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Dwarves, Elves, Lots of Walking, and Maybe a Dragon: Check Out the New Hobbit Trailer

UPDATE: Desolation of Smaug is now out.  It’s pretty exactly the movie we thought it would be, for better or worse – more of the latter, really.  Check out our review here.

Despite the fact that last year’s The Hobbit: The Unexpected Journey didn’t exactly set box office records alight in triumph, it still made a profit and garnered reviews of the “this is not terrible, but it’s still way too long” variety.  With enthusiasm like that, what could they do but release a trailer for the second Hobbit installment six months ahead of its release date? Crowds were clamoring for more. To answer those rabid, indifferent calls, we have, not an epic quest of underdogs triumphing against all odds, but a trailer for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, about a group of underdogs triumphing against all odds, a cinematic event practically guaranteed to have a climax encounter with the titular dragon and be preceded by nearly three hours of walking to said dragon and sporadic engagements in freakishly lower-stakes skirmishes.

But, still you know- dragon. Not three like Game of Thrones gives us every week, but still, there's definitely one dragon.
But, still you know, eventually– dragon. Not three like Game of Thrones gives us every week, but definitely one dragon.

We’ve got the same crew since not one of those sodding elves had to the decency to be mortally wounded in the name of compelling plot developments. But, hang onto your hats and scraggly beards Tolkien fans, now we’ve got… wait for it…elves, perhaps the least interesting protagonists ever to stand, stare ahead, and make pretentious statements in reverberating voices. We’ve even got Legolas, which sounds exciting until you realize you only really liked him when he was one-half of the Legolas and Gimli comedy duo. Otherwise, Legolas is just Katniss Everdeen with longer, flowier locks and less emotional depth. So, yeah. We’ve got Legolas. Yay?

"I may be about to put an arrow in your eye, but there's not a hair out of place."
“I may be about to put an arrow in your eye, but there’s not a hair that’s out-of-place.”

Basically, it looks like our stalwart band of dwarves (so ill-defined,  I cannot even remember one of their names– one is Richard Armitage, one is James Nesbitt by way of This is Spinal Tap, and one is Aidan Turner, staked on Being Human, so he could be a part of this saga, but their characters are lost on me.),wizard, and hobbit are still questing onwards.

Glad I'm not the only one who noticed this.
Glad I’m not the only one who noticed this.

By this point, though, they’re probably just wishing those eagles that rescued them at the end of the last movie had flown them all the way to their lost kingdom.

"Hey, wait! Come back! We'd get there in, like, five minutes if you'd just fly us."
“Hey, wait! Come back! We’d get there in, like, five minutes if you’d just fly us. Stupid eagles.”

They’re gonna meet up with some elves, including Legolas (who’s far less eager to plunge, bow-first, into an epic battle than he will be in The Lord of the Rings), meet some obstacles, overcome those obstacles, then journey on until they stop. Basically, it looks like we’ve got elves looking stately and static (including the always welcome sight of Pushing Daisies’ Lee Pace, though), and some other stuff that will stall you until you’re about to die of boredom. Once you’re contemplating death by falling on an Elven-crafted sword, I’m sure the movie will throw that epic dragon battle your way, though. So, chin-up.

Being a piemaker hardened him, though I doubt he'll need to bring anyone back from the dead here.
Being a piemaker hardened him, though I doubt he’ll need to bring anyone back from the dead here. That power would really come in handy on Game of Thrones, though.

We’ve also got barrel races down plunging rapids, important-sounding speeches full of doom-laden prophecies, and -Yikes!- not that freakin’ giant spider again. Not cool, Peter Jackson! I had just gotten that out of my nightmares.

Webs. Where there's webs, there's spiders. Where there's spiders, there's me cowering in a  corner, praying it will go away.
Webs. Where there’s webs, there’s spiders. Where there’s spiders, there’s me cowering in a corner, praying they’ll  go away.

If I sound a bit bitter and hard on The Desolation of Smaug, it probably just stems from the Hobbit’s need to not be nine hours long. In fact, it need not have been three hours long. One two-and-a-half hour movie would have been more than sufficient for a book that seems to devote most of its time to singing and putting away dishes. A cynical person might say director Peter Jackson is stretching out this tiny, for children prequel in order to have a collection of gold that would rival his cinematic dwarves.

Though I have no real interest in seeing whatever he's calling his dragon.
Though I have no real interest in seeing whatever he’s calling his “dragon” hiding out there.

However, I don’t think that’s the case, actually. Jackson’s a passionate, enthusiastic, devoted Tolkien fan. It’s easy to mistake enthusiasm for profit-margins, but I think he just loves Middle-earth too much. His passion and eagerness got the better of him.

I rest my case.
I rest my case.

I’ll still be seeing this movie, though, so my jaded, sarcastic quippery goes only so far. After all, at the very least, it’ll inspire me to re watch the Lord of the Rings all over again, like the last film did. I’m sure it will be fine. It’s just hard to get that enthused over its upcoming release.

To sum up, it looks as though we may finally get to the epic Smaug battle (and the soothing, commanding baritone of Benedict Cumberbatch), but it will be an overstuffed, baggy (Bilbo Baggy, if you will) trek to get there.

Check out the trailer for the film, in theatres December 13, 2013:

So, what do you think? Are you excited for The Desolation of Smaug? Are you sorry The Hobbit wasn’t just one movie? Let us know in the commentn

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