Directed by: Peter Jackson Starring: Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Ken Stott, Aidan Turner, Dean O’Gorman, Orlando Bloom, Evangeline Lilly, Lee Pace, Luke Evans Rated: PG-13 for extended sequences of intense fantasy action violence, and frightening images Peter Jackson appears to have finally run out of Hobbit. “The Battle of Five Armies” is the third and final film in his prequel trilogy, which uses J.R.R. Tolkiens’ book The Hobbit as a framework from which to hang a bunch of material from the appendices to The Lord of the Rings, along with a bunch of his own material. If you saw the previous films in the Hobbit trilogy, this one is essentially more of the same, just dialed up in intensity. There’s more fighting, more outside material, more fancy effects. If you like that sort of thing, it will deliver in spades. If Jackson’s style of adaptation makes you tear your hair, stay away. All
Peter Jackson continues his epic prequel trilogy with the new film “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.” As in the previous installment, “An Unexpected Journey,” the story found in the book “The Hobbit” is used as a framework, and events alluded to but not described there are filled in using the author’s other works. Unfortunately, as he did in his “Lord of the Rings” trilogy, Jackson has given us a second installment with a number of things he and his partners made up rather than sticking to the source material. There’s still a lot to love, but Tolkien purists may well be better off staying home.
Fans of Middle-Earth, rejoice! A new movie is out, ready to take you to that land of Elves, Hobbits, and Dwarves. It’s also making use of the new high frame-rate technology available for 3D projection, so if you’re a film tech nerd, it’s doubly exciting. This isn’t a non-stop action thriller, of course; as with “The Fellowship of the Ring,” it’s setting a trilogy in motion and starts off slow. Still, there’s a lot to love for all but the anti-fantasy crowd and hardcore Tolkien purists.
Directed by: Peter Jackson Starring: Elijah Wood, Sean Astin, Ian McKellan, Viggo Mortensen, Dominic Monaghan, Billy Boyd, Andy Serkis, and a cast of thousands. Rated: Rated PG-13 for intense epic battle sequences and frightening images. Parental Notes: Teens and preteens who enjoyed the previous films will definitely want to see this final installment. Many children may find the battle sequences too intense, for while they aren’t particularly gory they are visually and audibly overwhelming at times.
Starring: Elijah Wood, Sean Astin, Billy Boyd, Dominic Monaghan, Orlando Bloom, Viggo Mortensen, Ian McKellan, John Rhys-Davies, Miranda Otto, Karl Urban, Bernard Hill, Andy Serkis, David Wenham, Brad Dourif Directed by: Peter Jackson Rated: PG-13 Parental Notes: Although the violence in “The Two Towers” is not particularly graphic, it is too intense for young children. However, fantasy-minded preteens and teens will no doubt enjoy it.
Ponderings for Parents: “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” is an excellent film for anyone elementary school age or older. It’s frightening enough that children younger than six or seven will probably find the flying sequences and numerous scenes of physical danger too intense. “Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring” is a film for teens and above. The intense, although not overly gory, battle sequences may be too much for younger viewers.