|The extended version does have|
|more of Beorn, which is nice.|
Five Armies' extended sequences are MORE battle scenes and explain the extended version's "R" rating. In fact, the extended sequences contain one of the most Grimm-worthy, fairy tale horrific scenes I've seen in a movie (I don't watch a lot of horror), namely Alfrid being choked on by an orc-beast-thingy.
I was quite disappointed. I had hoped that there would be at least a few extra non-battle scenes, such as an expansion of Bilbo's surreptitious departure from Erabor (this scene is longer in the book); at least one more scene between Tauriel and Fili; more LOTR references at the end . . .
I still consider Freeman and Armitage's scenes with the acorn, at the armory, at the gate, and on the ice flow to be the best scenes in the entire trilogy.
I am not displeased that Jackson turned The Hobbit into a trilogy. I'm a huge fan of his work with Tolkien's masterpieces and since I now own The Desolation of Smaug in extended format, I'm sure the others will follow. Nevertheless, I must admit, The Lord of the Rings trilogy is the stronger of the two, having a more cohesive storyline--despite the multiple subplots.
This is entirely comparative. If Jackson had never made The Lord of the Rings, would The Hobbit be my new standard?
But my assessment did lead me to ponder if The Hobbit has the same resistance to a strict storyline as The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. I love The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the book (though I didn't when I was younger). The BBC series with Sam West is quite good. The 2010 movie is okay but ultimately doesn't work so well. This is the type of narrative that lends itself to a series, comprised of five to six 1-hour episodes, rather than a movie.
|Bilbo and Lobelia: those spoons!|
I am looking forward The Silmarillion--one can always hope! :)