I think this is my all-time favorite story arc from the Lord of the Rings movies – following Aragorn’s acceptance of his lineage to eventually rise to become the new King of Gondor. I love the music, love the dialog between him and Arwen, her and her father, and finally Elrond and Aragorn as he brings hope to men with the famed sword itself….

And I have no idea how I never watched this video before, but here’s a sweet look at a smithy actually making the sword that was broken! This would be so cool to have up on the wall … at least once we get past the toddler years and I don’t have to worry about a kid stabbing his brother or sister with it, mind you. 😀

Dream Journal : Balrog Hide and Seek

July 3, 2015 3:58pm
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So Gandalf, Frodo, and I were fighting the Balrog … apparently in the setting of some sort of Laurel & Hardy skit!

We were inside a small log cabin and he was outside.

First, Frodo went out the door “to distract the Balrog,” which didn’t work well because he was immediately eaten.

Then Gandalf and I noticed a second door on the side of the house, so as the Balrog banged on the door like he was the Big, Bad Wolf asking to come in, we ran over to the other door and snuck out the side entrance.

We rounded the corner of the house just in time to see the Balrog ducking in the front door, sneaking back into the house ourselves when he discovered the side door and came back out.

This game pretty much continued on and on FOREVER. 😕

hobbit3So … at least we shouldn’t have to worry about The Simarillion getting made into a movie too, right?


Anyways, as for this final chapter in the unnecessarily long hobbit trilogy, I guess I look at it like this – from the perspective of one last adventure with these rich characters and simply seeing how it all unfolds on screen, I enjoyed the movie for the most part. The same ones that I’d grown fond of in the previous episodes – Bilbo (obviously), Thorin, Balin, and I’d even built more of a liking for Kili and Young Legolas in this finale … it was fun to see those characters up on the screen one last time.

That said, I think that by far the biggest detractor for me with this movie, as well as frankly the trilogy as a whole, as just how much off base from the books the entire series featured. I mean, I didn’t even have to go back and re-read the book to know that Sauron was barely mentioned in The Hobbit, yet Peter Jackson seemed to go to great lengths to tie this series back to the original Lord of the Rings, which honestly kind of hurt it a bit in my book because it seemed like maybe otherwise he thought that the story couldn’t hold its own without.

Which of course is just silly, but I suppose when millions of dollars and franchising and merchandise are to be considered, maybe the story isn’t always at the top of everyone’s list … which is sad.

As cool as it was to see Elrond brandish a sword, I didn’t think the battle of the White Council vs. the Nazgul fit with this movie any more than darkness brewing fit in either of the other chapters.

There were a lot of little things – Bard having his son help him slay Smaug, Azog coming up through the ice, the whole romance between Tauriel and Kili … here I wasn’t super crazy about stretching a 300-page book into a movie trilogy, but it makes you wonder if The Hobbit could’ve been a really great one or even two-part story had all of this new material to bridge the two series not been crammed into the story in the first place.

Ultimately, my big question when I walked into An Unexpected Journey two years ago was whether at the end of it all The Hobbit would stand in the same epic sense that the Lord of the Rings does as a truly amazing series of movies that is kind of iconic of its time.

And sadly, I don’t think it does.

Maybe it’s the same problem that the Star Wars prequels ran into when your predecessors are so great that there’s simply nowhere to go but down at that point – I don’t know.

At the end of the day, I can still see myself watching these three movies again from time to time when they come on TV, but whether I’ll anxiously look forward to a movie marathon of the trilogy each and every Thanksgiving for years to come?! Not likely. 🙁

Lego Smaug Be MAD!!!!!

November 1, 2014 1:14pm
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I don’t know how in the world I missed it earlier this summer, but pretty much everything that Brotherhood Workshop puts out is bona fide gold!

…and only 47 more days until the last chapter in the series is finally revealed… 😯

Best piece of dialogue in the movie.

I suppose you can guess which option I chose tonight, eh?  🙄


### SPOILERS ###

So … I didn’t like the ending … at all.

I know that these aren’t going to be popular opinions because everyone so far seems to be raving about this movie, and don’t get me wrong, I want to be raving about this movie, too! But often as it seems, the movie that I actually saw this evening was a stark contrast to the movie that I was expecting to see…

Ultimately, my disappoint can be distilled into two categories:

  1. The break point at the end
  2. Deviations from the actual book

So let’s talk about #1 first because frankly I was willing to overlook everything else until I saw those credits fly prematurely, and then I was instantly pretty miffed. Simple put – this movie should’ve ended with Smaug’s death and foreshadowing into the Battle of Five Armies.

