Judging part one of Peter Jackson's 'The Lord of the Rings' prelude 'The Hobbit' is a bit like reviewing a film after seeing only the first act.
Yet here goes: 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' is stuffed with Hollywood's latest technology - 3D, high-speed projection and Dolby's Atmos surround sound system. The result is some eye candy that truly dazzles and some that utterly distracts, at least in its test-run of 48 frames a second, double the projection rate that has been standard since silent-film days.
It's also overstuffed with, well, stuff. Prologues and sidestepping backstory. Long, boring councils among dwarves, wizards and elves. A shallow blood feud extrapolated from sketchy appendices to JRR Tolkien's 'The Lord of the Rings' to give the film a bad guy.
Remember the interminable false endings of 'The Return of the King,' the Academy Award-winning finale of Jackson's 'Lord of the Rings'? 'An Unexpected Journey' has a similar bloat throughout its nearly three hours, in which Tolkien's brisk story of intrepid little hobbit Bilbo Baggins is drawn out and diluted by dispensable trimmings better left for DVD extras....more
03:36 PM, Dec 05, 2012