Kunga Sagar’s review published on Letterboxd:
I liked it. Way too bloated, but a good film! The length of The Lord of the Rings trilogy never bothered me, I was actually longing for more at the end of each one. As many have stated, The Hobbit is a relatively short book so to try to stretch it into three long movies is silly and appears to be nothing short of a cash grab from greedy studio heads.
Peter Jackson looked so sad in the behind the scenes footage of these films, it seems that they forced him to turn his original two film plan into a trilogy and it’s similar to how Disney fucked up by letting an awesome, daring director like Rian Johnson follow a charming but safe director like J.J. Abrams vision. Stop trying to force something that isn’t there guys. Either give Rian a full trilogy or buzz off.
Nevertheless, this is a fun and mostly exciting group adventure, which is part of what made The Fellowship of the Ring so special. Who doesn’t love a group working together to fight off bad guys and get to their elusive destination? Martin Freeman was the perfect casting and his comedic timing worked wonders for Bilbo Baggins. Ian McKellen does his thing as always, as does Richard Armitage who’s a nice addition to the universe. Andy Serkis’ scene was cool but again, too long! It felt like they were trying to make up for the fact that this film could’ve ended an hour ago.
I did like this movie and thought it had excellent moments of clever dialogue, intense action, and heartwarming moments. If they could’ve just accepted the fact that this portion of the story could’ve been told in an hour and a half, we could be looking at a classic here.
You’re still the man, Peter.