Fili and Kili are more than hotties! They’re integral to the story!

I’d love to have a flashback to Erebor before they set out on the Quest with Dis and Thorin, and Dis absolutely refusing to let them go with their wayward uncle- and Thorin being wary of taking them- but begrudgingly allowing Fili to tag along. Then Kili bursts in and complains about being left behind, and a huge family argument ensuing. For me, Fili has the sense that he’s been on a few journeys, albeit small ones, whilst it seems that this is Kili’s first big adventure. Here we may draw some parallels between him and ‘Mr. Boggins,’ which is why I think they have a good rapport with each other, aside from Kili’s teasing- which may be due to his status as a privileged young dwarf prince. Kili’s relief at seeing Bilbo when he steps of of the woods at the end of the film after being lost is a wonderful moment, as it displays clearly that Kili actually identifies with Baggins- that he still has someone as inexperienced as he is in many ways on the journey with him- and also marks a turning point for many of the dwarves’ view of him- the inspiration he gives to them is evident in Bombur, Balin, Ori and Fili and Kili’s eyes as it pans to them, even if Thorin still cannot see it.

It was exciting for me to see Fili’s pipe design as Fili was smoking before the Battle of Azanulbizar flashback sequence, which is richer than even Thorin’s is- cementing subliminally to the watcher that these dwarves are always going to be of a noticeably higher status than the others in Thorin and Co.- they have the finer things in life, and always have. I think the scene where Fili and Kili were teasing Bilbo about the orc attack at night and Thorin’s reaction to that highlighted his annoyance that sometimes his nephews could take a lot for granted, and this could all be snatched back from them at any point on this quest.

It’s worth noting that Kili has more of an interaction with his uncle than Fili BECAUSE he looks like him- he resembles his mother Dis- Thorin’s sister, whereas Fili resembles his father- who evidently is blonde. I think this is why Thorin identifies and protects young Kili more; we can see this at many points during the film as they are often filmed together- whilst Fili steps back. This is because not only is Kili the rashest of the dwarves with all his young energy bursting out of him and putting him into some dangerous situations, but I think that he reminds Thorin of himself even more so than Fili does- in his manner, in his looks, and being the younger sibling of two brothers. In my novel A Dwarven Love Story: The Beginning (http://archiveofourown.org/works/590184), I made a conscious decision to write Thorin and Frerin’s relationship as mirroring Kili and Fili’s for this reason.

I was also completely heartbroken (in the best way) at the separation they face when in the stone giants scene- completely great to watch, and the expression on their faces say it all. They’re no longer safe traveling together, no matter how much they protect each others’ backs- after Thorin chastises them for joking about orc packs- this is the first danger they’ve experience apart from each other.

I also loved the author’s point in this about there being more weight on Fili’s shoulders with responsibility- and I’d like to see how this plays out more. He certainly seems to be more reserved, and as a better hold on himself than Kili- perhaps he knows to reserve his youthful energy in case his uncle should fall, and he’d have to lead the Quest? Who knows what Thorin and he have discussed.

Something really interesting to note which I hadn’t thought about since I saw it again in 2D last night- my friends said that their relationship really reminded her of Fred and George Weasley’s- which I thought was absolutely brilliant! And…. they really do!

I’m looking forward to seeing how their relationship grows in the coming films, and of course, dreading the final one.

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So… my review of the Hobbit

I’ve seen it twice, and now it’s time to sit down and get my head around what I actually thought of it.

A word of warning- this will NOT be a spoiler-free post.

Ok, so I’m going to do this in a pro-vs-con style thing- but first a summary.

This movie is not, and was not shot, to be LIKE LOTR. The Hobbit is stylistically different, both in shooting style and tone in most places. It’s a film for younger audiences, as the book was intended (but also with material for older, book-learned audiences [me, ahaha]). This contrast worked in a weird way for me- it combined snot and burp gags and the Goblin King singing a wee song, with heavier emphasis on backplot than I was expecting, and heartbreaking foreshadowing moments, as well as the White Council, which I think we will see more of in DOS. Many critics are saying that the movie isn’t as ‘epic’ or ‘fast paced’ as LOTR- and that’s because IT ISN’T! And that’s OK. For me, the time FLEW past, and I was thoroughly ready to carry on the adventure.

