Film Review – The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)


Title: The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)

Director: Peter Jackson (Meet the Feebles)

Cast: Martin Freeman, Sir Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Orlando Bloom, Lee Pace, Luke Evans

Plot: Bilbo Baggins (Freeman) and his dwarve friends lead by Thorin (Armitage) hold out deep in the Lonely Mountain as a huge array of Middle Earths most renowned gather to claim the riches that lay in the heart of the mountain.

“You’ve won the mountain. Is that not enough?”

Review by Eddie on 21/01/2015

Frequent unwarranted comic relief, horrible and cringe inducing romantic subplots, strangely questionable CGI, Billy Connolly appearances and a sense of deja-vu, yes indeed ladies and gentleman, hobbits and orcs, the finale to our life in Middle Earth and the supposedly grand farewell to 3 years of meandering Hobbit entries is a massive misfire and solid evidence that something from the get go was a tad NQR about Peter Jackson’s follow up to the spectacular and accomplished Lord of the Rings trilogy.

You’d be hard pressed to find vehement defenders of the Hobbit series and that is for good reason. From the moment that we all knew the seemingly short source material was turned into a 3 part trilogy many questioned just how the simple story of Bilbo (once more played by Martin Freeman well but not memorably) and his adventures with a bunch of dwarves we can’t remember the names of could possible be padded out into 3 two hour plus movies. The first entry into the series was validation for concerns that fans had then the second installment showed enough promise that we were justified in being excited for this last epic hurrah that is sadly such a non-event that you truely wonder if anyone will remember it in 10 or even 5 years time.

While we may have been well and truly spoiled with the LOTR series there is still no excuse for the often shoddy and amateurish way the Battle of the Five Armies comes together. After a promising start the film quickly descends into an arduously plotted film with even more atrocious scripting and it feels like once and for all that Jackson knew not what to do with the material at his disposal. After three films we still feel no real affiliation with Bilbo or any of the countless barely registering dwarves and the whole film feels like it’s just waiting for the battle to commence and when it does what a let down it is.

What should be something that matches the large scale carnage that flowed through the Two Towers and Return of the King is instead punctured by some worryingly laughable CGI, more delving into romantic subplots, oh and a man dressed as a women because that is exactly what we need to see when 5 vicious armies have gathered to do battle. It’s a real shame that this meeting of foes is such a let down as small moments in this battle showcase just what could’ve been or perhaps just remind us that whatever Jackson was trying to do here, his done before and done it much better.

One eyed fans and those that merely wish to be reminded of past glories may find great pleasure in watching this last entry into a once great franchise but all those with their eyes open and brain switched on will be sadly disappointed in a film that will be quickly lost in time. Some good will from the glories of old save this film from the depths of one star failures.

2 ridiculous mountain goats out of 5


23 responses to “Film Review – The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)

  1. Would you consider watching a 3-4 hour “fan-edit” of the film? There are already some coming out, and given how I liked (but didn’t love at all) the bloated “trilogy,” the idea of a condensed version intrigues me…

  2. When the badly CGI-d Dain and his equally CGI-d warpig rolled in, I gave up on questioning whether the CGI could get worse. And then the Legolas CGI happened. What on earth happened, Weta Digital?

    • Oh man who knows, it feels like they have taken step backwards in many aspects. Lucky they had Dawn of the Planet of the Apes to hold their hat on but this effort was so bad.

  3. The Battle of the Five Armies is a strange film. Whenever Thorin or Bilbo were on screen the movie felt lifted. It really shouldn’t have started with the ending of the second film. Some of the CGI was fairly bad (although perhaps overstated by many), but God help me the ten year old inside was having a blast (not as much a blast as the previous two or The Lord of the Rings).
    Wanna know what I’ve done since watching The Battle of the Five Armies? I have played Shadow of Mordor and The Battle For Middle-Earth 2.

  4. I rather enjoyed The Hobbit; it could have been a lot worse. But at the same time it could have been a lot lot better! I do agree with a lot of what you said. Seriously the only part I can remember from the 2nd movie is Smaug, because Smaug is… he’s just awesome. Looking forward to that edit mentioned in the comments :D. It’ll be interesting.

  5. I absolutely agree with you, this movie was pretty embarassing. The fight scene was a joke, was an hour long and barely anything happened. Could have been so much better.

  6. Gods, yes – this review nails it. I was sooo disappointed by the end, with a big WTF-just-happened moment thrown in there. So not what I was expecting and my expectations weren’t that high to begin with. I hope to see a fan-edit that will tell a decent story and not fill up time with bloated battles.

  7. Sorry to say but I disagree with your review. Cgi was terrible in parts I’ll admit, splitting the hobbit into 3 movies was also unnecessary – but as potentially our last journey to middle earth I wqs more than happy to have it last a while.

    Im sure you could cut scenes from all 3 films and the connection to the dwarves I cant even name was lacking – but I had a great time with the series and felt the last one was made for the fans.

    All the tie ins with lotr, seeing our favorites have one last hurrah in a battle vs evil and once again our winged friends saving the day on their terms.. just enjoyed it throughout. It was light hearted fun my friend.
    4 out of 5

    • Glad you enjoyed it so Scott, I to loved the old series and was always more than up for some more time in Middle Earth but this series was a big old letdown, and this last entry just an embarrassment to the Middle Earth name.

  8. I had a bad feeling about The Hobbit movies since it was announced there would be three of them. I thought the first two had high and low points, but I expected this would be the one Peter Jackson would be most comfortable with since it would just be an all-out battlefest. That’s basically what it was, and I thought it succeeded as that. It was a good Michael Bay movie: nothing special at best, and kind of annoying at worst. I joked with my wife I couldn’t wait to see it so we could be done with this series. When I need my cinematic Hobbit fix, I plan on returning to the Bass/Rankin 1977 animated version, because it was vastly superior to Jackson’s debacle.

  9. Pingback: 10 Directors That Need a Hit | Jordan and Eddie (The Movie Guys)·

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