviews of this movie. I expected this when I first heard The Hobbit was being made as it has a different pace and feel than LOTR. I've seen this movie twice and I can say without a doubt that if you're a fan of the LOTR trilogy then you will enjoy this
    greatly. Whilst it may not be as well paced as The Fellowship of The Ring, it's certainly just as memorable. The set pieces, the vistas, the acting, the script, this movie has it all in top form. I was slightly worried by the time length but after the first hour the movie just seemed to be over way too fast. The movie was incredible, the sense of wonder I have only ever experienced from the LOTR trilogy came back. My only real complaint about this movie would be the amount of time spent in Bilbo's home near the beginning and Radagast, he was far too eccentric I thought. Overall though this movie is brilliant, a must buy for fantasy fans. Expand
  83. Jan 3, 2013
    All I came here to write, is that to ignore the critic reviews on the left of the page, go see it yourself and judge from there. Sadly the movie has been slandered by the critics for god only knows. In my opinion, the movie falls more accurate to that of the user score.
  84. Dec 17, 2012
    When I see this film, I see exactly what I imagine Middle Earth would look like. "An Unexpected Journey" is an amazing film that, for the most part, remains true to the story. Not only that, but it incorporates elements of the story that aren't present in the Red Book -- where do you think Gandalf disappears to all the time? -- the appendices hold the answers! Do not expect the Hobbit to be the same as the Lord of the Rings; if you do, you will be disappointed. The Hobbit is an all together different type of Fantastic tale that stands alone - not as a prequel, but as a story in its own right. The critics are way off on this one. If you love Adventure, Humorous Warrior Dwarves, Wizards, and the Necromancer, then this film will pull you in again and again! Expand
  85. Dec 30, 2012
    Well, I have to start off and say, I found this book in my dad's books one day when I was 10. I had no idea what it was, and it was in a crappy book cover, but the pictures of MiddleEarth in the book, caught my attention. I then found the Fellowship of the Ring, I read that first and went back and read the hobbit. This movie brought back many of those memories from 1979-1980. I truly love what Peter Jackson did, I don't give a F, if they followed the book storyline, or added stuff or borrowed from unfinished tales or Silmarillion, this move IS GREAT! (tmiFyi - Bilbo was in Ali G). I have seen it three times, (after the second, I am gonna pass on 3D - what a gimmick). Love the First HOBBIT movie, please dont drag an Aragorn Love story into this series, please no one cares about Eowyns love of Aragorn, don't ruin this series with that RUBBISH! hehehe. I was so happy when they dropped the "crocket" and "golf", from the books - these parts are delightful. I even laughed at the one liner of the goblin king, it was a good addition to how the goblins were portrayed. I love what they did, although the three hours may have felt long, there should be an intermission for the movie - I N T E R M I S S I O N for any move over 2.5 hours PLEASE MANDATORY THIS! =) Expand
  86. Apr 14, 2013
    First off, THIS IS NOT THE LORD OF THE RINGS!!!!!!!!! You can't compare it to it! Too many times I heard my friends or others walking out of the theater say that it wasn't was good as The Lord of the Rings. That is because it is its own trilogy. Another complaint I heard was that the dwarves looked lame. I watched a documentary of Pete Jackson in pre-production saying that creating the look of the dwarves was the most difficult thing he would have to do. He had to create 13 different looking dwarves so that when one of them was mentioned, you could put a name to a face, not just think, 'I think that's the guy with the beard, but they all have beards...' Appreciate what he did. He was also creating this trilogy knowing that no matter what it was going to be living in the shadow of the LotR trilogy. I was thoroughly entertained and enjoyed it from start to finish. I keep watching it hoping that every time I do, the story will go further. I can't wait for "The Desolation of Smaug" and "There and Back Again". My only big criticism. is the use of CGI instead of actors in makeup and prosthetics. The orcs and goblins in LotR that were actors in costume are far better than the Pale Orc in the Hobbit. But again, that is contradictory to what I said earlier about comparing the two. I just wish they used less CGI and more costumes. But I really like this film. Go watch it! Expand
  87. Dec 29, 2012
    Go into this movie making sure you do NOT expect it to be the Lord of the Rings. Unfortunately, the movie's biggest flaw is inviting that comparison (pay close attention and you can take screenshots that will nearly match LOTR exactly). The movie is great for what it is though. Exciting, funny, and adventurous. This is a movie about an adventure, not an epic quest of good versus evil. It also seems to be more Tolkein-ish, more like a fantasy. By that, I mean you see more creatures and they are not just "war things": you see a good amount of goblins and trolls and learn about how the creatures are outside of just using a weapon. There are also foreshadowing minor bits that hint at the events of LOTR 60 years in the future. All in all, this movie was highly enjoyable--especially with such a magnificent cast! Expand
  88. Jan 12, 2013
    I really don't know why this movie gets such bad reviews. A 58? There's the obvious and overused complaint "it's too long" but for anyone who has a half decent attention span it wasn't that bad. It was about the same length of Django Unchained or The Avengers but I never heard anyone complaining about those. The special effects were great, the acting was great, and the story, while still great, was something to be expected because the book had been out for a while. Some people were complaining about the abrupt ending but anyone who knew anything about the movie probably found out that they were making it into multiple movies. And don't complain about "It's the shortest book! Why is IT in three movies?" because Harry Potter did it and no one complained about that. My only complaints about this movie were that it was a bit slow to start (not too long, just slow, it's entirely different) and I wish they showed a bit more of Martin Freeman. They still showed a lot of Martin Freeman as he was still the main character but I really liked him so the scenes that he wasn't in I felt weren't as good. Expand
  89. Dec 29, 2012
    Putting aside the grumblings about making a trilogy from a short enough book, I still found this fourth trip to Jacksons version of middle earth to be really enjoyable. Its beautiful to look at and has a lighter touch than the Rings trilogy. Even the long running time (surely a bit of editing could have been used to tighten it to 2 hours?) doesnt detract too much. I went in with some reservations but left looking forward to part 2. Cant say more than that really. Certainly no Phantom Menace. Expand
  90. Jan 21, 2013
    Not horrible, but rather disappointing. Jackson captures the visual appeal of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy but the story feels much too bloated. The ending was satisfying, though.
  91. Jan 28, 2013
    All the major critics of this film relate this film to Lord of the Rings and say how it was not near as epic as Jackson's Lord of the Rings trilogy. Let me first say that no it isn't but The Hobbit is no epic and so you shouldn't expect it to be. The Hobbit is a short, goofy heart-warming prequel to an epic. Sure, it has it's epic moments but out rightly comparing this movie to Lord of the Rings is unfair. So, if that's not my complaint why did I give this movie a 6? The problem is that the Hobbit is a short book and it's ending up being stretched into 3 LONG movies. Since the Hobbit book is even shorter than a single Lord of the Rings book this is a problem and this lead to Jackson looking to the appendices to put more content into the film. This leads to a drawn out film that doesn't seem to want to end. There are definitely scenes that should have been saved for the extended addition and other parts that should have plainly been cut. Anther problem is that the film seems to want to spend more times making ties to Lord of the Rings than developing it's own characters (all of which did great jobs in there respective roles.) This leads to cameos by characters not previously in the Hobbit which while cool is something that makes the movie even more long. If Jackson trims the fat of the movie down just a bit more in the next two films the could be great but he has to learn that he must do that first. If you're a big LOTR fan you will love this movie but if you're indifferent to the series you'll find it to be mediocre. Yeah I enjoyed it and yeah I'm extremely excited for the next two movies. I just hope it's an improvement to this film. Expand
  92. Dec 17, 2012
    There are moments that make you remember the first three films, and that unfortunately makes you realize how much better those are than this. Perhaps in the next two (God help us) we will see more development but this is a film that is at least 30 minutes too long and too family friendly for its own good.
  93. Dec 13, 2013
    The Film was good, not amazingly spectacularly great, the films rather boring in parts yet overall is fun and entertaining, i love the new characters for example the dwafs and seeing the adventure of Bilbo giving us the viewer a better understanding of how he come in position of the ring

    8/10, probably more like a 7 but im too lazy, then again i did write a review
  94. Dec 31, 2012
    The two things that make "An Unexpected Journey" not that good as we all have hoped are its length and the inappropriate funny stuff Jackson mixes into it. The dwarfs and their burping and quaffing destroy the mystic feeling of Middle-earth and turn the movie into a unfunny comedy. Luckily, only the first third of the film is ruled by the dwarfs, the rest is focused on the great battles and the wonderful views of Tolkien's world. But Peter Jackson's habit to turn every little story, as tiny as it may be, into a three-hour-picture is really pesky. Less dwarfs, less battles, less pseudo-humorous talk and we would've got a much better film. But after all, the first part of The Hobbit is dominated by the Oscar-deserving visuals and acoustics, a mostly felicitous cast and fantasy stuff, that is simply amazing to see. Just because of the 3D, the cinema ticket is worth its price. Eventually, you have to keep in mind that this is only the initiation to a hopefully marvelous journey. Expand
  95. Dec 29, 2012
    I myself really like this movie, yes it was not as good as LOTR but I do not compare 2 totally different movies. The Hobbit is more light than LOTR because The Hobbit is more like a fairy tale and not as dark as LOTR was. I think that this movie and the 2 more to come will be the 'trilogy' for the 21st century generation and kids now will look up to this movie as people from the 20th century looked up to LOTR. So myself being born in 1995 will always like LOTR more than The Hobbit but that's because LOTR is the movie I grew up on and that is how kids now will feel about The Hobbit. I think that this movie did live up to the hype. Plus this is only the first part of 3 and this movie was only an introduction into the next two. So for the people that are still on the fence about watching this movie just give it a chance you will not regret it. Expand
