Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A Post Related to Neither Food Nor Christmas

My thermometer reads -16.  That is staying-inside-the-house weather, people. 

Today will be a day for cleaning house, catching up on laundry, prepping for tomorrow's dinner, and watching Christmas movies (today will be "Grinch" and "It's a Wonderful Life", tomorrow "A Christmas Carol").

And speaking of movies, I took my three kids to "The Hobbit" last night.  In 3D.  Watching movies "based on" books I absolutely love is usually painful for me.  For example, Keira Knightley's version of Pride and Prejudice was horrid, but the 1996 Colin Firth/Jennifer Ehle version is wonderfully spot-on.  The Harry Potter movies give me fits, and even the 'Lord of the Rings' series is missing key scenes from the books.

However, I keep going to these movies, so the discrepancies must not be enough to ruin the experience.

I am still trying to sort out how I feel about the certain "mistakes" in this film.  Usually, I need a couple of days to work through this.  For example, Legolas was not mentioned in the 'Hobbit' book.  At all.  Yes, the dwarves and Bilbo were in his kingdom, but to my knowledge, Legolas was never referred to.  However, for nostalgia's sake (or the same reason the first Bilbo and Elijah Wood/Frodo had brief cameos in the first Hobbit film), Legolas was written into the movie script.  I can forgive that, because, really, it could/would make sense that he'd be there.  Then, we have an Elvish romance.  But wait, it evolves quickly into a three-way Elf-Elf-Dwarf love triangle.


This all happens, by the way, over the course of a day, maybe?  Before the romance really has a chance to become a problem, Bilbo is stuffing the Dwarves into barrels and sending them off down the river.  Which did happen in the book, but Bilbo managed to seal the barrels properly, so that their journey would be uneventful and safe.  Unlike in the movie, where the barrels were not sealed...and there was a fair goodly amount of splashing going on (but no sinking, mind).  Then, because moviegoers crave action or something, a huge action-packed sequence breaks out in which the Elves learn of the Dwarves' river escape and begin pursuit...but the Dwarves are also being hunted by Orcs...who happen to arrive on the scene at the same time.  You would think: "Hm. Dwarves.  Fish in a barrel.  No weapons, no means to hide."  Wrong.  Lady Luck happens to be on the Dwarves' side as various sticks, rocks, axes, polearms come into their hands at certain opportune moments.  And after 25 minutes of hack-and-slash, the Dwarves make it safely out of the clutches of both Elf and Orc.

I wonder if it's a sad reflection of our society today that we can't have boring, secure river escape sequences...we've got to make them as thrilling and hair-raisingly action-packed as possible.  Seems like everything in movies these days must be so fraught with danger...so close to death.  Ugh.  Seems morbid to me.

I guess I need to go see Anchorman 2 next or something.

1 comment:

  1. Heather,
    Take a rather thin book on which to base not just one, but THREE movies, and this is what tends to happen. Scenes get extended/altered/rewritten. That was a criticism of The Hobbit trilogy even before filming began and I don't believe screening of the movies has altered that impression much. But Peter Jackson is such a hot commodity in Hollywood (and so much revered here in New Zealand) that he can do pretty much anything he wants, up to and including threatening to take the filming of The Hobbit trilogy elsewhere unless the government here rewrote employment law to effectively give Warner Brothers some large tax breaks.