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Annlyel explores the character development of Legolas between the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit Trilogy
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My last post evaluating my opinion on The Hobbit trilogy focused on the negatives that helped bring the films’ standard down quite a few pegs. But, there is an endearing quality to the movies that keeps me coming back to watch them and I’m going to tell you why. Here are the pros of The Hobbit trilogy.
One of the things I was most skeptical about when I heard there was going to be a Hobbit film was whether they would cast a good young Bilbo. When I first saw Martin Freeman as the character I wasn’t totally convinced and his performance in An Unexpected Journey was…so-so. It wasn’t until The Desolation of Smaug that he seemed to really get comfortable with the character and I was flabbergasted by his performance. It felt as if Bilbo Baggins had stepped out of the book and into the movie. That’s how great of a job he did.
While the films may have had their faults Bilbo Baggins, the main character of the trilogy, keeps me invested in the movies because of his lovable personality and Freeman’s incredible portrayal of the adventurous hobbit.
Oh, who doesn’t love elves? They always have the most beautiful places (plus the coolest armor and weapons) and the same can be said about The Hobbit trilogy. One of the reasons why The Desolation of Smaug is my favorite installment in the trilogy is because it was the first Hobbit film to establish major elven characters; Legolas, Tauriel, and King Thranduil. Having Legolas in the movies not only made sense (because he’s a Mirkwood elf) but accelerated the quality of the films tenfold. Legolas is my favorite character in The Lord of the Rings so imagine my glee when I saw him in the first trailer for The Desolation of Smaug. I could barely contain my excitement.
And he was so much more awesome in these movies because he was given a larger role. We got to see the elven prince in his element leading his fellow elven warriors against the evil orcs and interacting with his dear friend, Tauriel. He was definitely one of the highlights of the films for me.
Tauriel also blew my mind with her originality and her awesome presence. Except for Eowyn in The Lord of the Rings women (especially the elven women) were never given much to do but she was an exception. She was a warrior and who doesn’t love seeing a woman who can kick butt?
I also love that she was the first elf I had ever seen with red hair. In The Lord of the Rings we only saw elves with dark or blond hair so imagine how intrigued I was when she appeared sporting this long, auburn hair. It was 100% awesome and I was an immediate fan. And now Evangeline Lilly has been cast as The Wasp in the MCU. I couldn’t be happier. And the gorgeous King Thranduil is simply magnificent with his crown of leaves and those piercing blue eyes. He seems lethal yet reserved, fierce yet kind, but more importantly, he is a king and he proves time and time again why that is so.
Thranduil was extraordinary in the novel and he’s even cooler in the movie.
(I love elves.)
Charming, heroic, benevolent, those are the endearing qualities of a hero and Bard has all of those. I love Bard. I’ve loved him since he first appeared in The Desolation of Smaug. Peter Jackson took this heroic character from the novel, spruced him up a bit in the script, and with Luke Evans’s impeccable portrayal of Bard it was a win-win situation.
Bard was another one of those characters that I felt was so much better in the movie than the book. He shined when the movie was sometimes grey and the simple fact that he killed the dragon, Smaug, is beyond a legendary achievement.
The Sauron Connections
While the adventures of The Hobbit may have been 60 years before the events of The Lord of the Rings it didn’t mean that Sauron wasn’t stirring the pot of his return and these three prequel movies say as much.
Undoubtedly the highlight of The Battle of the Five Armies was when Galadriel, Elrond, and Saruman took on the Nazgul and Sauron in an epic fight worthy of the ages. Not only was it awe-inducing but it also revealed just how powerful Galadriel is as she banished the dark lord back to Mordor. That is easily one of the most incredible moments in the Middle-Earth movies.
And finally, Smaug. Oh my goodness, Smaug is undoubtedly the greatest dragon to ever be in cinema. I didn’t know how they could make Smaug talk and it not seem corny but Benedict Cumberbatch knocked it out of the park. He was so scary and intimidating that I remember watching the film in IMAX and feeling as small as Bilbo Baggins.
I went to see The Desolation of Smaug twice in the movie theaters just so I could experience the sheer awesomeness of Smaug again. After this film, I immediately became a Benedict Cumberbatch because of his outstanding performance. And honestly, I don’t think there will be a better dragon than him for a long while.
So, these are the things that I love about The Hobbit trilogy. While the films clearly aren’t the best in the world and could’ve easily been better it has certain memorable qualities that made me a proud owner of these movies. And so, I thank Peter Jackson for his incredible work on bringing such a fascinating story to life, for now, I truly know the adventures of Bilbo Baggins and that is a dream come true.
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