November 22, 2018
Like any other edit from TM2YC, this edit is of excellent quality in both video and audio. The color grading makes every frame look like a sketch taken from a book. And if you know the editing style of TM2YC - he will salvage the most out of any movie, only removing and trimming the most unnecessary stuff. This edit is no different. There's a lot of impressive edits here, big and small, that make the movie better.
TM2YC's goal here was to remove the overabundance of silliness that was present in the original motion picture. First and foremost: Radagast's rabbit sledge.
Personally, out of all the silly material in the Hobbit movies, the sledge bothered me the least. However, it was a nice and interesting new way to experience the movie. I really loved how the Warg chase played out without Radagast. Furthermore, the Radagast flashback was very well done. I've seen this sort of flashback edit been done before, but usually it's only a glimpse of Radagast handing Gandalf the Morgul blade, not an entire conversation. I cannot speak praise about this edit without mentioning the very impressive escape from Goblin town sequence. Masterfully done work.
When Bilbo first unseaths his newly received blade, it now glows blue (...which means you know what is near), yet his expression is that of an awe, not dread. So, it was a bit weird, but it worked for the narrative and I cannot say it was a big deal for me.
A bigger deal for me was the very last bit of the Goblin town escape - The dead Goblin king falling on top of the Dwarves - I sincerely believe this could have been easily cut and the movie would have been better for it.
The thing that took me out of the movie the most was the stone giants - way over the top. After they survived that encounter, I felt like they are all invincible and cannot be harmed. I seriously didn't fear for them when they reached Goblin town. Also, Bilbo wakes up and plans to head back when he just survived that... highly unlikely.
After seeing Adam Dens' edit, I realised that keeping the stone giants but removing them being on one also works well. Though, I prefer them gone for good.
I respect TM2YC's editing choices in this movie - he made a cut that works for him and that he can enjoy, but I want to share what further edits I would have done to increase my enjoyment of this movie:
* More cuts to Radagast. Especially, when he is healing the hedgehog and crosses his eyes, murmuring his spells. I actually think I would not have shown him being successful at healing the hedgehog - wicked, I know. But, it would have implied that a very powerful dark magic is at work and Radagast is not strong enough to face it.
* Remove stone giants or at least trim the over the top bits out of that sequence.
* Remove Goblin king falling on top of the Dwarves. Perhaps, I'd go even further and cut back to Bilbo even before the face off between Gandalf and the great Goblin - the latter just looked too scared of Gandalf and his sword when he first saw him. But, if you believe he deserves a proper exit - keep it in. Cut the fall, though.
* I agree with showing riddles in the dark before the Dwarves enter Goblin town, but I didn't like how we cut from Bilbo and the Goblin falling to immediately Bilbo waking up. I would have focused on the Goblin being dragged by Gollum and only afterwards show Bilbo waking up. This will also solve the confusion regarding whether or not Bilbo saw Gollum losing the ring.
Other minor edits I would have loved to see, based on Arkenstone edition, that did not affect my enjoyment of the movie and my rating of it:
* Make Gandalf instead of saying "The blade is made by the Elves, which means it will glow blue when Orcs or Goblins are nearby" to say "The blade is made by the Elves. It will glow blue when Orcs or Goblins are nearby" when referring to Sting.
* Remove any mention of the Trolls' names.
* Use the score originally intended for Thorin vs. Azog and the eagles sequences. The heroic Nazgul theme when Thorin charges is kinda weird.
All in all, another solid edit of An Unexpected Journey. Highly recommended.