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Universal acclaim- based on 2326 Ratings

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  1. Dec 14, 2012
    A lot of critics are complaining about the length of this movie, but in my opinion this was not one of the negatives. I was amazed and entertained with every second of the movie, and was dreading seeing the credits. A feeling that I'm sure many Tolkien fans will share. Sure the beginning started off a little slow, but after passing the 45 minute threshold the movie almost became a nonstop adventure that fans have come to expect from the LOTR's. The acting was great, the sets and scenery breathtaking, a fantastic soundtrack, and great action. All centered around a amazing story, dotted with additions from other Tolkien books, that for the most part follows the book. The only problems I had with the movie is that I didn't care as much about the dwarves as I did members of the LOTR's fellowship. They just were all to similar and number to many to gain any sort of real emotional attachment, excluding Thorin. The second problem being the use of CGI for orks instead of actors in customs. They just didn't seem as real, and left me wondering why Jackson made the switch. Outside of these minor complaints though, the Hobbit was an amazing film, and my personal favorite of 2012. Expand
  2. Dec 14, 2012
    Way better movie than the Fellowship of the Rings. The only complaint I have is it is a prequel so you have a rough idea what happens. Moved reasonably quickly when you consider the 2 1/2 hour length. Ignore the major critics ratings. The major critics like gay cowboys, southern racists (apparently the only racists who ever lived), and environmentalist heroes and could not care less about a good story or interesting characters. Expand
  3. Dec 14, 2012
    I hate how the reviewers base their reviews on comparisons between The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.

    Next time you write a review, focus on the movie itself and not the elements outside of it.
  4. Dec 14, 2012
    Going into the theater for the midnight showing I was eager to see the film but afraid. I had been burned by Star Wars Episode 1 some 13 years ago and was worried I would once again feel the harsh sting of disappointment by high expectations. I was pleasantly surprised.

    First off, I must say that it's a miracle that this film was even made, never mind by Peter Jackson and the crew
    responsible for the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. After being in "Production Hell" for what felt like years, word got out it was finally being made. I was excited but weary of the director who I have had the misfortune of not seeing any of his films which I hear are great. Then said director bailed on the project completely. All hope seemed lost, but like the great wizard Gandalf, Peter Jackson himself stepped in to save the day and my expectations went through the roof.

    So what happened between that, the trailers, and opening night that got me so worried? Reviews. What did I read? "The CGI makes all the creatures look fake, the cameos are pointless, the movie is too long, too childish etc. So the point being is that this movie is Episode 1 all over again, Peter Jackson has lost his edge and Middle-Earth as we know it has be scared beyond recognition. After seeing the film I can tell you that while I can see the critics points ultimately they are nitpicking an otherwise great film. Never mind unfairly comparing this lone film to an entire trilogy.

    So lets get down to the meat of this review. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is a great film. It's fun, exciting, emotional, and all the things I expected from the first installment of a new trilogy set in the LOTR universe. Gandalf the Grey is the old wizard you remember from the Fellowship of the Ring and I found him to be as likable as ever, the same goes for other returning characters such as Old Bilbo, Frodo, Elrond, and even Saruman. Somehow age has not slowed these actors down a bit and aside from a few easily overlooked extra wrinkles these are the exact same characters we met in the original LOTR trilogy.

    As for the new characters, the 13 dwarfs are surprisingly fun to watch. I was so afraid we would have 13 Gimlis on screen at all times and the movie would be crippled by this but instead we get a band of likable characters reminiscent of the fellowship from the first LOTR film. A few dwarves stand out while the rest feel second-tier but that's to be expected with such a large cast and doesn't detract from the film as a whole.

    It wouldn't be Middle-Earth without a few notable bad guys to talk about and this movie has a few. From the dragon Smaug who we only get a glimpse of in the film to the lead dwarf Thorins arch nemesis Azog. This character looks the most artificial of all the CGI creatures in the movie but when I think about it I'm not sure they could convey such emotion (raw hatred) in the wretch any other way. Either way he is the main villain for the first part of this story and is as menacing as any enemy the fellowship came face to face with in LOTR. Speaking of menacing CGI villains I have to talk about Gollum. He is the same creature we all know from The Two Towers and Return of the King but this time he is better portrayed as an evil monster that we should fear rather than the menacing, sometimes comical, creature he was in LOTR. I'm trying to keep this review spoiler free so all Ill say is the movie wastes no time in reminding you that Gollum is not there for a comic relief cameo. He was part of The Hobbit to begin with and is treated as such.

