Blu-ray Review: THE HOBBIT - THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG 3D

PrintE-mail Written by Andrew Pollard

The Hobbit - The Desolation of Smaug Review

Review: The Hobbit – The Desolation of Smaug / Cert: 12A / Director: Peter Jackson / Screenplay: Various / Starring: Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Benedict Cumberbatch / Release Date: Out Now

For a lot of people, the second of Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy was a dull, repetitive entry of that particular series. With the arrival of Jackson’s second Hobbit film, some fans had concern. Fear not, though, for The Desolation of Smaug delivers quite the impressive spectacle.

Here we pick things up with the thirteen dwarves, led by Thorin Oakenshield (Armitage). Along with Gandalf (McKellen) and Bilbo Baggins (Freeman), the dwarves are on a journey to reclaim the dwarf kingdom of Erebor. As their journey takes them across lands inhabited by elves, orcs, giant spiders and much more, the target is to reach the Lonely Mountain. The thing is, that is where the Dragon Smaug resides.

After a slow, raspy first 20 minutes, plus a large role for Orlando Bloom’s Legolas (not a good thing), this film had us a little uneasy. Luckily, from here on in, the action, character development and overall journey really picks up. Newcomers like Evangeline Lilly’s Tauriel and Luke Evans’ Bard are great additions, bringing a freshness and likeability with them. Then there are the dwarves. Here we’re given aggressive, clinical dwarves on the rampage to reclaim their homeland. And, of course, we have Bilbo and his slow descent into succumbing to the charms of ‘the ring.’ If that wasn’t enough, the dastardly Smaug has the dulcet tones of one Benedict Cumberbatch.

The film itself is beautiful to watch, with the Blu-ray transfer a true joy, although there’s also a whole lot of brutal action scenes. The film is only a 12A, yet orcs and other such nasty creatures are disposed of with a clinical elegance. From the water escape, to the highest rock faces, to the battle with Smaug himself, The Desolation of Smaug looks fantastically crisp.

As we've become accustomed to, this 3D Blu-ray set is overflowing with extensive special features and bonus material. Amongst the production featurettes, on-set diaries, cast interviews, trailers, etc, a particular highlight is seeing the thirteen dwarves conducting dance numbers and workout routines that would make Olivia Newton-John proud.

Going into The Desolation of Smaug, we had some major concerns, not least Jackson’s splitting of The Hobbit into a trilogy. We were wrong. Even Bloom’s Legolas comes out of this with a likeability. Some of the movie will seem maybe a tad too familiar, but overall Jackson has delivered a movie that has you itching with anticipation for its follow-up. For that, we happily eat some humble pie.

Extras: Seven Featurettes / Music Videos / Five Trailers



Suggested Articles:
Big old houses. On the one hand, great - impress your mates with all that space to spread themselv
Laura is the definitive popular girl, surrounded by grounded friends, a hunky surfer boyfriend and
Paths of Glory is a 1957 World War 1 drama based on a true story, and its release on blu-ray is a
Harking back both to anthology and calendar-related horrors of the past, Holidays sets a task for ea
scroll back to top

Add comment

Security code
Refresh

Other articles in DVD / Blu-ray Reviews

DARLING 27 September 2016

FRIEND REQUEST 27 September 2016

PATHS OF GLORY (1957) 27 September 2016

THE EVIL IN US 27 September 2016

CONSUMPTION 27 September 2016

DARK MATTER SEASON 2 27 September 2016

MINISCULE: VALLEY OF THE LOST ANTS 26 September 2016

HOLIDAYS 26 September 2016

WARCRAFT: THE BEGINNING 26 September 2016

THE LAST KING 26 September 2016

- Entire Category -

Sign up today!
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner