The Hobbit Tag: #OneLastTime
On Wednesday, a few of our friends along with my older sisters and I went to watch The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. For Sarah, Mary and I, it was our second viewing. After watching a film like this - such a deep, and moving tale - it is hard to really put your thoughts together very coherently and make sense of the rich emotions and feelings you get through going through the legends of Middle-Earth, both in The Lord of the Rings, and The Hobbit as authored by J.R.R. Tolkien and beautifully adapted onto screen by Sir Peter Jackson and Co.
I can't write everything I wish to write - at least not yet! There will be time again to write my full thoughts, gather all the emotions of the story, especially after more people have watched the film and I won't be so easily giving away spoilers. But here, I simply wish to share some reflections on the things I took with me from The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, and to encourage you all to watch it.
The Battle of the Five Armies is beautiful, a powerful and very moving finale to the Hobbit, and I was moved to tears at the beauty, sadness and heart of this story. It was everything I was hoping for, and more. Each character's role reaches a peak of wonderfulness and emotion and depth that I delighted in so much! Also, it was terrible because it is the end of the story, and there is so much sadness and grief in the tale - but in the end, there is also the light and hope of redemption, repentance, forgiveness, love and friendship that stirs one's heart.
For being a film with such a big focus on warfare in the Battle for the Mountain (which is powerful, and epic!), it is full of depth in character and themes; full both in the sense of virtue and honour and loyalty, and also in the evil and horror of greed and corruption. Bilbo is wonderful - so noble and brave and dear. He made me laugh and cry and warmed my heart very much! He grows so much in this last film, and his loyalty and love for Thorin and the dwarves was so touching and heart-breakingly beautiful.
Bilbo is truly the heart of the Hobbit, and I think, therefore that Thorin is perhaps the story's soul. Thorin's story arc - his fall into greed and corruption and then his redemption and repentance and noble fight were portrayed beautifully and so vividly in this last film. I can't give in to spoilers, but Armitage played his role very well. You will have to just go and watch it, but Thorin's story is very reminiscent to Boromir's, and yet different. His struggle is very much the sickness of greed, and is brought across very strongly, with strong images of what succumbing to the lure of riches, wealth and power does to destroy and drown him, making him lose his honour and wisdom. But then, the second half. . . .*sobs* is so intense and emotional, and moving!
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I decided, in honour of the release of the last Hobbit film, to do a Hobbit-Tag (copied from My Lady Bibliophile's blog). Please feel free to join in and participate in this tag, if you like :D.
1. Favourite character?
2. Least favourite character?
The Master of Lake-town in the books, and Alfrid in the films. Bleh!
3. Have you read The Hobbit?
Yes, I have! I read The Hobbit soon after I read The Lord of the Rings for the first time, and watched the LOTR films in 2012. The first of the Hobbit films, An Unexpected Journey, was coming out later that year, but I did know that till a little later. Since then, I have reread sections and parts, often. I need to sit down one quiet evening and reread the book through again, though, now that I've seen all three Hobbit films. (wow, that sounds so sad to say!)
4. Favourite scene?
This is difficult because there are many special moments; but I think it must be the whole ending in the two or three last chapters of The Hobbit. The moment in the Battle for the Mountain when Thorin and the dwarves charge out of the mountain to join the fight, and the farewell of Thorin and Bilbo always move me deeply, especially Thorin's last words to Bilbo. It is so sad, and yet is such a redemptive moment, filled with forgiveness and friendship. This scene is just as beautiful, moving, powerful and sad in The Battle of the Five Armies movie, as it is in the book. (Now may I go into a corner, and sob my heart out just a little?)
But I also like the dwarves' arrival in Bag End and Bilbo's reception, the Riddles in the Dark scene with Bilbo and Gollum, the spider scene with Bilbo and Sting, when the dwarves are captured by the elves of the Woodland realm in Mirkwood, the conversation between Smaug and Bilbo and of course Bard's confrontation with Smaug in the chapter Fire and Water. <3
5. Favourite dwarf?
Oh, it would be Thorin. Definitely. :'( I know he is such a flawed, complex character, and he falls and succumbs to greed and corruption, but the redemption of his character is really powerful and so beautiful, and all the sufferings and humiliations of his difficult life, as a wandering prince, robbed of his homeland, with his father and grandfather's tragic ends are things that form a part of his journey and actions/choices. . . at heart his character explores the struggle of "loyalty, honour, and a willing heart", and his desire to honour the memory and heritage of his forefathers. The movies made me appreciate his character even more as well.