    The movie is around 3 hours long and while any unengaged viewer might find that too long to sit still, any fan will tell you that the film isn't long enough. It's pacing is extremely similar to the extended version of The Fellowship of the Ring. Again, not spoiling things, but if you can sit though and enjoy that film you will have no problem with An Unexpected Journey. The adventure proper doesn't start until nearly 45 minutes into the film, leaving plenty of time to introduce you to the characters and the nature of the the main character Bilbo Baggins. Speaking a which...

    Martin Freeman plays him perfectly and not once to you feel like he is either playing a young Ian Holm, playing Bilbo or trying to make the character his own unique entity. Ultimately Freeman's Bilbo is the character we saw in LOTR, read about in the books, and is the ideal image of Bilbo Baggins. If you didn't care for him in LOTR you will develop a new appreciation for him through this new trilogy.

    The Hobbit finally has a proper representation on film and fits almost seamlessly with the LOTR Trilogy. I can easily recommend this film to any fan of the books, movies, or anyone looking for a great action adventure film. I can't wait to see the next two films and plan on seeing The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey again.
  5. Dec 14, 2012
    I felt home again. Everything was perfect. Thank you for bringing just a little bit more beauty to this world, cast and crew of The Hobbit. There is not a single complaint I can come up with for this film. By all means, I don't want to.
  6. Dec 14, 2012
    Just Excellent! Pure Brilliance... Definitely movie of the year! The cast are just spot on [Gotta love Radagast the Brown] and music is as ethereal as ever; simply pure genius.
  7. Dec 14, 2012
    I believe this to be another situation where the movie critics are out of touch with what people actually enjoy. The scenery was spot on, the acting was very good, and the script had a lot of development in it; granted three movies might be a stretch(primary reason it gets a 9 instead of a 10). As a parent who's kid just finished reading the Hobbit and will soon be finished the Lord of the Rings book; she's hardly put them down over the last couple weeks. These movies are a boon: Expand
  8. Dec 14, 2012
    This film is easily as good as any of the films in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. It is a little different in tone, though the difference feels entirely appropriate.
  9. Dec 14, 2012
    The best movie of this year. Martin born to Bilbo like Ian McKellen born to Gandalf. 48fps are awesome and CGI effect are masterpiece. This movie is great!
  10. Dec 14, 2012
    extremely confused by the critics response to this, i would completely disregard most reviews as this is an excellent film. More lighthearted than LOTR, but then if jackson had given it exactly the same approach people would have criticised him for it. The length seems appropriate, as i didn't notice any sections dragging on and was interested throughout. overall it's an excellent film. IGNORE REVIEWS Expand
  11. Dec 14, 2012
    After reading mixed critics I begun to worry.

    You shouldn't. Critics do not like it because they keep comparing it with LOTR, and it is not. This is an adventure written on a kids book. The story is lighter, and the only thing that LOTR and this have in common is the place and the ring.

    I watched it on 48fps and I really liked it. It made 3d more appealing and everything beautiful.
    The only problem of 48fps was that it was so real, that sometimes you could notice cgi.

    But the technology is not the film, just the media and I am reviewing the film (although I liked 48fps)

    The story is faithful to the book and brought me back to a place I thought I would never visit again. Just being back in middle earth is amazing.

    Martin as Bilbo, Richard as Thorin and Ian as Gandalf reprise their roles with excellence. And thanks to the division into three films we get to know more about the other dwarfs and care about them.

    The riddles in the dark scene is outstanding. And Howard Shore's composition is brilliant as ever.