Breaking the movie where it did left the story feeling unfinished to me, like they got to the mountain and met Smaug and … we’ll just deal with everything else next time! At least with the Lord of the Rings, each of the three books ended with climatic results – the fellowship was both formed and broken, one of the two towers fell, and lastly, the king did return. And I thought that it was going to be similar for this trilogy, too – I was a little unsure of where they could do the breaks going into An Unexpected Journey, but the last scene after the warg attack in the tree with the party looking out at the Lonely Mountain in the distance was damn near perfect…

…so I only assumed that the other logical breaking point would be after Bard kills Smaug and everyone starts to fight over the treasures of Erebor, but when instead the credits rolled just as Smaug was departing to lay waste to Lake Town, my heart kind of sunk because, well, there’s nothing like sitting for three hours to not watch a story come to completion in any way, shape, or form!  😕

As for #2, this is where I think I really need to go back and re-read the book because maybe my memory is fuzzy, and admittedly I’m basing some of it on what other people are confirming until I read it again for myself, but this movie just felt like it had a lot of deviations from what Tolkien wrote into the actual book. Like LEGOLAS, for starters – love the guy in LOTR, but there was really no reason aside from a familiar face that we can make do cool stuff to have him make an appearance in The Hobbit at all. Sure, watching him dance around on dwarf heads as they were floating down the river battling orcs was amusing, but did it need to happen? Not really, nor did we need the whole Tauriel / Legolas / Kili love triangle, either.

Plus, not for nothing but he’s kind of an asshole in this movie! Too much eye liner and too much spunk – I guess if he was trying to show Legolas’ arch leading up to when he joins the Fellowship of the Ring, but he just felt really out of place in this story when pretty much any other generic elf would’ve done just fine.

All of the stuff about Sauron felt really forced, too, as if Peter Jackson was just shouting, “Don’t forget that this is the prequel to Lord of the Rings!!!” I certainly don’t remember Gandalf facing off against Sauron in the book, or really any of that foreshadowing at Dol Guldur with building armies and war coming and all of that. And again, maybe I just don’t have the best memory of the book because it has been a while, but just considering it all on the surface, I can’t help but thinking if Jackson hadn’t taken all of these extra liberties with adding new content that maybe … he could’ve done well with only two movies.

That was honestly the biggest concern of mine when The Hobbit was first announced because Lord of the Rings had been three movies based on 1,200 pages of text that was already divided into three books by the original author. So its prequel, The Hobbit, was also going to be three movies based on barely 300 pages of text???

Granted, there were a lot of parts of this movie that I really did like…

  • Bilbo fighting the spiders of Mirkwood
  • Escaping the elves via the barrels
  • The unveiling of Smaug

Still, I just couldn’t help but leave the theater this evening feeling like a lot of things got changed or added that didn’t need to be changed or added, and yet then again, for all I know, the very same types of things may have been done with the Lord of the Rings films, too. And yet even if they were, I genuinely enjoyed the adaptations that the LOTR films were, but Hobbit #2 undoubtedly felt different, and at least for me, the final installment next year is going to really have to knock it out of the park to redeem the prequel trilogy for me because as it stands, I see myself doing a lot of fast forwarding once this one comes out on DVD to skip over all of the post-Tolkien era fluff that doesn’t do much to progress the actual story.

Bummer.  😥

I was thinking about going to see this tonight and even had the wife’s buy-in for the midnight showing, but the more I thought about it, there was just something not so fun about the prospect of getting home from a movie at 4am and then having to be awake again at 8am for work!

So goes adulthood, I suppose… 😛

Nonetheless, we are going to see it this weekend, so I’m still pretty excited about that. I actually didn’t get a chance to watch the Lord of the Rings over Thanksgiving weekend like I normally do, so I’m kind of jonesin’ for some Middle Earthean adventures at this point! I find it interesting how LOTR has sort of become a holiday memory for me – even though it was only the first two movies, I remember going to see them for the first time with my cousins after we had eaten Christmas dinner … because I guess that’s what kids do when they’re kind of grown up and don’t bring their Nintendo up to Grandma & Grandpa’s house for the holidays anymore!

says the guy who just re-hooked up his original SNES in his office… 😉

Anyways, hope it ends up being just as awesome as I’ve been anticipating … the first one was pretty good, but I’m still looking for a little something more to really lift The Hobbit up to the level of its theatrical predecessor. Will the great and powerful Smaug be the one to give LOTR a run for its trilogy?!

The Hobbit Couch Gag on The Simpsons…

October 30, 2013 3:01pm
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This is pretty great! I don’t know which is better – Moe as Gollum or Mr. Burns as Smaug…

Birthday Legos!!!

August 27, 2013 8:20pm
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photo (5)

Somebody’s got some building to do!

*Note: Birthday Legos technically also include the awesomely impressive Tower of Orthanc that very magically did show up on my doorstep as a birthday gift from my Mom … albeit a couple of months ago…

**Sub-Note: Definitely need to take some cool pictures to post of all of my LOTR Lego sets to date once I get around to finishing my awesome Lego shelves for the family room…

***P.P.S.: But you technically don’t really know about those, either, so … ummmm … will post more info soon!  :mrgreen:

Just came across this over on The Brothers Brick today – apparently it comes out on July 1 and retails for $200 … plus, it even includes an Ent!

Sounds like a pretty good birthday gift for somebody who’s got a special day coming up, oh say, later on this summer, perhaps…


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