The Sound and the Furry

The Hobbit sucked, but look, Ryan Gosling!

The Hobbit: There: written and directed by Paul Fistinyourface; based on a novel by some English guy from South Africa; starring nobody (2012): The more I think about Peter Jackson’s Hobbit, the less I like it. Frankly, I wish I’d watched the Rankin-Bass animated version instead. And the Rankin-Bass version isn’t very good. Anyway, the movie involves a lot of little things hitting each other, making me think it was partially scripted by Napoleon from Time Bandits.

Jackson and his longtime collaborators Fran Walsh and Phillipa Boyens do a bang-up job of removing almost everything fantastic and whimsical and charming from the brief source text and replacing them with endless fight-and-flight sequences, Screenwriting 101 character motivation, and an amazing amount of unfunny funny business involving dwarfs and Radaghast and stuff that I’ve already forgotten.

It’s 2 hours and 45 minutes long, feels longer, and causes terrible dread in my heart when I ponder the idea that this is the first of three movies. Jackson has become as leaden, clumsy, and self-referential a director as late 1980’s Spielberg. Not recommended.

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