The One Where I Would Walk 500 Miles For Peter Jackson
I really like The Lord Of The Rings. I love it, even. Not enough to keep it “on show” with my fave Blueys, though. Instead its “demoted” to under my 5 y/os bed. And he doesn’t even know it’s there. His Mum, who reminds me a bit of Galadriel, says he can’t watch them. But then she showed him Harry Potter, (just as scary?). Plus she said the spider in Harry Bloody Potter was called Shelob. That’s a massive error – so means I’ll show ET the real Shelob. You know. So he can make up his own mind. Gay little wizard boy? Or tall, elegant old… gay… wizard? No contest.
The Hobbit has been on my radar forever. The whole 48fps thing is fascinating. (LOOK!) So much so, that I took everyone’s advice. 2D first. Then 48fps 3D – which I’ll catch next week. It’s really important to stress something, though… Wherever you sit on the 48fps thing, just remember there’s a film buried in there somewhere. The 48fps matters if you want it too… If not, if 2D is all you want… then it doesn’t need to matter at all.
What I can not ever comprehend is the hating that goes with new innovation. PJ has been crucified by loads of critics for what the 48fps looks like. Everytime I read that, I scream on the inside. Watch it in 2D, then. Don’t like 3D? Watch it in 2D. Theres a choice. Don’t like 48fps? Don’t know what it is? Non-plus? See it in 2D.
I think 48fps could be a massive leap. I still believe in 3D. Both together could be special. Regardless, I’ll see both. See? A choice.
For me, The Hobbit is a breath of fresh air, regardless. After a really strange year, (that is summed up perfectly by the beautiful failure that is DKR),it took me back to a better time at the cinema. When I used to go with Mrs T. When we gasped at the firey demon thing that dragged Gandalf to his death. (Natch). It was genuinely great seeing these guys back on the big screen. I’d missed them. I’ve been incredibly tight not buying the Extended Blueys. I’ll remedy that tonight. I do love these films. And I’ll love the new ones too. At the end, with that final teasing shot, if you’re sat in the cinema, you know you’ll be scrambling back for Part Two. And why wouldn’t you? PJ is a genius film maker. Its been too long since he fell out with my Hero, and saw Lovely Bones become duller because of it.
Too long since he directed the best fight scene of the last ten years. Three T-Rex’s. One King Kong. Perfect. That’s a 3D conversion I’d pay good money to see.
What he brings is a sense of scale to what is a well-worn story. There’s nothing new here. In fact, it’s as much a reboot of the original trilogy as anything. An hour in, something happens and you think… Fellowship. Not in a bad way. As I say, I’ve missed these guys. If PJ feels the need to have another slow motion battle on top of a cliff, with a slow motion death. So be it. Part of me thinks he’s earned the right to do that – but also, by then, I was totally captivated. So it works. I watch The Hobbit and think Spielberg couldn’t do better. The sense of adventure is pure 80′s Spielberg, in fact.
The thing I love most about LOTR, and The Hobbit will get nailed for this too, is how ripe for parody it is. The first 45 minutes will drive detractors nuts. A few beautiful battle scenes aside, (that I bet money look the SHIT in 3D), its talky talk talk talk. But I loved it. A bit of humour here and there. Great. A little bit of me was thinking just get the fuck on with it, but in general, it works. And that’s down to Martin Freeman. In a BIG way. I’m a huge fan. The Office is the pinnacle of comedy for me, and I love MF in that. So much so that I never would have thought he could pull this off. Come the end though, you absolutely believe. And the beauty of that, is that Freeman still plays it straight. He still wants to be back Home. But he’ll stay. I never got emotionally engaged with the fan, but there’s glimmers that I will do with the others. Freeman will be pivital to that.
When the film comes into is in the last hour. The introduction of Gollum is sublime. Even then the film treads dangerously close to looking like a re-run of Fellowship. In fact especially so. All of it feels like a retread – much in the way that Amazing Spiderman did with Tobey’s version. But I still can’t fault it. Its superlative film making – with a sensational cast. Ian McKellen is fantastic, and the whole thing looks gorgeous. I can’t wait to see Rivendale in 3D. And the tracking, swooping shots through the Orc Kingdom will “justify” the 48fps for me. I know I’ll love that format, already.
So that’s my take on it. Typically rambling. Contradictory. Muddled. But it doesn’t matter. If you were going to see The Hobbit you were going to see The Hobbit. The question is, if you weren’t… why not? I don’t do books – so take your arguments of how PJ has dragged the book out somewhere else. It’s irrelevant to me.
I’m off to watch King Kong, and dwell in the genius that is Peter Jackson. I bet he’s sat at Home in a T-Shirt that used to be too small, but is now too big, smoking a stogie about that. Well played, Sir. I feel like phoning him. But what would I say? I’d probably channel MF in The Office and tell him I like his little beard.