Re: The Hobbit

5852
The doorbell just rang and there was the postman with my EE+statue movie! :cheers:

I should note, in case it might help shed some light on what is going on, that I got the 3-disc version of the set, which is not the 3D one, which I think includes 5 discs. Maybe the one that Amazon is having problems supplying is the 3D version, but then BC said he ordered the 2D version, so who knows? My set includes: Disc 1: EE Movie + Commentary and NZ: Home of Middle-earth. Disc 2: The Appendices Part 11: The Gathering Storm and the Chronicles of the Hobbit Part 3. Disc 3: The Appendices Part 12: Here at Journey's End. There is also a code for digital download of the movie.

More than enough for me, I don't want 3D that I will never have a use for. Just happy Amazon.ca finally pulled through for me just for once. :thumbs_up
This Space for Rent

Re: The Hobbit

5856
BladeCollector wrote:
Olorin wrote:Well, all you guys enjoy your EEs while I wait another month for mine! :angry:

:D

I got that Dec 18 email too... maybe yours will show up unexpectedly soon!
They've never quoted me any particular date. They said they don't know when they're getting it.
"Olorin I was in the West that is forgotten...."

Re: The Hobbit

5858
Somebody did a phantom edit of one of the supplements, making it sound like PJ and crew admitted they made a steaming pile of a movie, which is causing a lot of uproar.

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-enter ... 40136.html

Also

http://www.theonering.net/torwp/2015/11 ... -a-teacup/

We've all discussed the problems the movie had and wondered why it had them. We also wondered how much of del Toro remained in this movie and that answer seems to be "his name in the credits as project consultant." Apparently PJ threw out everything and started over from scratch, with essentially no prep time.
"Olorin I was in the West that is forgotten...."

Re: The Hobbit

5859
For what it's worth, my wife ordered it on Amazon (US) November 17, and as we're Prime Members, it will be arriving Sunday (Amazon has been delivering things on Sunday's when you do the 2-day Prime Shipping). So it says it's in the mail. And the tracking is working on USPS's website. She ordered me the 2D 3disc set that I believe Val received, with statue.

Re: The Hobbit

5861
Olorin wrote:Somebody did a phantom edit of one of the supplements, making it sound like PJ and crew admitted they made a steaming pile of a movie, which is causing a lot of uproar.

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-enter ... 40136.html

Also

http://www.theonering.net/torwp/2015/11 ... -a-teacup/

We've all discussed the problems the movie had and wondered why it had them. We also wondered how much of del Toro remained in this movie and that answer seems to be "his name in the credits as project consultant." Apparently PJ threw out everything and started over from scratch, with essentially no prep time.
I'm really disappointed that that footage is being used against him. Whilst I wasn't fully happy with the EE of the BOFA, I still have huge respect for him and hope he isn't taking these criticisms badly.
"All those moments will be lost, in time... like tears, in the rain..."

Re: The Hobbit

5862
Olorin wrote:Somebody did a phantom edit of one of the supplements, making it sound like PJ and crew admitted they made a steaming pile of a movie, which is causing a lot of uproar.

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-enter ... 40136.html

Also

http://www.theonering.net/torwp/2015/11 ... -a-teacup/

We've all discussed the problems the movie had and wondered why it had them. We also wondered how much of del Toro remained in this movie and that answer seems to be "his name in the credits as project consultant." Apparently PJ threw out everything and started over from scratch, with essentially no prep time.
That's not new news. Pete said as much in several interviews he gave during the production, but the lack of time to prep was really for the Battle of the Five armies block, which they took a long break to completely prepare before shooting. I just finished the BOFA EE documentaries, which are fantastic, and show all of this in depth. The rest of the shooting went about like the LOTR shooting did - finishing things just in time before shooting and shooting in a very organic way, as Pete always does.

Del Toro was a co writer along with PJ, Fran and Phillipa, so his input was throughout. PJ said from day one that he could not make someone else's movie and that it would have to be his vision, hence (almost) no designs from Del Toro's production were used. From what I have heard, that was a good thing - at least as far as keeping some design continuity with the LOTR films.
KRDS

Re: The Hobbit

5864
I can't imagine there isn't but I haven't been looking for one and so haven't seen one.

I'd like an empty box to put my bought-separately sets in, but in the mean time I'll settle for getting my BOTFA EE, for which Amazon still doesn't have a ship date.
"Olorin I was in the West that is forgotten...."

