My The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug dvd (poster from Sir PJ’s FB page) came in the mail yesterday/Tuesday. Yay!!!
So I had a “hot date” with a Dwarf King and a Dragon last night! It is so much fun to see two guys try to outdo each other in the smoulder department. In my view, Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield won. *wink* Sighhhhh! You see, although Benedict Cumberpatch did a great job voicing Smaug, Smaug just doesn’t set my heart aflutter–something about the possibility of dragon snores setting the house ablaze comes to mind. Whereas Thorin would be nice to snuggle with–that is if I weren’t already very happily married. Darn it!
With Thorin–apart from the handsome King Under the Mountain who is just my size at 5ft 2.5 inches (well within non-straining kissing range)–I feel his pain. The loss of his family, the loss of his home, the loss of his heritage, and the loss of what had been a brightly destined future make Thorin Oakenshield a truly heroic tragic figure in my view. And the fact that Thorin is flawed–in his greed, in his persistence on his quest, and in being suspicious of Bilbo (rightly so as it turns out)–makes him seem more real. And aren’t women sometimes drawn to men who are projects? So handsome! (image from NZ Stamp Presentation Pack, courtesy of the Love,Sex, & Dirty Words blog)
Richard Armitage portrays Thorin Oakenshield commandingly, bitterly, pridefully, seeming physically massive despite being shorter in stature than Elves and Men, arrogantly, recklessly, and yes, majestically. He is the King of the Dwarfs–not by mere accident of birth and lineage, but by deeds. He will lead his people to “reclaim our homeland”.
And Richard Armitage’s Thorin Oakenshield is a very subtle character performance–the determined gaze, the silence when words are not necessary, the whispered grittiness of “I have the only right” (my cap from trailer 1, right) when others might have shouted, and the bravery and courage to challenge a fire breathing dragon because Thorin has nothing else to lose. I know, the third film will explore loss in profoundly poignant ways. But let’s not go there yet.
And the THDofS film really was a roller coaster adventure ride–from the Orcs chasing the Dwarves relentlessly throughout the film, to the barrel scenes, all of the fight scenes (I had to close my eyes a few times because they were scary, Ha!), and the character building scenes (including with some of the secondary characters):
1) For the record, I love Tauriel! And I am so glad that she was inserted into this film
(poster from Sir PJ’s FB page). She is the Elves’ conscience–“This is our fight”, said to Orlando Bloom as Legolas. Tauriel is also a bridge to greater understanding between the peoples of Middle Earth as she gets to know Kili and later save his life. Evangeline Lilly portrayed her beautifully.
2) And conversely, I despised the ruthless Elven King Thranduil (poster from Sir PJ’s FB page), portrayed with wicked silver lame abandon by Lee Pace. Thranduil’s smarmy condescending “I will help you” left no one in doubt that goldilocks couldn’t be trusted. I joked on Twitter that if anyone were to take away Thranduil’s hair conditioner, that they could really bring Thranduil to his knees with all of the tangles that he would have. Ha!
3) I especially adored the secondary character of Balin, portrayed solidly by Ken Stott. Balin is Thorin’s touchstone to the past–and also Thorin’s conscience, “His name is Bilbo” is said with a grandfatherly chastising tone. But each of the Dwarves had their moments in the film.
4) And my goodness Martin Freeman’s Bilbo (above) has turned into quite the little fighter–dispatching those CGI Mirkwood spiders with alacrity. We also begin to see signs that the ring’s hold on Bilbo is starting to shred his self control–especially when one of the spiders got too close to the dropped ring.
5) And for Sir Ian McKellen’s character of Gandalf the Gray (poster from Sir PJ’s FB page), I very much liked his Prancing Pony scene with Richard Armitage as Thorin. You could see behind his eyes that Gandalf was beginning to arrange a very elaborate chess board. Though later on in the film, Gandalf leaves the Dwarves to their own devices by him going off on a side quest. And what does it get him? Put in a cage.
This was only the second time that I had seen The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug–the first time was in 3D HFR in our local movie theatre. I somehow hung on and waited until my dvd arrived to see it again–so I wouldn’t miss an instant of the film. Love the pause feature. But I’m sure that I’ll watch the film again soon–next time with popcorn. Ha!
P.S. Silly me! I should have added a video for you to enjoy. Here is the THDOS Official Main Trailer from Warner Bros. Pictures: