“Palpable energy and purpose” in second Hobbit feature, says US reviewer

The influential Hollywood Reporter has praised Peter Jackson’s second Hobbit feature after its world premiere in Los Angeles this week.

Veteran reviewer Todd McCarthy writes:

“Nearly everything about The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug represents an improvement over the first installment … The “unexpected journey” launched in last Christmas’ box-office behemoth becomes the heart of the matter this time around, making for plenty of peril, warfare, theme-park-ride-style escapes and little-guy courage…

“After exhibiting an almost craven fidelity to his source material the first time out, Jackson gets the drama in gear here from the outset with a sense of storytelling that possesses palpable energy and purpose. Toward the end, his perennial tendency to let bloat creep in reasserts itself to an extent; as in the Lord of the Rings films, not to mention King Kong, he has a hard time knowing when enough is enough even as the three-hour goalpost looms dead ahead. But for the most part he moves the episodic tale along with reasonable speed for a leviathan while serving up enough fights, close shaves and action-filled melodrama for an old-fashioned movie serial or a modern video game.”

McCarthy says the ending is “a true cliff-hanger, the resolution to which audiences will be lining up for on December 17, 2014.”

Read the full review here


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