    I could not have wanted more from this film. A fun, and amazing comeback to a great adventure to come.
  12. Dec 14, 2012
    First of all, the professional critics who gave this movie below a 65, you are shortsighted whining idiots. I've seen The Hobbit in IMAX 3D HFR and it was awesome. Okay the HFR is something to get used to, especially when the camera is moving it looks like it is played in fast forward. But the images itself look beautiful sharp. The CG looked pitch perfect, so i don't know if i wanna see every movie in HFR but i can see a bright future for all high end CG movies like Avatar in 48fps. A lot of critics are complaining about the slow pace in the beginning, but that is exaggerated, it is entertaining from start to finish. After 25 minutes you are thrown in the adventure and it doesn't let go of you, foregoing from the funny scene's with the drarves in the beginning.The story is great and characters are all very good and very likeable. Martin Freeman as Jong Bilbo is the more then perfect person for the role. The cinematography is top notch, Andrew Lesnie you are legend. The scène riddles in the dark was awesome and Gollum OMG does CG ever gonna get better. Everyone go see this film and Peter Jackson and crew thank you for letting us visit beautiful Middle Earth again. Expand
  13. Dec 14, 2012
    First and foremost, I did not, will not and don't suggest you see this film in 3D in any form. Watch it as it was intended. That being said, this was a HELL of a kickoff for the upcoming movies and was just downright great to watch. The beginning prologue with the Fellowship tie-in was a nice addition, and the acting at all levels was superb. I will admit, there were moments where I had to keep myself awake (I'm not a midnight person at all), but that's to be expected in a film that is the first of multiple. It's a pity the Metascore is so low, somewhat shocking; this was a great film and any LOTR fan will recognize every single location in this movie - Jackson did an incredible job recreating Gollum's Cave, Goblin Town, Dale, Hobbiton, Rivendell, etc., etc. Expand
  14. Dec 14, 2012
    Alright, all these negative critics' reviews of The Hobbit have gotten my jimmies in a rustle, so I've prepared a cup of "Too Long; Didn't Read" to start your morning off the right way.

    "It's not as good as the LotR Trilogy." : This is an adaptation of a bedtime story for children. This isn't supposed to be a complex Drama-Epic for adults. It's a wondrous fantasy spectacle for young'ns,
    so Tolkien hadn't Expand
  15. Dec 14, 2012
    Couldn't have hoped for a better movie to begin a new trilogy in the Lotr universe. The graphics were incredible (I'm currently studying in the 3D industry, and I honestly don't understand those who said that the CGI was bad), the story had a lot of depth, the characters were incredibly well played and the music honored the lotr trilogy while having its own spirit.

    There will always be
    haters. But if you're a true fan of the 1st trilogy, then this movie is for you. The user score don't lie; 8.4 for a movie is quite rare. Congratulation again on the new beginning! Expand
  16. Dec 14, 2012
    Seeing the mixed reviews by the critics makes me wonder if people read books anymore. If you read "The Hobbit", then you know that it is a light hearted kid friendly movie (with some serious moments). If you're going in to the movie thinking "It's Lord of the Rings again!" then you will be disappointed. Jackson and co. did the book tremendous justice.
  17. Dec 14, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The Hobbit is based around Bilbo Baggins in his prime, where he goes, well, on an unexpected journey. After watching the enitre LoTR series, i found myself to despise Bilbo for his distasteful obsession with the ring. But after watching The Hobbit, i no longer disliked him, but actually began to like him, even more so than Frodo. The whole 48FPS deal was in my opinion, completely brilliant, although not much technical work has to be put into it to bring up the frame rate, it made the movie look much more realistic, and at times I had trouble depicting whether something was CGI or real. The 48fps makes everything much smoother and makes the cgi have life-like movements. The story for The Hobbit was not as strong as the story in the LoTR series, but i felt that it came pretty close, the movie does not contain nearly as much dialogue as the LoTR series but it definitely fulfills why we all love these movies, the fantasy aspect. Overall, i'd have to say that i enjoyed this movie slightly more than the LoTR series, In most aspects. If you are a LoTR fan, GO SEE THIS MOVIE, if you have never seen any of the LoTR movies, GO WATCH THEM, and then GO SEE THIS MOVIE. Expand
  18. Dec 14, 2012
    THE 48FPS IS PERFECTLY FINE AND AMAZING. (I wanted to say that first because all the idiotic critic reviews of the framerate making them sick almost deterred me from going) The fps does take about twenty minutes to get adjusted to, but when you get used to it everything looks amazing. The best looking CGI I have ever seen. Regarding the story line it was a tiny bit slow during the beginning, but can anyone say all parts of every lotr movie were 100% interesting and captivating? No. Once the movie picks up its a fantastic adventure with TONS of action, great dialogue, fantastic musical score reminiscent of LOTR and stunning cinematography. Don't compare this to LOTR, because it's not meant to be. It's an epic adventure in its own right. I watched this movie in 3D 48FPS and i plan to watch it many more times in exactly the same setting. Movies are meant to be this. Expand
  19. Dec 14, 2012
    I was hesitant because of some of the negative reviews, but they were easily set aside within the first half hour. This is a fantastic film. I sincerely think the "professional' reviewers are seeing a different film than I saw, because the one I saw kept me glued in my seat from beginning to end. It was surpassed Fellowship in a lot of ways: better pacing, tighter story, more action, a bit more whimsical, and the characters! I'm a huge LOTR fan, but the dwarves, Bilbo, and Gandalf all really shine here. They have much more personality than was presented in Fellowship (and I do love Fellowship).

