The Hobbit: Book or Movies?

I know what you’re thinking – “Girl, you are so behind the times!” I know, I know. The book was first published in 1937, and the movies came out from 2012-2014. Well, I don’t care because I read the book and watched the movies now, and guess what? They’re timeless! It’s amazing how the emotions and lessons in this story are still relevant today. I guess we don’t learn very quickly (or ever), but that’s a discussion for another post.

As for the book, I really enjoyed the dialogue and how well you got to know the personalities of the main characters. As with most of J.R.R. Tolkein’s books, the beginning is a bit tough to get through, but the ending payoff is so worth sticking it out! He has good descriptions of the characters and landscapes, and the point of view the story is told in is interesting and fun. The only thing I found really brutal in the book was the songs. At first, I painstakingly read through them thinking they would reveal some secrets, but after a while I honestly just skipped over them.

The movie: I have to admit, I always get nervous watching a movie after I read the book, and I have a tendency to go into it a bit biased being the book worm that I am. However, for once I wasn’t disappointed (yay)! The scenery was beautiful as was the work done on the characters and CGI. I actually enjoyed the songs being able to hear them and their melodies. All together, the movies were fun and action packed.

Now for the juicy stuff. Which was better?

I wondered how on Earth they were going to take the shortest of the Middle Earth books and turn it into three movies. Well, I figured it out – by adding a bunch of stuff that wasn’t in the book. Some was good, and some was unnecessary.

I always wondered what Gandalf was up to when he disappeared for long periods of time in the book. In the movies, we get to see this. As for his cousin, Radagast the Brown, that was an interesting character, but what is up with his hair? Is that bird poop?? Gross.

The Elves. It was kind of silly to bring Legolas into the movie just to give the girls someone to swoon over. As for Tauriel, honestly I’m still undecided. A love story is always a good time (I’m a big sap), and some day I want to be a bad ass just like her. However, in a way I feel adding her character almost took more away from the story than it added. It completely changed the way I had seen both the Woodland King and Kili in the book.

Azog. I didn’t care for this character. Really, he just pissed me off, but I guess that was the point.

How about the changed scenes?

The addition of Frodo into the movies annoyed me. I feel it was time wasted that was just explained in the Lord of the Rings movies. We already know there is a connection, thank you very much.

The troll scene and Smaug scene. I feel as though these shouldn’t have been altered from the book. The movies try too hard to make the dwarves seem more heroic than they were intended to be. In both of these scenes in the book, Bilbo is sent out on his own. Adding the dwarves into these takes away from the development of Bilbo’s character and messes with the integrity of the dwarves’ characters. I did like the visual of a shiny golden Smaug, though.

The part of all this that confused me was the fact that they added so much in to make three movies, but then left out major scenes for character development and shortened the timeline on much of it.

All in all, this is one of the few times where I’m going to say: read the book AND watch the movies. Each has its ups and downs, both the book and the movies are very entertaining.

I would love to start a discussion. Let me know what you think, even if you think my opinion is total crap! If you haven’t read the book or watched the movies, check out the links below so you can join in the discussion, too.

The book (Kindle, audio, hardcover, or paperback): The Hobbit

The movies (full trilogy here): The Hobbit Trilogy

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