Film Review: THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY

A stunning looking film with extraordinary digital 3D and lots of blokey action ...Naomi

CATE BLANCHETT as Galadriel, CHRISTOPHER LEE as Saruman and HUGO WEAVING as Elrond in the fantasy adventure "THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY," a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), released by Warner Bros. Pictures and MGM. Photo COURTESY OF WARNER BROS. PICTURES

WHAT'S IT ABOUT?

Peter Jackson's film "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" is the first of two films being adapted from J.R.R. Tolkien's book "The Hobbit". Both films are set in Middle-earth 60 years before "The Lord of the Rings" and follows Bilbo Baggins, who joins a company of thirteen dwarves led by the legendary warrior, Thorin Oakenshieldis, on an epic quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor from the fearsome dragon Smaug.

Their journey takes them through treacherous lands swarming with strange and mystical creatures, and it's eerie to see where Bilbo first meets Gollum and discovers his "precious" ring.

HUGO WEAVING as Elrond in New Line Cinema's and MGM's fantasy adventure "THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. Photo by TODD EYRE

WILLIAM KIRCHER as Bifur, GRAHAM McTAVISH as Dwalin, MARTIN FREEMAN as Bilbo Baggins, JAMES NESBITT as Bofur and JOHN CALLEN as Oin in the fantasy adventure "THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY," a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), released by Warner Bros. Pictures and MGM. Photo by JAMES FISHER

A GREAT CAST...

Martin Freeman is compelling playing the central role of a young Bilbo Baggins plus Ian McKellen returns as Gandalf the Grey, Cate Blanchett as Galadriel, Ian Holm as the elder Bilbo, Christopher Lee as Saruman, Hugo Weaving as Elrond and Andy Serkis as Gollum and many, many, many more.

CATE BLANCHETT as Galadriel and IAN McKELLEN as Gandalf in the fantasy adventure "THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY," a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), released by Warner Bros. Pictures and MGM. Photo COURTESY OF WARNER BROS. PICTURES

MY THOUGHTS...

I'm a huge fan of Hugo Weaving, Cate Blanchett and the director of photography Andrew Lesnie, so I was blessed to be one of the first in Australia to see "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" during Christmas madness in Sydney.

The 3D was amazing and strange at the same time, a real movie experience. The imagery, make-up and costumes are stunning as expected and I doubt that fans of the previous films and books will be disappointed, especially if you like long fight scenes.

I found the movie entertaining and clever, although a bit long and Cate Blanchett seems to be one of two women I noticed in the entire film. I'm pretty sure I'm not the target audience. I do love fantasy, myth and science fiction amongst many other genre's, but it's always the story that compels me - I usually close my eyes during extended fight scenes in 3D. Sure there is more dough to be made by extending the book over two films, but it might be a more riveting story if it was condensed into one.

Lately, I have been wondering what Stephen Donaldson's "Thomas Covenant Chronicles" would be like as a trilogy of films, maybe with Jim Caviezel, Hugh Jackman or Rufus Sewell in the lead. If it is ever made, I hope Stephen Donaldson is included in the script writing... Just imagine!

CATE BLANCHETT as Galadriel and IAN McKELLEN as Gandalf in New Line Cinema's and MGM's fantasy adventure "THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. Photo COURTESY OF WARNER BROS. PICTURES