By Frank and Kay Whatley
For this issue, we reviewed The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. This film is the first of three films retelling the story of Bilbo Baggins. The films follow the story line of J.R.R. Tolkien’s 1937 children’s novel, The Hobbit, or There and Back Again.
This first film in the Hobbit trilogy begins where the book begins: “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.” The first part of the movie takes place at the home of Bilbo Baggins, Bag End in The Shire.
Tolkien’s book includes many songs woven in with the adventures. Likewise, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey includes singing of songs.
At almost 3 hours in length, the film is full of many action scenes. Fast and furious action is mixed with intriguing scenes like the one between Bilbo and Gollum. There are violent battle scenes in line with what was seen in the Lord of the Rings trilogy of movies. Use those films as a guide when deciding whether to take your children to see The Hobbit.
Despite this film being created from a book separate from the Lord of The Rings book series, Director Jackson has used the same look and feel (and many of the same actors) as were used in the Lord of The Rings movies. Mr. Bilbo Baggins, as played by actor Martin Freeman, is endearing, much like the character as written in Tolkien’s book. Several scenes seem to be included to tie into Jackson’s other movies, for which The Hobbit is a prequel.
With a 3D version available, and Director Peter Jackson using an unheard of 48 frames per second film speed, this first part of Bilbo’s story can be quite a viewing experience, as well as a great adventure story.