I’m not going to lie. When this movie ended, I had a sense of sadness. It wasn’t because the ended was overly sad in any way, but more because it really was the end. The end of this story and the end of an era. It all ends with today’s feature film, 2014’s The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.
This final act is different than its two predecessors in that this one really isn’t a quest movie, in that there aren’t minor adventures that take place while a band of heroes travel from point A to point B. The traveling is done. The quest has been completed – now they must defend what they have secured.
We do pick up exactly where we left off last time – Smaug is about to terrorize Lake-Town, and he does – big time. That is until Bard the Bowman takes him down with a pretty inventive black arrow shot. After that the people of Lake-Town need to rebuild and come knocking on the elf door looking for some help.
Of course Thorin, played by Richard Armitage, changes his mind as he starts to be driven mad by the treasure and his search for the Arkenstone, and he refuses to let humans in.
Meanwhile, Orcs are coming to take down the dwarfs, the Elves show up with an army (I think because they knew the orcs were coming, or because they wanted some jewels too – sorry it’s a long movie that I watched in chunks today) and they battle the dwarfs (do they help with the orcs too? I assume they did but hell I’ve been wrong about more than that. Sad really since I just finished the movie).
The last chunk of this movie is a giant battle between Orcs, Man, Elves, Dwarfs….And the fifth army is another army of Orcs (right???).
I’m not here as a reviewer, just a (tired) viewer with some thoughts. So forgive me if this one isn’t exactly a blog of the year candidate.
This is fantasy though, right? Heroes vs. Villians. In this world, the villians may win the fight, but the heroes always win the war. In the end, we lose some of our heroic dwarfs, most notably the king himself, but the good guys come out on top – as they always do.
Bilbo’s quest is over, and he is free to go home – where they all think he’s dead and are auctioning off his stuff! The movie ends with the flashback ending and returning us to the older Bilbo, who receives a knock on his door from an old wizard friend. A perfect end of one adventure – and the start of another…
A few things of note:
- I knew I recognized the bad guy from Fast and Furious 6 from somewhere! Luke Evans (Bard the Bowman) played the main baddie, Shaw, in that big dumb action movie.
- I didn’t realize until this movie how many actors from television shows that I enjoy are in this movie. I mentioned before about Evan Lilly from Lost and Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman from Sherlock, but I didn’t mention that Richard Armitage (Thorin) was also in a BBC adaptation of Robin Hood that I loved – though he was pretty hateable throughout most of it. Then there was Lee Pace. He plays Thranduil (the dicky elf who is Orlando Bloom’s dad) but I knew him back when he was a simple Pie maker named Ned in the wonderfully quirky Pushing Daisies. Lastly there’s Manu Bennett. I had no idea it was him, because he was the actor behind Azog, the main orc. But I know him as Slade from the CW hit show, Arrow, and soon to be in another fantasy epic, Terry Brooks’ Shannara Chronicles, a show that’s actually being done by MTV – which scares me.
I mentioned earlier that this movie ending made me sad. It was really what it represented that made it sad. Peter Jackson created a phenomenon over these six movies based on the works of Tolkien, and it was all over. After the Lord of the Rings ended, there was always talks about making a Hobbit. But what now? I am sure there are other stories they can pull from, and make movies, and make money – but it probably won’t ever be Peter Jackson again. The look, the feel, the years that went into these movies is now a thing of the past. As I said in the opening.
The end of an era.
26 down. 4 to go.