Tag Archives: The Battle Of The Five Armies

“If it had been in the movie it would have been… it would have…

“If it had been in the movie it would have been… it would have been quite a nice shot.” – Alan Lee

With the home-entertainment release theatrical edition of The Battle of the Five Armies impending, I am finding myself wondering if we’re gonna get DOS’ed again with an extended edition with NO additional scenes featuring the Elves.

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Battle of the Five Armies Just Has No Story

lawyernovelist:

I was going to do this as part of a general overview post, but then it got long. The basic problem, though, is that Battle of the Five Armies suffered from a complete lack of storytelling.

This wasn’t a story. This was a series of events arranged in chronological order. Nothing really built, there was no arc for any of the characters, and most of it was pointless.

Cut for spoilers for The Hobbit (book and movies) and some mild spoilers for Lord of the Rings (books and movies).

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Stumbled on this. Quite glad even though it’s long and actually is even longer, considering all the long sub-posts it links to. Because while I have neither energy nor time to go into detail about what my problems with botfa are and how I feel it, and the series, could be better, vicariously living the postulations is much needed therapy I didn’t know I need. Especially when the responses I got on a forum where I shared my thoughts tended towards vocal supporters determined to justify the problems I see with the movies (I wasn’t convinced by any shot), or had issues but were not expressed well or countered thoughtfully, this is an interesting find.

There is discussion on all the major characters, their characterisations and arcs. Bonus; the book is held up for reference too.

I am in total agreement with the premise the movie is basically a moving sequence of events. To me, it’s reminiscent of a quest game – hit certain marks in a certain order and score! Turn it on, finish it or don’t. Restart it, or give it up. It doesn’t matter. My problem is I WANT IT TO, DAMMIT!

I’ve said and expressed my piece, quite a few times, as recently as this morning but it bears saying again, so here goes.

This trilogy is based on a book, lovingly crafted with attention to details, but it is not quite with the book. It is a mass-market movie but strangely finely-tuned with rather significant nods and easter-eggs that fly right over the mass market audience.

The open secret is that knowledge of the book, and associated publications that is not going to be read by the average mass-market audience turns out to be at least beneficial to understanding the unexplained stuff in the movie. This in turn frustrates, if not infuriate, the reader, because it is replete with obtuse story-telling, unfathomable creative choices and hanging plotgaps for which resolution MIGHT BE delivered in the extended edition… which leaves the larger population of the mass-market theatrical release… where?

I’m not done with all the related posts on this post, and I’m sure I’m not going to be shouting “Aye!” at every point in every one of them, but based on what I’ve read so far, I have to encourage people with hobbit/botfa issues to try them on for size, just on principle.

And conversely, I dare people who love and support the divisive hobbit/botfa stuff (you know of what/who I speak) to have a look, and not develop a shred of agreement at all.

I’m disappointed with a lot in the movies, but there are still things I like. And I am still hanging on to the one saving grace, to my mind, that this trilogy is not what Episodes I, II, III are to the Star Wars franchise. At least so far. But I am not going to let that stop me from finishing this excellent series of critiques by lawyernovelist.

Battle of the Five Armies Just Has No Story

wolfanitas-art:I loved the first two thirds of BotFA. Everything…

wolfanitas-art:

I loved the first two thirds of BotFA. Everything I didn’t like about the last third, Gandalf was so kind to summarise for me.

Word!

More expression of my grumps with the movies cos I want so much to like it all but just.can’t! Because it was real tough to buy it, hook, line and sinker, and not ask any questions.

wolfanitas-art:I loved the first two thirds of BotFA. Everything…

Movie-verse: Thranduil and Legolas’ relationship

myrkvidrs:

I’ve always been very much on the side of “Thranduil and Legolas had a good relationship” when it comes to their history together, especially given Galadriel’s statement of how Legolas grew up in joy (admittedly that wasn’t in the movies, tho) and, while watching the movies, I was initially wary of how things were portrayed, the closer I looked, the more I’m still firmly on the side of, “Yeah, that little elfling was totally doted on.”

(This is helped by the actors confirming that father and son love each other incredibly deeply, as well as Phillipa Boyen confirmed that, yeah, of course they reconcile between The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings.)