Re: The Hobbit

5869
All good things come to those who wait...I finally got my gift set of BOTFA 3D plus statue. Amazon had some sort of availability problem with it, and it didn't come till today.

I haven't watched it yet, not sure how long it will be before I can tear myself away from binge-watching 9 seasons of The X Files on BD, but I did check out the battle of Dol Guldur scene. I think they apparently improved the quality of the effects in that scene. They don't look quite as hokey as they did before (I'm referring to Sauron and Nazgul floating in the sky part of it).
"Olorin I was in the West that is forgotten...."

Re: The Hobbit

5870
OK, tonight I watched the BOTFA EE and I was quite pleased. I was stunned by the amount of significant moments that were cut from the battle that now have returned in the EE. I'm not talking about little bits of added violence here and there, I'm talking about major moments and sequences for pretty much all the main characters. For example, we see how Bifur finally loses the axe blade out of his head. Of course, we also see the goat-pulled chariot scene, and though it was pretty much over the top, I enjoyed it and got a kick out of it, orc gore and all. I expected PJ to go off the rails in this EE and though he did in terms of some of the action, there's nothing that bothered me or felt disruptive, like fart scenes or too much Paths of the Dead material in the ROTK EE.

Incidentally, I think this version of the movie has more beheadings and more blood than all 5 of the other Middle-earth movies put together! So even though it's black blood and doesn't look like real blood, I can understand why this got rated R...it's quite brutal in places. What I don't understand is the description the MPAA gave for the rating..."some violence." Really? All the other movies were rated PG-13 and had descriptions like "intense fantasy violence," and this one just has "some violence"? Oh well.

Anyway, though I had to wait about 6 weeks longer than everyone else to get my EE, I have it and I'm happy with it. I'll try to watch the supplements over the weekend.

Strangely enough, I may be getting a second copy of this. When Amazon shipped it earlier this week, they never got it into their tracking system that it was shipped or delivered. They changed the status to shipping now and authorized my card, but I got no further indications of its status till I found it on my porch Tuesday evening. Well today I got a shipping notice from Amazon. It's using the same tracking number as the box I already received and when I look at the tracking, I see the first box that as shipped from Kentucky and delivered to me, and I see a second listing shipped from Tennessee today and due tomorrow. In the meantime, the charge has been removed from my credit card. So for the moment, I am about to be the owner of 2 EE gift sets, cost $0. Of course, I fully anticipate that they will reinstate the charge. Also, should this second one actually materialize on my doorstep, I will contact them to arrange for return. Amazon can be a bit frustrating sometimes, like their delays and screwups, but I don't believe in cheating them.
"Olorin I was in the West that is forgotten...."

Re: The Hobbit

5872
Ooooo, I need to see it now! I love the EE's and I was hoping the BOTFA would improve with time.
"As the light upon the leaves of trees, as the voice of clear waters, as the stars above the mists of the world, such was her glory and her loveliness; and in her face was a shining light."

Re: The Hobbit

5873
Well, I finally got around to watching the EE Trilogy. WOW, what a difference it makes. AUJ was nice with the addition of more Shire scenes, you get a little more character development throughout and some nice expanded scenery. DOS and BoFA were completely different films, though. I can't believe how much of Beorn's scenes were cut froml tDOS, all for the sake of seeing Alfred be a goon. I still felt that the Mirkwood sequence was too short, but I can see why PJ and Co wanted to hurry it along. There was a lot of time devoted to Smaug and the inside of Erebor. I can also see why BoFA's Extended Edition got an R rating. They really got creative with the killing! It was nice to see a little development in the Battle, which was horrendously rushed in the theatrical cut. I also really liked the extra time devoted to Thorin, Fili and Kili's funeral. That was a really well done and solemn scene. I wish that there would have been more explanation to Dain's crowing other than just seeing him with the crown on his head for a split second. I also hoped for a little more closure on Bard's situation. It makes me wonder if any of that was ever filmed. Regardless, completely different film with the added scenes, ranging from great character development to the usual ridiculous (Legolas slashing heads from a bat), and I enjoyed it all. I loved Balin on that cart, despite it being a little over the top. Same goes for Bofur on that slave troll! Cheesy but I really loved it. :viking: :laugh:
"Remember, the force will be with you, always."

Re: The Hobbit

5874
I don't recall if anyone posted about this...it dates to Jan 2013.
I had never seen it before now.
Pretty entertaining really..... Any legal beagles out there should enjoy it.

