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8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 2540 Ratings

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  1. Sep 1, 2014
    6
    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.
  2. Dec 17, 2012
    6
    Peter Jackson presents the first installment in this popular book with a full tilt vision. After the setup and a lengthy introduction of the characters; Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf set out to help 12 dwarves reclaim their kingdom from a sleeping dragon. Two hours of this three-hour film feels like a massive, frantic video game: lots of action and mayhem on a grand scale. The fantasy world isPeter Jackson presents the first installment in this popular book with a full tilt vision. After the setup and a lengthy introduction of the characters; Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf set out to help 12 dwarves reclaim their kingdom from a sleeping dragon. Two hours of this three-hour film feels like a massive, frantic video game: lots of action and mayhem on a grand scale. The fantasy world is visually dazzling and the pacing seldom lags. Fans will surely be thrilled, but there's something hollow and weirdly modern about the spirit that makes it more a spectacle than an expressive adventure. BTW, this is the first movie in HRF (High Frame Rate), shot in 48fps and showing in selected local theatres. Basically, it looks like really clean HD video. I review THE HOBBIT and the new HFR format. Expand
  3. Jun 28, 2013
    8
    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 lotThe 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
  4. Dec 18, 2012
    6
    The Hobbit is clearly a step down from The Lord of the Rings. Jackson didn't seem to remember how to direct. Editing, pace, acting and even action sequences were off. The movie simply didn't gel. The visuals were stunning, music remember full and some scenes brought back good memories. The Hobbit isn't a bad movie by any means but the length is simply ridiculous.
  5. Dec 23, 2012
    8
    Although the film's first act may seem a bit sluggish to some, in my opinion "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" powers through it with plenty of humor, surprisingly well-developed characters, and an always-stellar amount of visual magnificence.
  6. Jan 27, 2015
    4
    Even the extended version leaves me wanting more. This movie could have been so much better. It relied far too heavy on CGI and special effects and not enough on establishing the story and the characters.
  7. Nov 17, 2013
    7
    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 theGoing 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
  8. Apr 29, 2013
    7
    Not as good as any of The Lord of the Rings movies but still a lot of fun. If you go in comparing this film to The Lord of the Rings films it's about a 6 but as a stand alone it deserves an 8.
  9. Nov 30, 2013
    6
    The Hobbit is extremely disappointing coming from a director who has accomplished so much, and knows the material so well. It is still has great moments, and for the most part is easy going adventure to watch, but come on.
  10. Apr 17, 2013
    8
    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.
  11. Dec 14, 2012
    7
    I had very modest expectations coming into this film. I was disappointed by the first two films in the LOTR triology and found them non-memorable and flat. An unexpected Journey is charming from the start, and even though the first half is a little bloated (my primary criticism of the film), the second half is terribly exciting, and I love the characterization of Bilbo Baggins and theI had very modest expectations coming into this film. I was disappointed by the first two films in the LOTR triology and found them non-memorable and flat. An unexpected Journey is charming from the start, and even though the first half is a little bloated (my primary criticism of the film), the second half is terribly exciting, and I love the characterization of Bilbo Baggins and the way he's ingratiated into the crew of dwarves. I find the characters in the first installment of The Hobbit to be much more relatable and sympathetic than any of them in the LOTR series. I'll take young Bilbo over young Frodo any day as a protagonist. I will say that Gollum injects a special energy into the film that crests all the way to its conclusion. So yes, the film won me over in ways I truly did not expect. Expand
  12. Apr 21, 2013
    10
    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.
  13. Jan 16, 2013
    6
    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 viewersA 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
  14. Aug 24, 2014
    8
    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
    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!
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  15. Apr 2, 2013
    8
    Many things fall flat in this film. The story is thin, the film is too long, but Martin Freeman brings Bilbo to life more than the novel is itself. Sure other performamces from that of McKellan are grand but none compare to his. The visual effects are incredible except for the orks, the sets, costumes, and make-up are astounding. The Hobbit takes a different tone from the of the RingsMany things fall flat in this film. The story is thin, the film is too long, but Martin Freeman brings Bilbo to life more than the novel is itself. Sure other performamces from that of McKellan are grand but none compare to his. The visual effects are incredible except for the orks, the sets, costumes, and make-up are astounding. The Hobbit takes a different tone from the of the Rings trilogy which is smart considering the novel is a children's book. It works out by providing humor, emotional depth, and intelligence with ease. Many things should be fixed for the sequels to come to keep my interest, but this is a somewhat solid start to a new trilogy. I give this film 78%. Expand
  16. Mar 26, 2013
    8
    A lot of fans, including myself, were taken by surprise when reviews of An Unexpected Journey were mixed to positive at best. People questioned Jackson's decision to return to Middle Earth, and even more questioned the decision to expand the film into 3 films. Now that I've seen the film multiple times, I am confident that Peter Jackson is the only person I trust that can bring MiddleA lot of fans, including myself, were taken by surprise when reviews of An Unexpected Journey were mixed to positive at best. People questioned Jackson's decision to return to Middle Earth, and even more questioned the decision to expand the film into 3 films. Now that I've seen the film multiple times, I am confident that Peter Jackson is the only person I trust that can bring Middle Earth to life on the screen. An Unexpected Journey is a highly entertaining and satisfying tale but not without a few flaws. Two of the big problems I had with the film were the slow beginning and heavy use of CGI. This film takes its time in the early moments, but the film as a whole doesn't drag. The Hobbit relies heavily on computer generated orcs/creatures unlike LotR; I personally found the CGI to be poor at times, it really takes you out of the film during certain scenes.

