The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

January 21, 2015

Hey everyone!  I’m still working through where I want to go with this blog (especially considering that the title is no longer accurate!) but I reeeeally needed to write something and I know this is way late but lolol cultural relevancy what r u even so here’s my letter to Peter Jackson about this movie

Dammit, Peter Jackson, I trusted you.

Your work with Lord of the Rings is exceptional, and while you clearly knew what you were doing with that, I was skeptical when I heard that you made The Hobbit into three movies, because I didn’t believe there was enough material there.  After seeing the first movie, I was convinced I was correct in my belief, but you changed my mind significantly with the second.  I LIKED the second.  The expansions you made to the plot were overall pretty great (hey there, Legolas!), Smaug looked wonderful, and I really felt involved in the story.  I was super psyched to see the third one, even though I knew it was going to make me sad.

Then I went to see the third one.  GodDAMMIT, Peter.

Okay, there were some things that were genuinely quite lovely.  Lee Pace’s eyebrows, for example.  The dwarves riding in on pigs, because PIGGIES!  And, um…yeah, mostly Lee Pace.  Face, hair, general demeanor.  Actual elvish perfection in every way.  Fine, okay, yes, Thorin’s death was incredibly well-shot and Martin Freeman’s acting in the scene made me cry, but just because you can shoot a death scene does not let you off the goddamn hook, Mr. Jackson.  Also using Billy Boyd’s angel voice for the credits? My individual tears are crying, you jerk.

I knew there wasn’t a whole lot left in the Smaug plotline from the book, but seriously dude? I know Benedict was probably pretty pricey, but you could literally have walked up to the CGI team and been like “we need to have a man drop from the sky and transform into a bear on the way down and then land into a battle and fuck shit up” and they would have done it for you (….OH WAIT YOU DID THAT HI BEORN HOPE YOU ENJOYED YOUR CAMEO) so we couldn’t have had like, a bit more dragon?  Or some of the Necromancer that wasn’t just a strobe light and the Minas Morgul track from RotK?  And I get that Smaug’s death is the ultimate in one-in-a-million shots but did we have to William Tell it up with Bard’s kid?  Come on, bro.  It’s a KID.  We’re gonna worry about the kid already, and then you gotta mount the freaking arrow of doom up on his shoulder?  Kid, I don’t know your name, but whatever you got paid for this movie, it wasn’t nearly enough.

And Alfrid.  What the HELL was up with Alfrid, bro?  Did you give him and his unibrow individual contracts?  Is that why we spent so much time filming him?  And come on, man, no one read the script and was like “hey, this guy seems like an AlphaDouche, mayyyybe we shouldn’t leave him in charge of everything?”  Peter, come on, I realize you’re going for comic relief, but letting Bard pick him out of everyone else to keep watch and then WHOOPSIES not noticing every elf in Mirkwood is on your front steps areyoukiddingme. People of Lake-town and Dale: I know you’ve got a gigantic leadership broner for Bard right now but his powers of delegation are CLEARLY lacking and perhaps you should place someone else (anyone else?) in charge. Like Thranduil’s elk.  Next time, Peter? More elk less Alfrid.

I was already super skeptical of Tauriel’s plotline and general existence, and you went right ahead and proved my skepticism to be correct on literally every goddamn count.  I would like whoever decided “why does it hurt so much? Because it was real” was an actual line that should be actually spoken and actually placed into the film to be publicly shamed.  I would like you to tell me why we are so scared of giving women anything other than bows and short knives to fight that isn’t “barely concealed phallic imagery when in the hands of women makes us uncomfortable so only boyz get the long sharp thingz kayyy.” I would like you to offer a public apology to Fili, who has to be extraordinarily pissed off that his death was nothing more than a vehicle for the Dashboard Confessional, Romeo-and-Juliet, this-isn’t-your-ordinary-love-story love story garbage, especially since his beard is CLEARLY THE SUPERIOR ONE.

And the White Council, Peter? Can we talk about that for a second?  You gave them like two minutes of screentime after plastering Christopher Lee’s face all over every promotional material that was made and it turned into The Expendables 19.  How exactly did you explain this when you pitched the scene? SARUMAN. ELROND. GALADRIEL. GANDALF. They all reunite in a battle for the ages against the forces of evil that is given zero explanation and even less time and you kind of feel like Liam Neeson is gonna show up and shoot someone because everything old is there.  Mr. Jackson, you gave us a Legolas backstory that is not canon nor was it relevant but we couldn’t scrape together another couple thousand to keep the old guard on set for like, 10 more minutes?  If you’re going to make this scene, make this scene, sir!  Don’t throw McKellen and Blanchett around with some *~*cRAzY sAuROn’S eYe*~* graphics and then allow several thousand years of experience to arrive on-set looking like it’s pissed that somewhere in the future, Aragorn is getting some and it’s his daughter.  MAKE THE EFFORT.

[Also if you listen carefully somewhere off in the distance Celeborn is screaming “I AM RELEVANT AND I MATTER AND I WILL NOT BE IGNORED”]

And Thorin, man? Come ON.  We’ve got the greatest vaguely dirty majestic face since Viggo and we go and give him draaaaaagon sicknesssss and some grandstanding?  Richard Armitage, who thought out his on-screen character enough to justify why he doesn’t have the long beard Tolkien wrote him with, was given about a hundred variations of “I’m really high and would kill for a burrito right now” except the burrito was the Arkenstone and you were somehow okay with this.  I realize it had been a long time in the movies since anyone had worn the One Ring and you were annoyed that you couldn’t put weird-ass effects but the gold thing really COME ON.  And while I will give you credit for his actual death scene with Bilbo, the fight was ridiculous and you know it.  Ice! Snow! Extra weapons! Uncertain kill shot! Slidey around on this iceberg wheeee! This is a dwarf king, a ridiculously talented beast-with-a-beard and you’re going to let him get Oberyn’d because we didn’t have nearly enough jumpshots and it’s fun to stab people through the foot.  Seriously just give Legolas like 18 more trick shots and call it a day because you need to stop, sir.

Just…dammit, man.  You won ten years ago.  This was a kids’ book.  I trusted you, man, and you let me down.

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