  96. Dec 26, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. An Unexpected Journey is a welcome return to Middle-Earth and the most exciting film of the year. I've seen the Avengers and TDKR and while I would say that Avengers is a better film (9/10), The Hobbit had me awe inspired on multiple occasions. It's not as good as LOTR, that's a fact. Those are three 9+/10 films but The Hobbit is still a great film nonetheless and one which makes me eagerly await seeing it again and anticipate it's sequels. The critics' maniacally biased reviews have clearly put a lot of people off and while the film is not without it's flaws, they made mostly nonsensical points. The majority of the negative reviews focused on the frame rate rather than the actual film. Another dumb, ironic criticism is that the critics said they were fans of Tolkien but didn't understand why The Hobbit was light in some places. It's an adaptation of a light book and including information that Tolkien belatedly added to the era in the appendices, the film is one of the most faithful works I've ever seen. Of course Jackson took some liberties but most of them were for the better. The Rivendell scene, whilst I thought that the script was a little lacking, was essential to start recognising and confronting the problem of the Necromancer. Having 13 dwarves and making them all fully fledged characters in one film was an impossible task and as a result many such as Bombur do not even say a word, yet Thorin, Balin, Bofur, Dwalin, Ori, Fili and Kili had a much greater focus. I'm sure that the others shall have their time to shine in the following films. Martin Freeman as Bilbo captured the essence of the character very well and Ian McKellen as Gandalf was as good as ever and brought me back to Fellowship-Gandalf, which was the character's best. After all, Grey has much more personality than White. The prologue showcasing Erebor and Smaug's attack had me immediately filled with a sense of wonder as if I had never left Middle Earth. The brief flashback of the battle outside Moria was another excellent demonstration of PJ's fluency with action scenes and you could literally focus on any one-on-one between the dwarves and orcs and be entertained. Azog was a fantastic addition and made you feel a real sense of danger for the company as well as a feeling of being hunted, adding more gravity and resonance to the group's mission. The stand out scene of the film was Gollum's return to the screen, which was arguably the best we've ever had the character. Whether humorous or dangerous he was just captivating, creating the most memorable scene of the year. The pacing was excellent and the Shire scene, which caused some controversy concerning its length, flew by, ending just at the right time. I was only aware of the length when the film stopped still after they had left the caves and caught their breaths for about 15-20 seconds. What followed was the most unexpected part of the movie; having read the book, I expected the eagles to rescue them pretty quickly, but I was just waiting and waiting, all the while the tension was reaching a climax. Thorin, choosing to die in battle and facing his foe rather than falling off a cliff, charging down to confront Azog was such a powerful moment and made me realise how invested I'd become over the course of the film. By the end, with the Lonely Mountain in sight, I felt the same way that I had at the end of Fellowship; that I had a long way to go before the finish, but so much had happened that I was completely satisfied. I give An Unexpected Journey an 8.5/10. Expand
  97. Dec 23, 2012
    Does very well to follow the 3rd edition of the Hobbit which includes Gollum's revised character and the pieces added from the Silmarillion. I thoroughly enjoyed the first half of the film, which is light and much more in style with the feeling of the book. While the second act was quite long, I was never bored and appreciated the addition of Galadriel to give some balance to the cast. Well done, and I look forward to the next one! Expand
  98. Dec 21, 2012
    Muy entretenida. Supera a la Trilogía original porque no tiene largas escenas pesadas. Muy divertidos los enanos y los trolls. Muchas escenas de acción. Muy buenos efectos especiales. Acertados personajes conocidos rejuvenecidos.
  99. Dec 25, 2012
    EPIC adventure. Outstanding visuals. Great actors. Nice 3D effects. Solid length. An AAA-class movie. No more, no less. I enjoyed every minute of the movie. Waiting for the next part!!!

Mixed or average reviews - based on 40 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 40
  2. Negative: 2 out of 40
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Dec 14, 2012
    My first thought in watching The Hobbit was: Do we really need this movie? It was my last thought, too.
  2. Reviewed by: Liam Lacey
    Dec 14, 2012
    In this fitfully engaging, but often patience-straining preamble to Hobbit adventures to come, there is one transporting 10 minutes of screen time. It happens when Bilbo meets the freakish, ring-obsessed creature Gollum.
  3. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Dec 13, 2012
    It's a bloated, shockingly tedious trudge that manages to look both overproduced and unforgivably cheesy.