Top Ten Tuesday is a meme by The Broke and the Bookish where fellow book bloggers, and anyone who wants, can contribute to a themed top ten list. This weeks discussion centers around Top Ten Book To Movie Adaptations I’m Looking Forward To or Ten Book To Movie Adaptations I Still Need To Watch. (I’ve not stuck strictly with movie adaptations, sorry.) These are in no particular order, unless you count that they are in the order I thought of them.
2. Mocking Jay Part 2: I love Katniss, and while the movies may not be exactly like the books, I still love them. So very much.
3. Paper Towns by John Green. First I need to read this book and then I can watch the movie. I’ve avoided John Green even though I know he is an excellent writer because I avoid sad endings, and from what I hear that is all his stories. But this trailer entices me to delve into that abyss.
4. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. My husband is not a fan of the adaptation of The Hobbit. And I get it, they added a lot of unnecessary things to make it a three movie money maker, but I still really want to see it.
9. Chaos Walking: The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. Apparently this one has made it to the writing stages. This might be a hard adaptation, considering that the people can hear each others thoughts, but it would be interesting, and I would definitely go and see it.
10. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith. While this was not my favorite adaptation of a classic piece of literature, I do think this will be a fun movie. Also, Matt Smith is in it? Yes please.
I went and saw this movie with a gift certificate from my sister inteded as a birthday present. I was exceptionally grateful because I was unsure if I could afford to go see the movie at the theater otherwise. I saw all of the LOTR movies in the theater and I was eager to continue the tradition. I do think there is something to be said for the large screens capable of portraying Peter Jackson’s vision of Middle Earth. I was not disappointed in this respect, the movie was visually stunning. I was nearly squealing in glee at the prospect and actual immersion into the world of the Hobbiteses and Dwarves. Three hours flew by and only when I stood up and my knee hurt did it sink in that I had been sitting for so long. Because I’m old now.
Bilbo Baggins lives a quiet, peaceful life in his comfortable hole at Bag End. Bilbo lives in a hole because he is a hobbit—one of a race of small, plump people about half the size of humans, with furry toes and a great love of good food and drink. Bilbo is quite content at Bag End, near the bustling hobbit village of Hobbiton, but one day his comfort is shattered by the arrival of the old wizard Gandalf, who persuades Bilbo to set out on an adventure with a group of thirteen militant dwarves. The dwarves are embarking on a great quest to reclaim their treasure from the marauding dragon Smaug, and Bilbo is to act as their “burglar.” The dwarves are very skeptical about Gandalf’s choice for a burglar, and Bilbo is terrified to leave his comfortable life to seek adventure. But Gandalf assures both Bilbo and the dwarves that there is more to the little hobbit than meets the eye. – Sparkle Notes
*This story has been around for literally ages, please don’t expect me to not spoil it. I don’t think you can spoil something that is this old. I think everyone should have at least had the opportunity to read this at some point and so I almost didn’t post a synopsis. However, if telling you where this movie cuts the story into a third is a *SPOILER* then you have been warned. (Honestly how is that a spoiler? Really. I want to know.)
I’ve read The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien at least three times, but the last time I read the book was probably a decade ago, maybe more. However, I did recognize when the narration was word for word (or nearly) from the book, and those parts made me especially happy. I knew going into the theater that Jackson had chosen to use information from The Silmarillion and guessed correctly that it would be back story to the main plot. (I’ve never read, nor had the inclination to read The Silmarillion. I enjoy the magic of the series as written.) So, I wasn’t surprised by the additional parts, but it did slightly take me out of my happy place when my brain tried to match up what I was seeing with what I remembered reading. I quickly set those thoughts aside and settled back into the seat to enjoy myself. There were three major times I had to do this, and it made watching the moving slightly disjointed in a sifting sideways kind of way.
The dwarves were such fun characters in the book and that was definitely brought out in the movie. However, I feel that the movie concentrated on only a few and made some them a little bit gimicky, as they seemed to serve purely as comic relief. So they were quite fun, but sometimes that went a little overboard and made them seem not true to the story. But I loved Armitage’s portrayal of Thorin, he was magnificent, kingly, and very much the leader needed for that motley crew. Martin Freeman as Bilbo was just delightful, and I was expecting much of him. His facial expressions are very telling and even though there were entire scenes were he says very little, he quite stole the show (as he should). His bit with Gollum was exceptional, and I remembered how when reading the the book I was like, and if he had just killed the bugger everything would have been better. (Which really isn’t true, but is how I felt when reading the book). However, with Freeman’s emotive portrayal of the situation stretching across every small fold on his face I realized of course he couldn’t kill Gollum. Which just goes to show how well he played the part, that I let go of otherwise unknown subconscious belief about Bilbo in mere seconds.
The movie was great and wonderful and I thought the timing/pacing was fine. I’ve heard some ramblings about frame rate issues. Not sure what that is about, but I will say that some of the spannings of Middle Earth overwhelmed my eye receptors and caused me to get a small and painful brain ache. In the end my eyes compensated by letting the entire scene go blurry and I had to blink several times to see properly. I discussed this with my friend Keith who says he thinks its because the CG is far too detailed, and if there had been a focal point to follow with the rest blurred, more like what the eye normally does in spanning something, that wouldn’t have happened. The other thing that kept me snickering was remembering my best friend’s review of the movie where she wrote: Hot dwarves. Never thought I’d see them, but I certainly don’t mind being wrong. So, whenever Aidan Turner was on screen I smiled to myself.
After seeing the movie I’m still upset that Jackson felt it OK to wheedle more money out of people by making it three movies. I could have understood, but not been happy, with two movies that included background from The Silmarillion. I have to agree with Alise from Picture Me Reading that the attempt to make it so similar to the LOTR trilogy and spread out the story made it feel like it never really established itself as the excellent tale of danger and friendship and loyalty it is meant to be. Does it do an excellent job of recreating the scenes as they happened in The Hobbit, yes. Is that necessary? I don’t know. I think sometimes when there are more movies or books on the line to come out and make up for the lack of something, people get a little less worried about making something complete in and of itself. While I am looking forward to having several more hours immersed in Middle Earth, I’m not quite sure it makes them good movies just because they contain everything.
Here is HISHE. The song at the end is the best part, so be sure to watch it all the way through!
LionsGate has picked up Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing, a contemporary film noir take on the Bard’s play. Perhaps this means the rest of us, not part of the Indie film festival circuit will be able to see this film. In the mean time, you can read a review of the film here, with some telling tidbits of thecast of characters. After learning who Nathan Fillion plays, I want to see this film so much more!
Jayne’s Vera as a real girl. You can buy prints of her. I wonder how many people will see this and want to cosplay her. If you do, I want pictures. 🙂
Florence + The Machine song to a mash up with deviantArt illustrations. Ahhh, two of my favorite things.
Avenger criticisms with humor. I liked the Avengers, I did, but I have to agree with all of this quibbles. Plus, it’s hilarious. So watch it. [via]
The month of September has been a month of stress. Between doctors visits and interviews I’m pretty much walking around with knots in my neck. Last night it all kind of culminated in a crying jag. OK, not kind of. It did. And then I caught up on the new season of New Girl and I laughed so hard I was holding my rib cage and crying. A show that makes fun of time traveling while making you want to actually believe in time travel and which mentions LotR in conversation is my kind of show. Here’s a bit of it for you to enjoy also. [via]
Andy Serkis reads The Hobbit. Comments not necessary. [via]
Fringe hits the airwaves this Friday. I can. not. wait. BAHHHHHHHH [via]
This awesome photo by Wild Hared Designs of a kid cosplayer as Robin beating up Bane while Batman stands in the background his arms folded over his chest is just too precious for words.
Book vending machines? How cool is that. Now if we would just replace all of our junk vending machines with these book ones in America, maybe half of the country wouldn’t be obese and we would raise our literacy rates. The powers that be are doing a wellness program at my work and everyone is upset that they will have to stand on a scale, have their BMI determined, and figure out a wellness program that works for them. Even though our HIPPA rights are still protected and often accountability breeds results, everyone is upset at The Man for wanting them to get healthier. Personally, I would love if everyone got healthier, perhaps our health insurance rates would decrease if we weren’t paying for procedures that wouldn’t happen if preventative health care (and by that I mean exercising and eating right and getting regular check ups) was practiced by everyone. [via RIASS, the book vending machines, not my rant]
A new trailer for the Hobbit with three new shots. Thanks a lot. Though, when I heard The Hobbit would be three films, I wasn’t all that excited for it any more. But honestly, if the world ends the day after my birthday, and I’m sitting in a movie theater watching J.R.R. Tolkien come to life, in whatever form, I will be fine with that. Actually, I just love rewatching this, so pooh pooh on the poohpoohers. ALSO I NEED TO REREAD THE HOBBIT NOW!!! [via Topless Robot]
Though Matt Rhodes has an excellent point when he says: Wizards, if they were real, would be the worst people. Dabbling in all sorts of grim abominations for dubious ends. They’d be the last people you’d ever hire for a quest, and then only in utter desperation.
We are NOT taking the wizard. by MattRhodes.deviantart.com
Supposedly there are some “found” illustrations of Tolkein for The Hobbit. Though I’ve been told by one person that they’ve seen them already. 😛 So, you may or may not have seen these recently “found” illustrations. Either way, they are still cool. So there, Sara. [via The Mary Sue]
Also check out this sweet video of Elijah Wood, Sean Astin, Billy Boyd and Dominic Monaghan as part of their interview bit with Empire Magazine. Unfortunately I can’t embedded it in WordPress but go here to check it out.