    Overall, don't listen to the negative reviews a lot of sites are posting. This is one of the best fantasy movies I've ever seen.
  20. Dec 14, 2012
    Wow, i almost didn't go to watch this film, what with all the bad reviews! I'm so glad, i did now! To be honest it was a fantastic film! Welcome back to middle earth, only a year to wait for part 2! :( :(
  21. Dec 14, 2012
    Marked it down a point for two very ropey effects (spotted), an inappropriate Joss Whedon-esque line of dialogue courtesy of the Goblin King and a **** Wilhelm Scream.

    Otherwise pure brilliance
  22. Dec 14, 2012
    So, I've just seen the Hobbit. And I can honestly say that I am blown away by how good it was. I can see why the long introduction would be a problem for some people, but if you are a fan, you will appreciate it very much. Its very descriptive and atmospheric. Once you are past the 40 minute introductory mark, the fun begins, and since then, its pretty much action packed. The humor is excellent, and the actors put an awesome performance. Not to mention how beautiful the landscapes and effects are. The music is another strong side of the movie, and does not fail to bring you closer to Middle Earth.

    My final verdict 10/10.
  23. Dec 14, 2012
    I loved it! It's pace is rather relaxed when compared to the previous movies, but I was more than happy to sit back and absorb the scenery and atmosphere. I liked the dwarves and I sympathize with their lost patrimony. The movie did everything it needed to do, plus some appreciated extras. This will not be my last time seeing this movie. Can't wait to see Smaug!
  24. Dec 14, 2012
    The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey manages to maintain the feeling that you are watching a film set in Middle Earth while being different enough to stand on it's own. The main difference is that the story is much lighter than The Lord of the Rings, much like the book. This allows for a more humourous tone throughout the film and a little more free rein for the writers to adapt it to a full feature length movie(s).

    Yes, it is a long movie which could be shorter. Does it need to be shorter? For me the answer is no. I've always loved the world that Tolkien created and I was a little worried before watching it as to whether it would be too long or, more importantly, lose the magic of the first three films. If anything, it has reinvigorated my love for it. Have you ever watched something you loved and wish you could see it again as if you've never seen it before? Well if you felt that way about The Lord of the Rings then this is the closest you'll come to that experience. It is a wonderful film. Fans will love it and if those who are a little skeptical just approach it with an open mind, they'll love it too.
  25. Dec 14, 2012
    Freaking awesome movie. Saw it in 3D and thought it was beautifully filmed. The story was very tight and you are left wanting more and more. I found the scenes with Bilbo and Gollum chilling. I got goosebumps for the last hour.
  26. Dec 14, 2012
    awsome a great prequel to lord of the ring.very funny,awsome fights,a good story,golum,and amazing i think that a great prequel to lord of the rings and i will give it 10/10.
  27. Dec 14, 2012
    Its a masterpiece. No sinister "LotR-mood", but that wasnt to expect. It takes as much time, as it needs and all the time is awesome. I just cant believe, that the Metascore is below 60....
  28. Dec 14, 2012
    The Hobbit is an amazing movie that serves as a prequel to the Lord of the Rings. I can write pages dedicated towards a summary, strengths, and personal thoughts but they all add up to one sentence: "The Hobbit is the best film to come out in 2012 for any fan of fantasy or Tolkien's novels." The film looks beautiful, characters are fun and memorable, and the special effects look amazing. The Hobbit has everything that made the Lord of the Rings great. If you enjoyed entering Middle Earth over a decade ago, then I highly suggest watching the Hobbit.

    10/10 Great movie.
  29. Dec 14, 2012
    "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" have respected my expectations, it's an amazing movie, that respects the original Tolkien's work, and it is linked with the LOTR trilogy thanks to elements picked up by the Silmarillion and LOTR Appendices cleverly inserted by Peter Jackson!!
    Costumes, soundtrack, and interpretations were perfect, i loved Armitage as Thorin and Freeman as Bilbo!
    watched the movie in HFR 3D, and I fully refute the criticism towards this new technology, it was amazing! It takes 10 minutes to get used to the eye, but the result was incredible! An image sharpness never seen before! Good job PJ, 9/10 Expand
  30. Dec 14, 2012
    The Lord of the Rings is one of the best sagas in all time of movies bout the Hobbit its not Lord of the Rings you have to understand this and its different but its very good too.

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.