My view on this largely comes from the way they react to each other, even when there’s doubt and hurt and strife there.  I mean, this is not the face of an elf who was not encouraged to speak his mind:
image
image

No, I’m pretty sure that’s an elf who was brought up to ask questions, to say his thoughts, to have strong convictions.  (As well as maybe being a little spoiled, because—well, I’ll get into that.)  As well as, when you look at the way Thranduil reacts to Legolas, there is no point at which Thranduil is cruel to him or yells at him or expresses anger towards him, even when he would be justified in doing so.  There’s never any, “You sit back down, shut up, and mind your place.”

When Legolas says harsh words to his father, the reaction is instead:
image

So, I’m going to look at their scenes across the movies and see just what kind of dynamic they really do have.  This is entirely movie-based (as it would have to be, of course), so I will be focusing on their personalities and interactions here for this post.

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Bravo to myrkvidrs for a detailed look at this. As myrkvidrs postulates in this deep-dive analysis, there is a lot that confirms the relationship between Thranduil and Legolas is not as negative as the initial impression that one gets.

Even though the characterisations serve the scripts, which can be so maddeningly problematic while paying attention to nuances, much of the details and nuance are down to the actors’ ability to convey the emotion and intensity; with all due respect to Orlando Bloom, on Lee Pace’s part in particular.

The pity is that the general audience is not going to spend time studying the nuances, not even if they do see the movies repeatedly. They will, and do, form initial impressions and leave with those initial impressions.

And therein again the rub is while the brilliant portrayal is brilliant, the effort of the talent and the detailed layers crafted is wasted on a big population of the audience. Within the framework of a movie series that has so much going on, some things do need to be DEMONSTRATED overtly. Ironically, despite my gripes about the movies, I do feel this is a case where the common denominator needs to be given consideration and paid attention to. Editing is so tight, and the focus so otherly placed, there is no time for character moments to breath, and this particular relationship suffered, badly.

Movie-verse: Thranduil and Legolas’ relationship

Movie: Once more on the merry-go-round (An Addendum)

Thranduil_BotFAAn unexpected coincidence that is surely the perfect augmentation to Movie: Once more on the merry-go-round.

This one panel sums so well the questions. Not all, but well enough.

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Movie: Once more on the merry-go-round

Thranduil_BotFAI’ve worked through my feels and thoughts about BotFA for a whole week, with a rambling list of random thoughts, making a quickie fix-it ficlet for that bizarro ending scene between Thranduil and Legolas, pondered on the emotional quotients of LotR vs TH, expositioned on the social engineering work of the series, even showing a hint of my thraldom to the Elvenking during the proceedings. But I’ve not discussed the reception beyond the lurkmirk. That’s because the reviews I saw that were from fans’ perspective (of particular interest for me) were quite clear-cut in their support (or not) of the movies, and there wasn’t much that was interesting enough for a mention. Until now.

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Movie: Confessions of a Thranduil Fan

Thranduil_swordConfessions, by proxy, of a Thranduil!Fan. This is an unlooked for continuation of my BotFA/TH processing. The only difference being my statuses as a movie-firster, and a Book!Thranduil fangirl before the Hobbit movies ever were.

(Almost) Everything else dovetails. Of course I expect, at some future point, to hammer together my very own list of confessions. Until then, this, especially the last two paragraphs, is what I would wave at anyone who asks, “Why Thranduil?”

Where the Dog Star rages

Confession 1: When I read The Lord of the Rings for the first time, I did so without reading The Hobbit. As a result, I had no idea of Bilbo’s journeys, no clue who the hell Gollum was, or get any of the allusions the characters made (especially in The Fellowship of the Ring) to the adventures chronicled in that book. Nonetheless, I enjoyed my first brush with Tolkien immensely, and closed the covers quite satisfied with my foray into Middle Earth.

Didn't get half of that, but i liked it! Didn’t get half of that, but I liked it!

Confession 2: That first journey into Middle Earth was not entirely without some annoyances. The number of songs in the book threw me off a bit. I didn’t understand why these people, who were supposedly going off on a dangerous quest, spent their energy singing ridiculous songs about leaving home or, even worse, sometimes singing in…

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Movie: The Hobbit vs The Lord of The Rings. A question of emotional investment [spoiler]

Thranduil_BotFAI’ve only seen BotFA twice so far, which probably made my ruminating phase slower than most. Despite my misgivings about it, and the trilogy as a whole, RingstrilogyposterI’ve been drawing towards a contradictory conclusion about my thoughts and feelings about The Hobbit (TH) trilogy vis-à-vis The Lord of The Rings (LotR). Yes, despite my disgruntlement and passive-aggressive efforts to fix-it, I am more emotional invested in the former, though I enjoy the story of the latter more.

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