The Battle of Five Armies

Just returned from taking da goils to see the third installment of the extended film that that the lovely Mrs. Robb refers to as "That Middle-Earth Movie".

Overall, I thought it was the second best in the series - not nearly as good as the first installment, but much better than the second.  I have a new love for Dain of the Iron Hills, and a newfound respect for Galadriel, who shows that she can indeed be as "beautiful and terrible as the Morn!".  The scenes of the dwarven infantry also warmed my heart.  Dwarven shield walls?  Yes, please!

I will also admit to blubbering like a kid when Thorin died. [1] 

What can I say?  I love me some dwarves.

There were a number of ways that the movie could have been improved.  Cutting out the extended "amazing action" sequences, for example.  A couple of quick scenes of awesomeness would have worked much better, IMHO.  John C. Wright will be happy to know that there was at least one point where I was thinking "SHOOT HIM WITH AN ELF ARROW!" - and, wouldn't you know it, he did.  Ah, some common sense at last!

More exposition about how Beorn and the Eagles show up to save the day would have been nice as well.  As, maybe, a mention of why it was the "battle of five armies"?  Just sayin'.  I am eagerly anticipating the director's cut (or, more likely, the fan cut) that turns this movie trilogy into the the two movies that it should have been from the beginning.

Finally, I was surprised to find myself thinking that the love interest between Kili and Tauriel actually worked fairly well, in the context of the movie.  No, it's not canonical... but it was a side plot, not a major part of the film; and it provided some context for character development that was otherwise quite logically lacking in a movie about Guys Hitting Other Guys With Pointy Bits of Metal.

If you've seen the first two, you will definitely want to see the third, if just to come to a sense of closure.  If you're like the lovely Mrs. Robb, though, and think that Elves showing up at Helm's Deep was a grave error, then you'll probably be happiest either catching it as a matinee showing, or waiting to see it on DVD.

[1] Spoilers?  For one of the modern classics of Western literature?  Are you serious?

No comments: