Saturday, December 29, 2012

Movie Reviews: "The Hobbit" and "Lincoln"

This is my favourite time of year for so many reasons, one of which is it is time to prepare for my annual Oscar night tradition with my family -- meaning, I need to be sure to see potential "Oscar-worthy films" while they are still in theatres!  Now that the Golden Globe nominations are available, it's time to consider that as an indication of later potential Oscar nominees!

I've seen two movies the past two nights.  First, The Hobbit, and then Lincoln.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
or... "Oh Gawd, More Lord of the Rings... Why am I even bothering?"

So, I don't like the Lord of the Rings series.  I know that might be shocking to some, but they were just SO LONG and BORING to watch.  I enjoyed Fellowship of the Ring, I suppose, well enough to see The Two Towers at its midnight opening screening... but I was a high school student, I went with the flow of my friends.  After that, I couldn't stand the series (not that I didn't see Return of the King in theatres, because I, of course, did).  I have zero interest in ever re-watching these long, boring, drawn out movies -- even if the New Zealand backdrop was stunning.  Okay, okay, I am also not an Elijah Wood fan so that could be part of why I don't care for these films.

I wanted to see The Hobbit, though, because I felt like I should.  I felt like it may be an Oscar-nominated series of films one day too, and so I have a duty to see it.  I've never read the book, so I don't have any background knowledge about this story.  I really like the actor playing young Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) because I absolutely love him as Watson from BBC's Sherlock.  The movie was long... as expected.  That was the "completely expected journey".  They are apparently doing two more films, so ... ack!  It had lovely cinematography and all, but was too long, and not overly interesting as someone who is not a Hobbit fan from childhood.  It was a likeable enough film, had a few funny bits, but all in all... eh.  Lord of the Rings: The Prequel - Still Boring!

or... "History: Disney Style"

I love history, so I definitely enjoyed Lincoln.  Daniel Day-Lewis did a stupendous job.  The film mainly follows Lincoln and the political men he works with as he tries to pass the 13th Amendment, which abolishes slavery.  There are only a couple of gruesome scenes of the Civil War, mostly the film takes place in the White House and in the House of Representatives (or whatever political building that was), and there is a lot of chatter, chatter, chatter.  It's a film that's a lot of talk, a bit bland... but that's how historical films are at times, so it's not unexpected.

I did feel like it was a film distributed by Disney that felt like a film distributed by Disney.  It was a bit light, it didn't feel like an "epic historical film" the way I would imagine a Best Picture nominee to feel.  I actually am a bit confused right now as to how much of an Oscar winner this will be -- other than Daniel Day-Lewis perhaps winning as best actor because he did a fantastic job.  It just felt a bit like those A Part of Our Heritage commercial rather than an epic film, in my opinion anyway.  It wasn't exactly what I was expecting.  Mr. Lock doesn't completely agree with me on this, so I think it was my perception and you may feel differently if you see the film yourself of course.

Oh, and I have to say that Tommy Lee Jones was a distraction for me.  I felt like I couldn't believe him as a character from that time, I just kept seeing and hearing Tommy Lee Jones... and it was too bad.  I really think he ruined it for me, though he's a fine enough actor, he isn't diverse enough and all I saw was him... not his character.

Overall, a good film, but a bit dry, and definitely not as climactic and "epic" as I would imagine a potential Best Picture Oscar nominee to be.

So, the reviews begin!  I have many more films to see... we are off to Les Miserables on New Years Day!  I'm looking forward to that one!

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