    Flaws aside, this is an entertaining adventure and fully satisfying return to Middle Earth. Jackson's vision remains the same, Ian McKellen, Cate Blanchett, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, and Andy Serkis return, New Zealand's beauty shines, and Howard Shore's (excellent) musical score ties everything together by reminding us that we have in fact returned to ME. On top of that, Martin Freeman joins as Bilbo and we have a dozen dwarves to meet; not all of the dwarves are fully realized characters, but they're very entertaining and we have two more films to get to know them better. Freeman is the heart and soul of this film, I really could not have imagined a better fit for Bilbo.

    2 films would have sufficed to tell this story, imo. As a fan of Tolkien, I enjoyed all the additions to the film, it really makes it obvious where the trilogy is going, but this first film suffers a bit because it lacks its own real narrative, but I am beyond excited for where the next films are going to go.

    In short, The Hobbit 1 is not as good as LotR. It feels bloated at times in the beginning due to a lot of backstory/additions to the story and a strange dependence on cg effects, but it is a wonderful return to Middle Earth and will satisfy fans of the original trilogy.
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  17. Dec 17, 2012
    5
    The opening sequence of this prequel to The Lord of the Rings is so good that one is immediately optimistic about what is to come. Therefore, it is rather disappointing to report that following this excellent opening we are treated to a film whose first half is so dull and dreary that boredom settles in very quickly. It is definitely not the equal of any of TLOTR films. A perfunctoryThe opening sequence of this prequel to The Lord of the Rings is so good that one is immediately optimistic about what is to come. Therefore, it is rather disappointing to report that following this excellent opening we are treated to a film whose first half is so dull and dreary that boredom settles in very quickly. It is definitely not the equal of any of TLOTR films. A perfunctory battle scene and the introduction of the charmless dwarfs do little to up the ante. In fact the real star of the first half of this film is actually the New Zealand scenery and we are treated to quite a lot of it as our intrepid travellers climb up mountain, after mountain, after (yawn yawn) mountain!

    Still, it's not all bad news as the second half improves considerably. This turn of events happens at the time we are introduced to the stone giants which is filmed using swooping camera movements that are very effective. It's onwards and upwards from here on. The special effects are variable (again better in the second half). However, the troll sequence is really awful with some extremely lame attempts at humour (the writing does leave a lot to be desired), but with the arrival of the wonderful Gollum we get to enjoy the film's highlight. The Art-Direction also still affords some pleasures, especially in the opening sequence and in the goblin s' town.

    Martin Freeman works hard to deliver a fair enough performance as Bilbo Baggins, but one misses Viggo Mortensen, Sean Astin and Elijah Wood here. In a role similar to the one that Mortensen played in the earlier films, Richard Armitage doesn't really cut it.

