Saturday, July 9, 2011

Those dwarf pictures…



…I must say my reaction is a mixed bag, a fair bit of “meh,” to be honest.

First what I like.

The proportions seem great. The faces, excellent. The hair and beards, well done (if a little too neat and/or wind-swept).

Now what I don’t like.

The 3E D&D straps and buckles/black leathery appearance of their gauntlets and armor. This is radically different from what we see in the books, which are cloaks and brightly colored belts and hoods. And later, coats of fine, shining mail studded with bright gems from Smaug’s horde. Also, their weapons are rather too bulky and built for style and appearance, not war.

8 comments:

David J. West said...

Agreed, I think Jackson and I have quite different visions of what we read in the book.

Falze said...

They look a little too mean/tough to rely on a dopey hobbit, no matter what Gandalf told them. They look too young. Can you see them blundering into a trio of trolls and all getting captured? Sigh.

A Paladin In Citadel said...

I little early to draw any definite conclusions, considering these are publicity stills

Brian Murphy said...

They look a little too mean/tough to rely on a dopey hobbit, no matter what Gandalf told them.

Good point. The dwarves were setting out on a mission of revenge to kill a dragon and recover stolen treasure, but it was all very seat-of-your pants stuff and no thought given to the consequences, not even how they were going to deal with Smaug. The dwarves in these pictures look like professional kick-ass soldiers of fortune.

I little early to draw any definite conclusions, considering these are publicity stills

You're probably right.

Fred said...

I just watched Peter Jackson's version of _King Kong_. I fear what he may do to _The Hobbit_. It may turn out to be a a creature feature.

If he can inject a car chase scene into _King Kong_, and a gorilla hopping about like a squirrel monkey, what might he do to _The Hobbit_?

Wickedmurph said...

Oh no... he might... change things... Nooooooooooo... Peter Jackson has bum-raped my childhood!!!

I was never that fond of the idea that the dwarves were a bunch of bumbling dimwits that set off to kill a dragon with no weapons, armor or plan. They don't even get a sword until they find them in the troll-cave.

And then during the battle of five armies they roll out and chop the hell out of everyone except the Bodyguard of Bolg? It made no sense to me.

I don't like the oversized weapons, much too Final Fantasyesque, but I think I'm fine with the dwarves not being useless idiots until they magically transform into mighty warriors.

To go wandering unarmed around a world crawling with wargs, giants, goblins, dragons and giant spiders is the height of idiocy. Although it seems to turn out alright (for a while) when I do it in Dwarf Fortress.

Brian Murphy said...

Peter Jackson has bum-raped my childhood!!!

No, everyone knows that was George Lucas!

But seriously, I'm a fan of the LOTR films. I liked some of the changes and disliked others, but in general the films exceeded my expectations. So I'm not writing off The Hobbit based on a few stills.

I was never that fond of the idea that the dwarves were a bunch of bumbling dimwits that set off to kill a dragon with no weapons, armor or plan. They don't even get a sword until they find them in the troll-cave.

And then during the battle of five armies they roll out and chop the hell out of everyone except the Bodyguard of Bolg? It made no sense to me.


I think this can partly be attributed to the fact that Tolkien began writing The Hobbit as a children's book, and found that as he went along it morphed into something different. There is a definite shift in tone as it goes along. But I find that to be part of its charm and appeal.

Wickedmurph said...

You're right. It WAS George Lucas... That neckbearded bastard.

The Hobbit definitely gets more growed-up as you read along. To an extent it parallels Bilbo's unfolding understanding of what the world is really like outside of the Shire.

Tolkien always said that his books weren't CS Lewis-style metaphors, but the Hobbit could pretty easily be read as "Boy from Oxford goes to WW 1".

Not sure how well that transition works as a movie, though. I think I'll just trust - worked for the Lord of the Rings movies.