I have other close favourites. I love Balin. He's probably my favourite dwarf in The Hobbit, aside from the Durin line. He's such a dear old dwarf <3. Fili and Kili, Bofur, Bomber, Dwalin, Oin and Ori are some of my other favourites as well, mostly from a film perspective (though Fili and Kili are great in the book also!).
6. Favorite Wizard?
Uhm, is that even a proper question? It is Gandalf. Of course it is Gandalf.
7. Where would you live in Middle Earth?
The Shire because it is the home we all would wish for, or Rivendell because it is the place of rest and refreshment and of finding spiritual renewal - it is beautiful. I love Rohan best of all the lands of men or dwarves though. I love the history of the Roherrim. If I had to live anywhere else. . . Lothlorian is beautiful as well, but like Bilbo and Frodo, I know I couldn't live there always.
8. What is your OTP?
First of all, I didn't know what OTP really meant until I read a comment on My Lady Biblophile's blog about the meaning of the acronym. Basically, it means which fictional characters would you "match-make" ;). I know Tauriel is not a cannon character, but I really loved her role in the Hobbit movies. When I first heard that Jackson was going to introduce a non-canon female-elf into the story-line, I was wary lest the filmmakers spoil the story with a wishy-washy, romance character; But Tauriel, played by Evangeline Lilly, won me over to her from the beginning. She really added a tender/heart-felt element to The Hobbit story – someone I could route for from among the elves, and feel strong empathy for. She's quite a Tolkien character, even if she herself is never in any of the books. And though the romance/friendship with her and Kili was very touching and sad, I also like to think that Legolas and Tauriel's relationship could have worked out and gone on to something more. . . mostly, because I love the loyalty of Legolas to Tauriel.
In The Lord of the Rings, I always wanted it to work out between Eowyn and Faramir! :D
"Then, Éowyn of Rohan, I say to you that you are beautiful. In the valleys of our hills there are flowers fair and bright, and maidens fairer still; but neither flower nor lady have I seen till now in Gondor so lovely, and so sorrowful. It may be that only a few days are left ere darkness falls upon our world, and when it comes I hope to face it steadily; but it would ease my heart, if while the Sun yet shines, I could see you still. For you and I have both passed under the wings of the Shadow, and the same hand drew us back." – The Return of the King
“Do not scorn the pity that is the gift of a gentle heart.” – The Return of the King
9. Favorite quote?
Oh, I have so many! Not a fair question, not a fair question at all! *sulks* Okay, I will share some, all right? The first half of these quotes are from the book, the second half are from the movies - and are a bit of spoilers, so if you haven't seen them, especially the last film, you'd do well to skim them over.
"There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West. Some courage and some wisdom, blended in measure. If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”- Thorin, The Hobbit book
“I am looking for someone to share in an adventure that I am arranging, and it's very difficult to find anyone." Gandalf, The Hobbit book
“Then something Tookish woke up inside him, and he wished to go and see the great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick.” - The Hobbit, book
“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.” - The Hobbit, book
“I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led. And through the air, I am he that walks unseen. I am the clue-finder, the web-cutter, the stinging fly. I was chosen for the lucky number. I am he that buries his friends alive and drowns them and draws them alive again from the water. I came from the end of a bag, but no bag went over me. I am the friend of bears and the guest of eagles. I am Ringwinner and Luckwearer; and I am Barrel-rider.” - Bilbo, The Hobbit book
“Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?” - Gandalf, Hobbit.
"We are plain quiet folk and have no use for adventures. Nasty disturbing uncomfortable things! Make you late for dinner!” - Bilbo, The Hobbit
“Truly songs and tales fall utterly short of the reality, O Smaug the Chiefest and greatest of Calamities.” - Bilbo, The Hobbit.
(MOVIE QUOTES: *SPOILER WARNING*)
Gandalf: I do not know. Saruman believes it is only great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay... small acts of kindness and love. Why Bilbo Baggins? Perhaps it is because I am afraid... and he gives me courage.
-The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (film)
Bilbo: Look, I know you doubt me, I know you always have. And you're right... I often think of Bag End. I miss my books, and my armchair, and my garden. See, that's where I belong, that's home. That's why I came back... 'cause you don't have one, a home. It was taken from you. But I will help you take it back if I can. - Bilbo, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (film)
Far over the misty mountains cold / To dungeons deep and caverns old / The pines were roaring on the height / The winds were moaning in the night / The fire was red, it flame spread / The trees like torches blazed with light... - The dwarves, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (film)
“I would take each and every one of these Dwarves over an army from the Iron Hills. For when I called upon them, they answered. Loyalty. Honor. A willing heart... I can ask no more than that.” - Thorin, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (film)
“You will have to do without pocket handkerchiefs, and a great many other things, before we reach our journey's end, Bilbo Baggins. You were born to the rolling hills and little rivers of the Shire, but home is now behind you. The world is ahead.” - Gandalf, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (film)
"It is our fight. It will not end here. With every victory this evil will grow. If your father has his way, we will do nothing. We will hide within our walls, live our lives away from the light and let darkness descend. Are we are not part of this world? Tell me, Mellon, when did we let evil become stronger than us?" - Tauriel, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (film)
"You sit here, in these vast halls, with a crown upon your head and yet you are lesser now than you have ever been." - Dwalin, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (film)
"Farewell, Master Burglar. Go back to your books, your fireplace. Plant your trees, watch them grow. If more of us valued home above gold, it would be a merrier world." - Thorin, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (film)
10. Fili or Kili?
I like both of them, equally. In the books, they seemed two sides of the same coin, they did everything alike together. In the movies, I think I admire Fili just a little more, because of his loyalty to his brother "I belong with my brother", and seems the more mature of the two and yet, I also think Kili's role is more heart-felt and passionate - so I like that in him; he also reminds me of Thorin a little more. I don't know. They're both good lads.
11. Legolas or Thranduil?
12. Elves or Dwarves?
Hobbits. I like Hobbits best. Oh, wait! We aren't talking about the haflings. . . Well, I never thought I would say this, because I love the elves so much, both in The Silmarillion and in The Lord of the Rings, and generally, dwarves are very crude and uncultured. . . look what they did to Bilbo's home! But The Hobbit has given me a very deep appreciation of the dwarves. For The Hobbit, I would definitely choose dwarves!
13. What race would you be?
I am very much a hobbit, in all but size, really :). But what would I like to be? I think it would be human. I love elves, and to live among them, and I admire them; but I don't know if I ever could be one! :D
14. Favorite weapon?
Sting (Bilbo's sword), Orcrist (Thorin's sword) and Glamdring (Gandalf's sword).
15. Was there a scene that made you cry?
It took me a long time to be able to cry in books, while in movies I can easily be drawn to tears. This last year I have often found myself moved to tears from reading though, which I am very happy about, because I've always wished to be able to be adequately moved by words on a page, as much as in a scene from a film. I think the scenes in the book that bring tears to my eyes would be the final farewell of Thorin, and Bilbo and Bilbo's return journey home :'). In the films . . . well, I always get misty-eyed over the part when Gandalf tells Galadriel about why he chose Bilbo Baggins, and when Thorin asks Bilbo to forgive him at the end of An Unexpected Journey; in The Desolation of Smaug, I love the scene when the dwarves reach Erebor, and Balin and Thorin are near tears as they enter the Doors of the Lonely Mountain, their home. I cried several times in The Battle of the Five Armies; it is a bit of a crying film, you know?
16. Would you have gone on the adventure?
Yes, yes, I think I would. It would be nice if I did that journey with my family, but then, of course, it wouldn't be quite the same.
17. Have you watched the cartoon version?
No, but my sister, Sarah, did. I hear the elves resemble grass-hoppers? Sounds a little weird to me.
18. The Hobbit or the Lord of the Rings?
In a sense, nothing will ever be like or compare with The Lord of the Rings.
Yet, that is a sort of silly comparison, because the Hobbit is just as wonderful, and emotional and touching, and funny, and tragically sad and beautiful; the Hobbit is part of The Lord of the Rings, it tells the glimmering early stories, the first chapters if you will, of the grand tale that is in The Lord of the Rings. It really is not a contest. I love them both equally, deeply. <3
Yes, precious, yes I do! Our family, to be precise, owns Thorin's key, the key to the hidden door in the Mountain. It came with our purchase of The Desolation of Smaug: Extended Edition - it is pretty epic (and heavy!) and I love impersonating Thorin when he raises the key at the gates of Erebor and cries, "Let all who doubted us, RUE THIS DAY!" :D
(And I probably look really silly
doing it, actually).
20. Did you buy The Hobbit on DVD?
We own The Lord of the Rings DVDs (extended edition, please!) and the first two Hobbit films extended editons. We now only await the last and final dvd: The Battle of the Five Armies. And the extended edition. That. . . now, that will be an epic collection.
(A video showing some of the connections between The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings. Love it!)
(A video showing some of the connections between The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings. Love it!)
Have you seen The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies? If not, what are you waiting for?! :)