Early reviews of The Hobbit are in and it seems like it might come up a little short. I briefly glanced at a number of reviews that found The Hobbit’s pace a little slow and its 48 frames per second a little off-putting.
Finding out that The Hobbit might not be that good is like finding out Jonah was a pretty bad guy or that there wasn’t going to be a flannel graph story in Sunday school.
I don’t want The Hobbit to disappoint me.
Obviously the better parts of me know that I shouldn’t place my hope in anything but Christ because he never disappoints. But the nerdier parts of me that have been looking forward to The Hobbit for years are placing my hope in Peter Jackson and his ability to tell stories of Middle-Earth better than anyone else.
A lot of the criticism over The Hobbit has to do with its presentation in 48 frames per second. Most movies are presented in 24fps but Jackson made the decision to film The Hobbit in 48fps. Reviewers have made these complaints about the enhanced frame rate:
“It felt like watching daytime soaps in HD, terrible BBC broadcasts, or Faerie Tale Theater circa 1985, only in amazingly sharp clarity and with hobbits.” – Movieline
“When people run, they look like they are on the ‘Benny Hill Show.'” – Screencrush
“Everything takes on an overblown, artificial quality in which the phoniness of the sets and costumes becomes obvious, while well-lit areas bleed into their surroundings, like watching a high-end home movie.” – Variety
I had planned on seeing The Hobbit in 48fps but after these reviews I might stick with a good old fashioned 24fps, 2D viewing.
Movie critics, however, are paid to be critical. Critiquing a movie is much different from simply watching a movie for pleasure. I’m no movie critic so I’m sure I’ll be able to simply sit and enjoy the beginning of Bilbo’s unexpected journey.
If I don’t, though, perhaps I can console myself with an epic flannel graph showdown between David and Goliath.
Have the early negative reviews tempered your excitement for The Hobbit?