The Hobbit Movie Trilogy is Going to be Terrible.

The Hobbit Will Suck

Anyone with any knowledge of the novel, by J. R. R. Tolkein, should already be dreading the awesome-ification of Peter Jackson's dreaded, multi-million-dollar machinery. Why? Because despite the Oscar award for the Lord of the Rings trilogy, that film was quite a dreadful piece of film, compared to the source material, and the most frustrating deus ex machinas of the whole thing from the book do not translate well to film. In fact, it was quite a disgusting letdown that Strider getting over his prejudice against the undead ghosts was the thing that saved the day, not the heroic stand of Gandalf and the soldiers of Gondor. In the book, the weight of history was a palpable thing, felt and held and believed, and it made sense. In the film, it was a cheap moment handled cheaply, and leaving the audience feeling cheated that such a machination fixed everything like magic undeservedly. The Hobbit is going to have this problem. All the things that make the book an amazing experience, like an artifact out of a history of a world barely remembered, will be replaced with the flash and dazzle of CGI, the cheap distillation of characterization that comes from Hollywood's scriptwriters and Hollywood's money, Slapstick will replace wit. Dazzle will replace wonder. Headaches will result.

Fantasy True Fans Agree

Whether Patrick Rothfuss comparing the whole movie-going experience to attending a Live, Nude Hobbit review, or John Kessel auctioning off his curmudgeonly attendance for charity because he expects the whole experience to be miserable and depressing, fantasy authors and thinkers are lining up to be loathe to attend the disaster. A beloved piece of the intellectual history of fantasy fiction will be turned into the sort of cheap, easy pablum of Hollywood marketing fare. It's depressing to witness.

Naturally, it would be different if it were going to be any good. If anyone believed that the film had any sort of potential to be good, considering the populist disaster of the Lord of the Rings and the nonsensical work Peter Jackson has done to date with simply dreadful movies like King Kong, or that ridiculously stupid and depressingly poorly-scripted ghost movie with Michael J. Fox, then we would be ready to go see the film.

We are not.

Remember how fans of Michael Ondaatje's work hated the film that won an Oscar? No? Do you even know what I'm talking about? The English Patient won an Oscar. Watch it again a few years later and realize how poorly the film has aged. The same is true of Lord of the Rings. It's as if the films won an Oscar because Hollywood didn't want to miss out on the next Star Wars franchise. But, the fantasy films are strange and out of place and will not age well when the dazzle of the effects fade out of the technologically-possible, and poor writing and cheesy acting and weak script will shine through the flash.

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