So- first the cons!

Some of the CGI work. I’m pretty sensitive to this, and some of the CGI work looked ‘less real’ than the real prosthetics used on LOTR. It’s come a long way, but it’s noticeable in some places, especially in 3D. That being said, this didn’t throw me off too much. I want to see it properly in the IMAX (with that quality but without 48FPS) to really judge. It could have been better, e.g. the wargs, Azog being the main ones. SURPRISINGLY, the goblins were well done! From seeing them on the trailers I was afraid these would be noticeably CGI, but I wasn’t put off by either them or the CGI created Goblin King.

No standout fight scenes. Had there been such, I assume the movie would have stretched into 3+ hours, but I wish we could have seen some cooler moves on display. Though Dori and his whacker-thing was so badass! Also, the comment about CGI again, you could notice the falls/jumps which were added in.

I suppose that because this is such a ‘small’ movie, compared to the epic battle scenes with thousands of CGI created people, it’s much easier to notice the digital effects; compared to LOTR, there are far fewer adversaries for Thorin and Co. to face- a pack of wargs, a rabble of goblins, 3 trolls, that’s about it. On a note- I really liked the troll’s look, CGI wise. As I said, the main one I had a problem with is Azog. For a moment, let’s compare him with prosthetically created Gothmog in ROTK. Gothmog looks much more realistic, and he was done (correct me if wrong) via facial prosthetics. I’m not sure how much prosthetics Manu had, but it seems obviously mostly CGI. I also enjoyed the look of the wargs better in LOTR (Weta didn’t like them).

Do you know what? 48FPS isn’t on my cons list. I did have SOME issues with it- as my friend put it, some shots looked too ‘swoopy’, and ‘videogamey’ but that was it. I LOVED the depth of field and the clarity. From a CGI perspective, it made no difference to the shots, apart from the closeup shots looking a bit ‘realer’ (earthier?) in 24FPS.

Aaaaaaand…. well, that’s it for cons that I can think of…. now onto PROS- of which there are MANY (making this film an overall WINNER!)

  • Acting- brilliant. As said time and time again, Martin Freeman is a brilliant Boggins! Richard Armitage has become Thorin in my mind, and well- I sing the praises of them all.
  • Characterisation- spot on with Thorin. Kudos to the glorious Mr. Armitage and PJ for getting this so damn right. From the arriving late at Bag End (wonderful addition), his relationship with the other dwarves and treatment of Baggins, and the heartbreaking foreshadowing with the Oakenshield (I can rave on about that all day), it was pretty damn perfect. The respect Thorin gains for Bilbo is especially heartbreaking for me. This is probably the last time before his death that Thorin will look at Bilbo in this way- as he starts to get more paranoid over Gandalf, and warier as the quest moves on towards the mountain, eventually losing his mind. The good feelings may rise up again in Dale, but I can’t see any sort of embrace like the sort he gave Baggins on Carrock. Also, I loved how Elrond was in this (I never expected to like him as much as I did!) and I found him a enjoyable addition. And so we move on to….
  • Plot- I actually don’t have ANY comments about the plot. For me, everything fit fine, and had a great narrative. LOVED the emphasis on dwarven history- and I can’t wait for the Extended Editions to come out so we get more stuff (especially more character stuff). Even though I am a lore nerd when it comes to dwarven history (60k word book-centric fanfic holler), I’m far from an elitist. I liked the flow, and the pace felt fine.

