Friday, December 26, 2014

You Won't Be Needing Those Childhood Memories!

Being enough of a Tolkien fan to have written a few blog posts about the good professor's work, I have assiduously avoided seeing any of Peter Jackson's "Hobbit" films. To quote the blurb from the back of the parody Bored of the Rings (which I love, not being a rabid fanboy):


"Those who have any respect for a certain living author won't touch this turkey with a ten-foot battle lance"


Yeah, no "Hobbit" movies for this guy... I didn't particularly care for Jackson's "Lord of the Rings" movies to begin with, and I viewed Jackson's expansion of a relatively slim novel to three films a crass pass for the brass. Regarding the movies, I'd heard some tidbits which convinced me that I was right to avoid these movies. The first movie had too many "roller coaster" type scenes, probably setting up action sequences for video game adaptations. The second movie had a character added to the story which looked suspiciously like a Mary Sue (She's an orphan! She rose quickly from a common birth to a lofty position! She's even a redhead!!!). I am certainly not complaining about the addition of a female character to the movie, but I think that several of the dwarfs should have been female... Melissa McCarthy as Bombur FTW!!! The problem with the "hawt elf chick" insert is Hollywood's insistence that every female character be a Daphne, with nary a Velma onscreen. The third movie was seen as soulless. I didn't watch any of these movies, so why am I writing about them? I don't do the guest-post thing, but I am going to bring in a special guest-star for this post, a friend and co-worker who is a devout Tolkien fan. I warned her that she would hate the movie, but she went ahead and saw it anyway. She sent me a text-message to wish me a merry Christmas, and I asked her the fateful question:


You see that hobbit movie yet?

Oh... worse than you can imagine. I died a little inside

Give it enough time and you'll come to hate Jacko's LotR movies too. I think he just wanted to make a big budget remake of "Hawk the Slayer"

I don't hate him. Just really disappointed. To be fair, I didn't have high hopes for this one.

Just think of the movies as a big budget "Hawk the Slayer" remake and you won't be so disappointed. The end of "Hawk" did leave room for a sequel.

Lol I'm currently watching the "Die Hard" movies in between cooking

Did Jacko at least include Thorin's dying speech to Bilbo? The "child of the kindly west" speech?

Not all of it but most of it. Thorin dies not on the battlefield, but on the mountain fighting Azog. Two words: war pigs

Peter Jackson can eat a bag of dicks. I can't wait until the novelization of the movie comes out, written by that Salvatore guy. Why couldn't Jackson just call his movie "Warhammer: Dwarfs vs Orcs" and leave the beloved children's classic alone?

True! *twitches at the mention of Warhammer* I'm a Warhammer widow ya know. My house has little painted men EVERYWHERE


Anyway, Peter Jackson's not going to poop on my childhood memories of the beloved classic (hell, did his movies even give the eponymous hobbit more than a few scant minutes of screentime?). No need for me to watch his three-course serving of pure CGI cheese. It seems that even my spoofy Ayn Rand/Hobbit mashup was more faithful to the books than these movies.

That being said, I'd watch the hell out of Peter Jackson's big-budget sequel to Hawk the Slayer, and he can add all the "Mary Sue" characters he wants!

7 comments:

Helmut Monotreme said...

Sheesh. Leave Warhammer out of it. (yes in my misspent youth I misspent a fair amount of time and money on tiny little army dudes and overpriced paint and successive editions of bewildering and contradictory rules)All it claims to be is an excuse to play with army men and as a common framework to begin arguments about who killed who. There are no pretensions to literary merit, plausibility, or affordability. In fact if the movies were about the Warhammer universe, nobody would have a had a word of criticism for the liberties taken with the already self contradictory 'lore', because no one understands it in the first place. Warhammer is high fantasy interpreted through some kind of dadaist rejection of narrative, which would be perfect for Peter Jackson.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

But Jackson did at least bring some money to the New Zed economy...didn't he?
~

experientialpagan said...

I didn't particularly mind Jackson's LOR adaptation, it wasn't the worst ever book to movie. (I couldn't even consider Susan Cooper's "Dark is Rising" abortion that ended up being cut to ribbons for "pagan content" and re-named "The Seeker" -- I would have bent knee and PRAYED for Jackson to rescue THAT!) I saw the first Hobbit installment, where I was shocked to learn that he WAS breaking it into three and it pissed me off pretty thoroughly. If he wants something worthy of length? Why the hell use The Hobbit -- which was, for me, the least charming volume. If he wants to delve, all beardy dwarf-like? Let him tackle The Silmarrillion!

mikey said...

Meh. I read the Hobbit like everyone else when I was 12 or so. It just didn't have the kind of profound effect on me that Dune, Time Enough for Love or The Eiger Sanction did. So I probably wouldn't notice that they'd fucked it up, but I'm just not interested enough to bother downloading the torrent.

Smut Clyde said...

The first movie had too many "roller coaster" type scenes, probably setting up action sequences for video game adaptations.

I remember making an identical observation except about movie #2.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Sheesh. Leave Warhammer out of it.

I'm not knocking it. I never played it, but the gonzo aesthetic was an interesting jolt of adrenaline into the usual fantasy tropes. I bought the FRP book because it had a cover by John Sibbick, one of my all-time favorite paleo-artists.

But Jackson did at least bring some money to the New Zed economy...didn't he?

I credit AK and Smut for that.

(I couldn't even consider Susan Cooper's "Dark is Rising" abortion that ended up being cut to ribbons for "pagan content" and re-named "The Seeker" -- I would have bent knee and PRAYED for Jackson to rescue THAT!)

That sounds horrible- the whole "Wild Hunt" thing being central to the book. I finally finished the series a couple of years ago and I was really steamed by the whole "everybody forgets everything supernatural" bit. I thought it was unfair to her mortal protagonists.

It just didn't have the kind of profound effect on me that Dune, Time Enough for Love or The Eiger Sanction did.

I read The Eiger Sanction on the plane to Switzerland- within a week, I was looking at the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau- my mom's mom's dad was from that part of the world.

I remember making an identical observation except about movie #2.

I wonder if Merchant-Ivory every directed a movie with an eye to a video game adaptation. A Room with a View as a FPS?

M. Bouffant said...

A cable net ran all three of the Lawd of the Rings flix a few Suns. ago, & I recorded & then binge-watched all three.

Man. Whatta load of Hollywood "trust me" "don't give up" "have faith" tripe most of the character interaction was reduced to. Not that I remember if any of it in the books was tolerable ...