I’ll preface this review by saying that I am a long time fan of J.R.R. Tolkien’s work, from when I was a small tyke trudging through his LOTR books and hardly comprehending a word of it. Therefore, my review is horrendously biased, but I will do everything in my power to give credence to both the strong and weak sections of the movie.
Critique: Lets start with the *SPOILER ALERT* white orc. This character doesn’t exist in the original novel, but he is understandable addition to drive a single novel into a movie trilogy. Turns out viewers like bad guys. Whoddathunkit. The problem lies in his animation. While in “The Two Towers” the orc leaders were horrific in all of their humanness and makeup, the change to a CGI bad guy turns the movie more into a clip from World of Warcraft than it does a rendition of a Tolkien classic.
Commendation: Glad I got that out of the way. Now onto the good parts. I can honestly say that this is the first novel to have more content than the book. Let me repeat: MORE content. We see a bit more development of the dwarves, what it must like to be of a people without a place in the world to rest. While the movie didn’t end at that important of a point in the book, the writers managed to turn it into a pleasing emotional catharsis where Bilbo is accepted as a member of this homeless gang. Tears may have been shed.
I give this movie 3 out of 3 hobbits standing on each others shoulders. In other words, 1 out of 1 Butler basketball player. In other words, go see it!