Reviews

The Hobbit: The battles of the five armies- A grand finale

Lee Pace, left, as Thranduil and Ian McKellen as Gandalf in “The Hobbit : The Battle of the Five Armies.”

Lee Pace, left, as Thranduil and Ian McKellen as Gandalf in “The Hobbit : The Battle of the Five Armies.”  



Genre: Fantasy/Adventure

Director: Peter Jackson

Cast: Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Luke Evans, Lee Pace, Cate Blanchett

In this final outing of Hobbit in the murky terrain, inhabited with quirky characters, Peter Jackson, without wasting any time, takes us straight into action with Smaug, the dragon, showering its fury on the Laketown before being silenced by the arrow of bowman Bard (Luke Evans). What follows though is a grind as Jackson resorts to overt sermonising. The inherent humour and wit that has been the characteristic of Hobbit franchise is sorely missing here because Hobbit himself is marginalised here for a large part.

As expected Thorin (Richard Armitage) falls in love with the treasure that the dragon leaves behind. As the greed creeps in, the king of dwarves goes back on his word and the war clouds start gathering all over again with the Elves asking for their share. Bard and his men also join elf prince (Lee Pace) after he fails to make Thorin see reason. It is left to the good old Gandalf (Ian Mckellen) and the well meaning Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) to bring Thorin back from the brink for the real enemies are the barbarian Orcs, carrying out the wish of their dark lord Sauron.

By the third instalment, the emotional tapestry of the JRR Tolkien’s narrative has been stretched beyond its potential and it is very hard to get drawn into the thought behind the conflict. It is as specious as the cosmetic snout of many of the characters. What remains intact though is Jackson’s ability to mount massive battle scenes and the detailing that they demand. The conflict has begun to look cosmetic but his imagery still creates the awe-inspiring scenery.

Darker and more sinister than previous editions, the footage of elves, dwarves, orcs and many other creatures of different shapes and size using hammers and boulders to silence each other with evil bats in the sky and bizarre earthworms undulating on land, the childhood fantasies in you blossom all over again. Jackson brings the adventurous side of cinema to life and here he signs off with a blast.

This article has been corrected.

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Printable version | Aug 4, 2020 4:48:14 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/cinema/cinema-reviews/the-hobbit-the-battles-of-the-five-armies-a-grand-finale/article6686044.ece

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