"A Lawyer's Amazingly Detailed Analysis of Bilbo's Contract in The Hobbit"

http://www.wired.com/2013/01/hobbit-con ... -analysis/


"Unless you're prepared to surrender everything, don't surrender anything."

When seconds matter, it's reassuring to know that the police are only minutes away.

"Only the paranoid survive."

Re: The Hobbit

5876
Fingolfin wrote:Wow, what a read! I should put that in front of my mother sometime and see what she thinks. :rolleye:
Mom a lawyer, or maybe a para-legal?


"Unless you're prepared to surrender everything, don't surrender anything."

When seconds matter, it's reassuring to know that the police are only minutes away.

"Only the paranoid survive."

Re: LOTR TV adaptation

5878
I've not seen it but if it removes the following items, I'm all in:

- Tauriel/Kili romance
- Ridiculous ninja Nazgul and their changed history
- Turning Smaug the Golden literally into Smaug the Golden
- Every scene including Alfrid
- A third of the group staying behind in Laketown
- The part when the kitchen sink joins the Battle of the Five Armies
- Legolas - I would have been more than ok if the cameo stopped at him being present when the Dwarves are captured in Mirkwood, and maybe seen silently at his father's side in the throne room. Full stop. Over. Period.
This Space for Rent

Re: The Hobbit

5879
OK, so I moved the last two posts from the LOTR TV adaptation thread to here, where they more properly belong. I probably wouldn't have bothered but for the desire to opine on the subject myself. And that opinion is a defense of the existing movies, at least in concept/principle.

I think there are several foregone conclusions about any movies that would have been made of The Hobbit, no matter who made them:
-Female characters would have been added.
-An attempt would have been made to address aspects of the book which don't fly in a movie format, such as Gandalf's disappearances with no real explanation, and more importantly, the omission of a depiction of the BOTFA. It's one thing to write a book for young children and have your main character get bonked on the head at the beginning of the big scary battle and wake up only when it's all over, and quite another to make a movie of the book after it's been a classic of fantasy for decades, especially when it's had a much more detailed and successful sequel.
-An effort would have been made to bring in the rich background material from the LOTR appendices, i.e., the White Council and so forth.

Now obviously, the above changes could have been accomplished in different ways, and probably more successfully than PJ did. Rather than going at this directly myself, I'll springboard from Val's points.

- Tauriel/Kili romance
I would definitely have toned this down, at a minimum. Like I say, it's a given that female characters would have been added. The only two well-known females from the mythology who were alive during the timeframe of The Hobbit were Galadriel, who was added, and Arwen, whose addition wouldn't have made much sense without Aragorn. I don't think any of us would have wanted to see Arwen shoehorned into the picture, or an even bigger fictitious role crafted for Galadriel, so that leads to creating a character. It's funny, really. Before the movies ever came out, there was a rumor that PJ had created a character called Itaril, a young but kick-butt female elf to be played by Saoirse Ronan. Outrage ensued and PJ backed off, at least in theory. But all he really did was change the name to Tauriel (which it least derives from the wood for forest), make her a bit older, and cast Evangeline Lilly. So we get Tauriel. How do we tie here into the story, to real characters? Obviously with a love triangle! Ugh. I don't have a problem with Legolas having an interest in her, or with Kili having an interest in her, though there's the question of degree. If it had just been portrayed as an awestruck admiration, such as Gimli's for Galadriel, it would have been one thing (though I still think I'd have nit-picked it for being another attempt to carbon-copy elements from LOTR and stick them in here). But to make it more of a romantic love ultimately defies credulity. OK sure, they picked a really handsome actor, but will Tauriel still be attracted to him when he gets a little older and his beard is down to his knees? And so forth. I suppose on could argue that Tolkien opened the door for inter-species romance with his several Elf/Human couplings, but let's not add more.

- Ridiculous ninja Nazgul and their changed history
Not much argument on this one! Include them? Sure, if you're going to include Sauron. But the way they were depicted? Nope! In addition to appearing ridiculous, it begs the question why they don't have these abilities in the LOTR movies.

- Turning Smaug the Golden literally into Smaug the Golden
This was a bit silly, maybe more than a bit, but the bigger problem is how it drags out the length of the movie. I can understand why PJ wanted to give Smaug more to do, including direct interaction with the dwarves. In the book, he and Bilbo have their chat, he torches Laketown, and meets his demise. I think any filmmaker would have wanted to get more screen time with the character. But how PJ did it didn't really work for me.

