Hobbit The battle of the Five Armies (2014)

Ek tha Hobbit pahad ke andar

That’s what I would have called it.(That’s Hindi for “There was one Hobbit inside the Mountain” – Which is a tribute to the title we came up for the much dubbed and loved Dunston Checks In movie : Ek tha Bandar Hotel ke anadar {There was a monkey inside the hotel}) Why this elaborate explanation and translation?  Well because the movie felt more like something Bollywood would come up with rather than Mr Peter Jackson.

Making three movies from the thin book by Tolkien is like milking a goat to feed a dozen calves. But then you never know who is going to write a series good enough, one with a pre-established audience, so yeah go ahead and make them movies. This picture seems to be a tone more auric than the other films of this or the LOTR series. The story progresses as such but to anyone who has or has not read the book there are moments where gravity and battle physics are defied a tad too much. The first half is slow as compared to the second but there is a decent amount of stuff happening on your screen for you to go to the largest screen in your town to see this flick.

The story follows our merry band of Hobbits as they finally get their treasure and how a Gold rush era disease grips their leader. The much lovable characters of these men of no ordinary stature receive very little attention in this installment. The physical comedy by most of them which made the previous parts enjoyable, is entirely absent. When the holy trinity of Sauraman, Galadriel and Elrond come on screen one is excited but just barely. Why this sudden disillusionment with all things Middle Earth? Because this picture has quite a lot of drama. Moments which are rich in actors on the brim of great emotion without good supporting dialog. Tolkien wrote this primarily as a children’s book and moments where the film’s writer’s have improvised are clear if not palatable.

Visual effects can take you very far and the Peter Jackson franchise is perhaps the best example of what a mix of clever cinematography and the powerful green screen can do. But these remain the garnish, they cannot be the basis of the main dish. This is the first film with the word Hobbit in it which doesn’t come to an abrupt end, yet the feeling of satisfaction I had envisioned after the 144 minutes was like a good plot, absent.

7/10

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