    The score occasionally hits familiar notes reminding us of how beautiful that main theme is, but 'The Lonely Mountain' song hasn't the haunting effect of either 'May it be' or 'Into the West'. Overall the film is too long and should never have been planned as a trilogy. The book just isn't dense enough to warrant such indulgence. This error in judgement is the fatal flaw of ' The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.
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  18. Jan 3, 2013
    9
    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
    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.
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  19. Jan 2, 2013
    7
    Overall I liked the Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. The scenes from the book are done really well better than in Hunger Games or the later Harry Potter films. There is some great acting, camera work, music, and sets. The scenes are really given time to flesh out. The added scenes cause the movie to drag. If some of the scenes were cut out and/or this was one or two movies I would be givingOverall I liked the Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. The scenes from the book are done really well better than in Hunger Games or the later Harry Potter films. There is some great acting, camera work, music, and sets. The scenes are really given time to flesh out. The added scenes cause the movie to drag. If some of the scenes were cut out and/or this was one or two movies I would be giving this a higher score. Unfortunately Peter Jackson tries a little to hard to incorporate Middle Earth lore that while cool often is not that interesting and slows the movie down. Its like he was trying to create his own beginning, middle, and end. Despite these flaws though I really enjoyed this movie its flaws are not because the director did not try hard to make a good story but tried too hard, which I appreciate. Maybe if I see it again knowing where its going I Expand
  20. Dec 21, 2012
    9
    If you liked The Lord of the Rings movies than you'll like this film. The visuals are absolutely incredible and it has that familiar LOTR feel that we all know and love. I couldn't quite give it a 10/10 for a few reasons. For one, there are so many characters that most of them have absolutely zero development whatsoever. Frodo gets more screen time than some of the dwarves and that'sIf you liked The Lord of the Rings movies than you'll like this film. The visuals are absolutely incredible and it has that familiar LOTR feel that we all know and love. I couldn't quite give it a 10/10 for a few reasons. For one, there are so many characters that most of them have absolutely zero development whatsoever. Frodo gets more screen time than some of the dwarves and that's really unfortunate. Bilbo, Gandalf, and Thorin are the focus of the film, as they should be, but the rest of the dwarves are essentially filler in the movie. I don't know how Peter Jackson could've done this differently without making the movie even longer (and it's already about 3 hours) so it's really just the nature of the content that has trouble transitioning to film. Secondly, the feel, while similar to LOTR, doesn't seem as epic. When watching Lord of the Rings, even after already having watched it before, there's a sense of awe that this film doesn't quite capture to the same degree. Regardless, the movie is outstanding and I have a feeling that if watching all three films back-to-back-to-back (when they're released that is), it will come off much better. I can't wait for the second installment. Expand
  21. Jan 28, 2013
    8
    I find that allot of the criticism that this movie receives is very unjust. The Lord of the Rings trilogy set an extremely high standard that very few fantasy films could ever hope to achieve. The High Frame Rate might have been a little bit of a blunder, but the film itself is exactly what it set out to be: The story that happened before LOTR. It's not meant to be as epic or grand. TheI find that allot of the criticism that this movie receives is very unjust. The Lord of the Rings trilogy set an extremely high standard that very few fantasy films could ever hope to achieve. The High Frame Rate might have been a little bit of a blunder, but the film itself is exactly what it set out to be: The story that happened before LOTR. It's not meant to be as epic or grand. The hobbit is a fantasy adventure story and it succeeds in that completely. If I had to criticize, I would say that it might not have been a bad idea to cut a few of the Dwarves from the cast. Most of them feel like they're there just to form a crowd. Overall: I thoroughly enjoyed it and loved every minute of it. It didn't wow me the same way Fellowship of the ring did, but it kept me enthrall just the same. I can't wait to see the next movie. Expand
  22. Dec 31, 2012
    6
    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 battlesThe 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
  23. Jan 3, 2013
    5
    I saw "The Hobbit" in Regal's RPX format in 3D with the higher frame rate. The movie looks great in the new high frame rate and the 3D is excellent, but I did think the movie dragged at times, and was too similar to the Lord of the Rings movies. There were way too many scenes of people almost falling off of cliffs, and people taking terrible falls only to survive without a scratch. TheI saw "The Hobbit" in Regal's RPX format in 3D with the higher frame rate. The movie looks great in the new high frame rate and the 3D is excellent, but I did think the movie dragged at times, and was too similar to the Lord of the Rings movies. There were way too many scenes of people almost falling off of cliffs, and people taking terrible falls only to survive without a scratch. The character of "Thorin", the leader of the dwarfs, was particularly annoying. Grouchy, skeptical, humorless, and wrong at almost every turn. Also, the entire scene with Gollum was annoying because I can't understand half the things he says. The next installment should be better as they will be battling a dragon instead of the usual evil Orcs and Goblins that we have already seen in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. Expand
  24. Mar 24, 2013
    9
    The first Hobbit movie in the franchise is not only exciting, it takes you on a thrill ride with not only some new creatures, but some old memorable character such as Gollum. At times, the story is distracted some cheesy humor, mostly caused by the dwarfs. But other than that it's a great start to the Hobbit trilogy.
  25. Dec 6, 2013
    8
    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.
  26. Mar 11, 2015
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. First off, I do like the movie. Martin Freeman is excellent as Bilbo. He truly embodies the character. The dwarves are very well cast too. Unfortunately, the script makes arbitrary changes to several key scenes. I was very upset that they almost completely changed the scene with the trolls. Tolkien did it best in the book and why Mr. Jackson and troop of writers changed the scene only seems like they were arrogant enough to believe that they could do better. They didn't. The scene in the movie is crude and not funny at all. it also tries to turn the focus on Bilbo when it was originally meant to show Gandalf as a tricky and wise wizard.

    Otherwise, the visuals, the action scenes, and musical score are excellent. It's not a bad movie, just don't expect book, or you will be sorely disappointed.
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  27. Dec 22, 2012
    4
    Two hours and fifty minutes into the film not knowing what to do! That film more boring!
  28. May 31, 2013
    8
    How do you portray magic in a medium that is all magic? Get a cast made up of Woody Harrelson, Mark Ruffalo, Jesse Eisenberg, Dave Franco, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Isla Fisher, Melanie Laurent, Jose Garcia and Commons and add a lot of razzle-dazzle. “Now You See Me” delivers on both counts. The ending may not quite make sense and may have to be listened to a second time or might makeHow do you portray magic in a medium that is all magic? Get a cast made up of Woody Harrelson, Mark Ruffalo, Jesse Eisenberg, Dave Franco, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Isla Fisher, Melanie Laurent, Jose Garcia and Commons and add a lot of razzle-dazzle. “Now You See Me” delivers on both counts. The ending may not quite make sense and may have to be listened to a second time or might make you think of seeing the movie over again to follow if the ending is as logical as the screenwriter says it is.

    There are spectacular magic tricks, most explained, foot chases, a car chase and a couple of heists that are explained to such an extent that it adds to the puzzlement. This is not a movie to see for character development because a love story between 2 of the stars only slows everything down while another couple is handled in a sort of throwaway manner and makes more sense.

    Mark Ruffalo as an FBI agent needs a shave while his partner on loan from Interpol, Melanie Laurent, adds a foreign interest leading to a bridge in Paris with a fence filled with locks. (Always learning things from movies--didn’t know this was a widespread craze--had to google it for more information!) The team of four with Woody Harrelson as a mentalist, Jesse Eisenberg as an illusionist, Isla Fisher as an escape artist and Dave Franco as a pickpocket, who was really impressive, make their roles of magicians realistic while Michael Caine as a rich man who sponsors their act, and for some unexplained reason disappears from the movie while Morgan Freeman is a man who exposes magicians and their tricks, are always entertaining to watch.

    The screenplay by Ed Solomon, Boaz Yakin and Edward Ricourt, along with direction by Louis Leterrier, photography by Larry Fong and Mitchell Amundsen plus the eye catching production design by Peter Wenham and visual effects supervisor Nicholas Brooks make “Now You See Me” a pleasant diversion. The music by Brian Tyler is loud, as most musical soundtracks are in action films, and Ruffalo needing that shave, along with the explanation at the end having to be heard again, are minor complaints regarding a film about magic that you can just sit back and enjoy the actors, scenery and razzamatazz!
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  29. Nov 9, 2014
    8
    The first installment of the Hobbit franchise spends a lot of time laying its foundations then uses it to create an immersive experience for its audience.
  30. Nov 2, 2013
    7
    It starts out slow with some story telling, but don`t give up on it cause it picks up, and takes you into the adventure you probably expected.The thing is when I ask myself if I was really amazed, the answer is no for the most part, but it was a good watch.
Metascore
58

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
    58
    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
    63
    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
    38
    It's a bloated, shockingly tedious trudge that manages to look both overproduced and unforgivably cheesy.