If there is one thing that I find very annoying its when.
The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug
ends on an even more surprising and disappointing note than the previous sentence. Any sense of satisfaction or conclusive contentment is totally destroyed when the credits abruptly roll. However, that is not to say that the journey was totally wasted.
The film is at its best when it is steeped fully in the fantastical. When the protagonists are surrounded by orcs, spider monsters and shape shifters is when the creativity and personality of the source material, “The Hobbit” really comes through.
Equally interesting is the variety of locations that are visited. Specifically Laketown and the Elfin realm are truly enthralling places and feauture some of the most beautiful and locations in the series’ history. The pacing of the film is also expertly devised. Although not much happens plot-wise, the film itself tricks you into thinking it’s an action-packed blockbuster. Ultimately the two hour and 40 minute film never goes on too long and certainly doesn’t bore.
Ian Mckellen is once again the standout actor as Gandalf the Grey. No one else could possibly fill the role as competently or passionately as Mckellen. Mckellen’s air of presence he gives in each shot is unmistakable.
Unfortunately however, the film never escalates to feeling like anymore than the middle entry in a trilogy. It is a placeholder and a filler, waiting for the climactic third film coming next year that actually looks to wrap up this extended plot.