- Every scene including Alfrid
Yes, Alfrid was a toad. Scratch that, toads are inoffensive, beneficial little animals. Alfrid is a distillation of obnoxious qualities, given flesh. I think PJ wanted to have a through-going character to be a thorn in Bard's side, even after the Master bites it, and for that matter to give the Master someone to interact with for purposes of character development. But good, bad, or indifferent, Alfrid is another character whose continued use further drags the movie away from feeling like the book it is supposed to be based on.

- A third of the group staying behind in Laketown
I think PJ did this to give us eyewitness account of what happens in Laketown, but maybe that's giving too much credit. I suppose in the end it's just to give Tauriel and Kili more time together. But it's a big break in feeling from the book, even though it mirrors the way LOTR splits the Fellowship into sub-groups.

- The part when the kitchen sink joins the Battle of the Five Armies
LOL! For the most part, I like how the battle was staged, especially when you consider it pretty much had to be invented from whole cloth, given the lack of guidance from the book . I liked Dain's army riding rams, I liked Billy Connolly as Dain (though I'd have preferred him not to be CGI), I liked the "twirly-whirlies," and I liked the Were-worms. But certain parts did get pretty ridiculous: ice-chariot sequence, Legolas dancing up the blocks of a collapsing bridge, etc. I think PJ went into it with an attitude of anything goes and damn the torpedoes. so I supposed it's impressive that it works as well as it does.

- Legolas - I would have been more than ok if the cameo stopped at him being present when the Dwarves are captured in Mirkwood, and maybe seen silently at his father's side in the throne room. Full stop. Over. Period.
I could definitely have seen a role for him as field commander of Thranduil's forces during the BOTFA, but instead we get the side trip to Gundabad. Even that is not a total loss, as we get a visualization of a real place from Middle-earth we would not otherwise have seen, and some of what goes on there is ok. But the whole idea that he is banished at the end of the movie is pretty ludicrous, and the directions Thranduil gives him for finding Aragorn ("go north") would have resulted in him wandering pointlessly in Forodwaith. Was this supposed to be shorthand for "go north and then go west to skirt the Misty Mountains, and then go south into Eriador to find Aragorn"? A ridiculous mistake that 2 seconds looking at the map would have prevented.

Now, the thing that caused me to reply, a bit belatedly, to the previous two posts. First is that last night I watched the BluRay trilogy box set of the first three Spider-man movies, which I received for Christmas. It includes 2 cuts of the third movie: the original cut and an "Editor's Cut," which I'd previously been unaware of. I read a synopsis of the changes on-line, and it sounds like the changes were small and the movie would have remained pretty much the same as it was, something close to a hot mess. But that made me think about these two posts, and to wonder what the prospects were that there might ever be an official revisiting of The Hobbit. Recently, inspired by the work he did on his soon-to-be-released-and-apparently-pretty-stunning WWI documentary, PJ has announced he's going to go back and pretty up his early "naughty period" movies, the puke-eating alien movie and so forth. However, in the same interview he pretty much said he considers the existing cuts of the Middle-earth movies to be the final word. He claims to have no inclination to tinker with them. I suspect he doesn't want to get a reputation like that of George Lucas with Star Wars and all the "Special Editions." While there's a lot to be said for that kind of restraint, personally I find it a bit of a shame, for two reasons. First is that one of his associates (I forget his name, but he had a big role in producing the supplements from the DVDs/BDs) had stated that new footage for LOTR was to be filmed when The Hobbit was filmed. I never heard more about that after that, so I guess we should conclude it never happened. But also, when you watch LOTR now, some of the effects look very dodgy. It would have been nice to see those improved. Of course, going back into these movies to make changes, realistically, would be just as likely to make them worse as better. But I guess I'm the kind of guy who buys a lottery ticket whenever the jackpot gets high.
"Olorin I was in the West that is forgotten...."

Re: The Hobbit

5880
Val and Olorin have made a lot of solid points in the above. I, too, have avoided adding to this discussion but was recently spurned to by recent events. I happened to give the Netflix/BBC adaptation of Watership Down a spin this weekend and found it to be nearly unwatchable for me. I haven't finished it as of yet and I don't know that I will.