Overall- an enjoyable film, and the amount of negative reviews it’s getting suck- and most of the reviewers I want to throw things at. Of course, everyone’s going to judge Weta for the CGI in the film- which is correct- they could have stepped it up, in my opinion- made the textures a little dirtier, seeing as they did Gollum perfectly again. But if I was going to give this film an OVERALL rating? I couldn’t. I NEED ALL OF THEM NOW! I’m pretty excited as the action grows in DoS and TaBA. I think that will silence critics who ‘want more action’ (they’re following the fucking plot guys, jeez!), and give Weta more things to work with rather than trying to make relatively small battle sequences look amazing. It’s no fault of the design- but maybe it could be transferred into film without the bells and whistles?

But for the book fan inside me, the three things that mattered were there- the plot, characterisation and acting. The film critics will critique the film, the oldschool fan… well- I’ll just sit here and sing along to the perfect rendition of ‘Blunt the Knives’.

Quick writing update

Where to cut, where to cut?

It seems that as I add more exciting backstory to my fic, the more I have to chop it up! For the sake of people’s sanity (when I cut it it will probably near a whopping 57k+ words) and my own need to write in stages, I’ve decided to break it now before Thorin settles in Ered Luin, meaning I can safely say I will publish it before the 13th December! It won’t elaborate just yet on the fics I’ve already published to do with this story, but that will come later as I have time to work on it.

I never thought I’d write this much back story for it, which is why I’ve had to change it a lot! This is basically PROLOGUE for what happens, though I hope it is mildly interesting. It will also hopefully garner some feedback I can use before writing Part 2.

I can say this will probaby be a 4-Part long work, so we’re talking about 200k words- longer than The Deathly Hallows! Hopefully I can get it done in a timely manner and be constantly working to write it- I wrote 50k in one month, so I hope I can get roughly one part per 2 months, or I may start to do it by chapters rather than block of fic.

But I hope you enjoy Part 1, and I hope you enjoy the Hobbit!

 

 

An that’s 50k words guys!

An excerpt from the last few hundred words:

…….

‘But you should have seen them when they dragged his sorry person back here,’ breathed Frerin in awe. ‘I don’t think I’ve seen grandfather so angry- and that’s saying something. I thought they were going to get axes out for a moment, but I haven’t seen any blood shed… yet.’

‘That’s horrible, Frerin,’ said Dis with a sniff.

‘So what’s going to happen to him?’ Thorin said, ignoring her comment.

Frerin shrugged, and looked back up at his bedroom, pulling at the thick woolen blanket he’d brought with him against the chill.

‘Don’t know- but I wouldn’t be surprised if grandfather chased him right out of here,’ he said, and yawned. Thorin chewed his lip-

‘Fundin really doesn’t like him, even though he’s his brother,’ he said, and he wondered at this. Surely they must have something they liked about each other. Frerin laughed, and it seemed that it was magnified in the darkness, and Dis shushed him urgently.

……..

Oh whoops so I have put Thorin’s brother in this fic after all.

Sorry Thorin, more heartache for you when he dies.

;_;

I’m doing a Peter Jackson!

Now I know how it feels, Pete- too many ideas you’d be sad to see left out because you have to cut it down to a manageable length.

I’m splitting ADLS into several parts (probably 3!), and I am currently going back and adding a lot more content to Thorin’s history rather than focussing on carrying on with revising my already written chapters (which will come later)- cause you know, if you don’t get the foundations how you want them, the rest of the story needs to be told in a different way. After this happens I’m writing a TEENY bit more content, then cutting it and posting it. Then it’s a wrap for now!

I hope to finish most of it by 1st December in time for the end of NaNoWriMo (I will definitely have done 50k then but as I said before- this is waaaay more than a 50k novel, hence the split), but will aim to get it up before the Hobbit premieres (I’m seeing it on the 12th, and I’ve already changed bits because of the stuff I’ve seen already- noticeably Dwalin and Thorin’s relationship!!).

I’m excited to finish getting the first part of the story EXACTLY how I imagine it- which means adding in one character, clarifying and elaborating a fuck load of stuff through a variety of scenes and re-defining people’s relationships- especially Groin’s role with his brother Fundin and Thrain.

50k on the horizon! I wonder how far I’ll get with my next 5k words! haha