What I will add is more of a curiosity than an answerable question. With the massive success of LOTR, I wonder how many of the story and production decisions made for The Hobbit were driven by the studio/marketing? It's my understanding (and this may well be wildly untrue) that PJ had a certain level of freedom with LOTR. The anecdote of pitching the films to New Line as two movie and receiving the "But isn't it three books? Make three films" response comes to mind. So while we'd like to blame PJ and Co., I seriously wonder how many are from them directly. I suspect they lost some of the creative say with the prequels.

Re: The Hobbit

5881
I don't know for sure, but I would hazard a guess that PJ still had full creative control. After taking over from Del Toro, the plan (ostensibly) was for only two movies, and even before that, only one was to concern itself with the events of The Hobbit, while the second would be a bridge movie to LOTR. I'm guessing what we ended up getting was a combo of the studios definitely being open to making more money with a third movie and letting PJ do whatever he wanted, given that he had proven himself with LOTR and brought in the millions by the bucket. Then there was PJ himself, who obviously got carried away with the notion of three movies and had to then find a way to fill the runtime with.... well, bloat. Problem is, the man himself had confessed to being pressed for time to deliver the three movies, resulting in a lot of shortcuts such as cutting down on location shooting, and using CGI for 80% of the whole thing. He also expressed that he was kind of burnt out on Middle-earth as a whole, and it shows in that many of the ideas and concepts were half-baked and ill-conceived. So, to address you final point, I think PJ had all the creative control he wanted, he just opted to make some bizarre and poor calls that come across as little more than hubris since they turned established mythos on its head, and directly contradicted what was established in his LOTR movies in some cases.
This Space for Rent

Re: The Hobbit

5882
I’m gonna start by restating that I enjoy the first two Hobbit movies. On a personal level I’ve always been ok with the fact that the movies aren’t as good as LOTR and in a way I don’t think they ever should be.

But as you know, the BOFA is my least favourite movie in the entire series but I still enjoy certain sections of it - Dol Guldur, Thranduil’s scenes, Thorin’s death.

But battle fatigue ruins the movie for me. The way the movies are structured I’m not sure how it could work trimmed down into one movie and I do like Tauriel as a character but I understand that she’s not everyone’s cup of tea.

I think the main problem this series of films faced was the fact the PJ didn’t want to make the story and he wasn’t interested in it. I know for a fact how hard it is to make something that you’re not passionate about - for me I usually lock the results away in a dark place where they’ll never see the light of day - but he did find a way into the story and began to enjoy it, but I think it was too late. The production on these movies was not as smooth as LOTR and there’d also been a decades worth of anticipation building up which must have added an insane amount of pressure to PJ and the crew.

The last minute departure of Del Toro and then PJ taking up the reigns didn’t leave him much prep time - this is referenced a few times in the appendices included in the extended editions of the movies and we see the full effects of this in the BOFA and also as you rightly pointed out Val.

I also get a sense that there was a pressure to take us back to the world we love but also add new things and keep it feeling interesting - Radagast and his rabbits, an explanation for the Nazgul, Smaug the Golden, a romance between Kili and Tauriel, etc

I still admire and respect PJ but I don’t agree with all of his choices. That being said I’m thankful we got to go back at all as it seemed so unlikely for a long time. They’re not the worst movies on the planet by any stretch of the imagination but they’re also not the best. The LOTR trilogy will always be such an important story for me and so I knew that the Hobbit could never match up to that.
"All those moments will be lost, in time... like tears, in the rain..."

Re: The Hobbit

5883
FWIW, my recollection is that the studio told PJ after filming had started that he had to do 3 movies instead of just 2, so he expanded things. Not sure whether he tried to fight the decision or not. I also suspect Warner was much more hands-on than New Line ever was.
"Olorin I was in the West that is forgotten...."

Re: The Hobbit

5884
WB did not tell PJ he had to make 3 movies, but it was their idea to make two movies instead on one. WB initially wanted a bridge film between LOTR and TH and a TH movie, and that was sort of developed by Del Toro and PJ but dropped when they realized just the events in the book would not fit into one movie. When PJ took over from Del Toro the plan was still to make a 2 part Hobbit. After most of the first rough cut of AUJ was put together they realized there was too much material to fill two movies, so they went to WB to discuss doing three parts, but it would require adding a few sequences.

We knew they were planning three when AUJ was released, even though it was not made public until mid 2012. I suspect PJ had always intended to release it in three parts, as most of the Azog/Sauron/White Council/Gandalf in Dol Guldur material was already shot in the first leg of shooting. He just needed the leverage of the first one being successful to show WB it was worth the cost to split it into three releases.
KRDS

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