Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Edits, The

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I really enjoyed this edit!
Splitting the story into 5 parts was a great idea.
I don't know what else to say except that this edit is just perfect :D

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Oh yes!
After having the Maple edit for some time, I now got this jewel! As others mentioned before, this will definitively be my go-to version!
It's got great pacing, and while M4's edit is also rather trimmed, this here has more... magic:
It's not purely the book, but only the good ideas were left in from Jackson's original, so you have that grandeur which made LOTR so special without feeling ridiculous or bloated to the max and then some more on top!
It's utterly charming and made me smile several times, so joyful was the ride into Middle-Earth! Everything I read before I watched this edit regarding its strenghts is true. THIS really is what I expected when I went to the movies back then...
Then, there's technically flawless editing from visuals and audio - THANK YOU!!!!

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After the masterpiece that was Peter Jackson's "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, most of us felt less-than-enthusiastic about the final result of the Hobbit Trilogy. And as an owner of the bloated extended edition Blu-Rays, I personally felt like the magic was gone from Jackson's Tolkien vision. The Hobbit was, to me, only slightly better than the Prequel trilogies were to the Star Wars franchise.

With Fanedits, we are often left with "the best that could be managed" with weak source material (again, see the Star Wars prequels). Nothing can turn Hayden Christensen into a great actor or a believable Darth Vader. But unlike the Star Wars prequels, Stromboli Bones has revealed the absolute DIAMOND that was hidden in a chunk of coal.

Excised are the ridiculous elements and the grotesque. The excesses have been trimmed. And what we have left is an absolute worthy prequel to the cinematic masterpiece "The Lord of the Rings."

The Hobbit was Tolkien's foray into writing a story for children, set in the world of Middle Earth he had been developing for decades. "The Lord of the Rings" was a far more adult tale. Literarily, there is a completely different feel between the two masterworks, even though they were penned by the same author. When I originally saw "The Hobbit" in the theaters, there were times I felt it was hard to believe these were taking place in the same world. Thanks to the efforts of Stromboli Bones and the other prior editors who helped contribute to this fanedit, this now FEELS like it should.

The Fellowship of the Ring was released in 2001. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey was released in 2012. A decade is a long time for an actor to return to a role and portray a younger version of themselves. One of good things about this fanedit is that scenes with actors reprising their roles have been trimmed or minimized. Now I am able to enjoy the film without thinking, "Wow, that actor didn't age well" or some other thoughts that take me out of the story.

For all of Peter Jackson's excesses, he at least gave us all the elements of a great film filled with great portrayals and incredible visuals. There was a lot of fat around the meat, but once that fat has been trimmed, you are left with an incredible piece of cinema and that is this fanedit's greatest achievement. Unlike Amazon's "The Rings of Power," the spirit of Tolkien resides within Jackson's "The Hobbit," and through this fanedit, we can see it clearly.

Absolutely BRILLIANT! Bravo!!! Thank you, Stromboli Bones!

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(Updated: September 27, 2022)
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For many of us, Tolkien's "The Hobbit" holds a special place in our hearts. For me, it is *the* book that got me into reading. I was excited when the movies were announced, nervous when production problems were reported, and dismayed at the final product. It is an unwatchable mess. I love sharing with my sons the things with which I grew up. We go go-carting, play old school AD&D, hit up the classic arcade, and listen to real rock 'n roll. It is beyond disappointing that we can't share "The Hobbit."

Until now. M4 Book was my first fan edit experience of "The Hobbit" and it is a fantastic telling. It is *tight.* It ruthlessly excises all the extraneous nonsense from the theatrical films, and is possibly the definitive cut *if you want the most faithful book adaptation possible.*

Therein lies the rub. Book and film are two very different mediums, and what works in one doesn't necessarily work in the other. Also, Tolkien's "on the ground" storytelling sometimes has issues, like too many Deus Ex Machina events. One example would be the arrival of the great eagles at the Battle of the Five Armies. If there's any fault with M4 Book, it's scene duration. They start a beat late, cut a couple of beats in the middle, and end a beat too soon. As I said, this edit is *tight.* It hits the ground running and barely stops to catch a breath.

That's where Stromboli Bones' "The Battle of the Five Edits" really comes into its own. Scenes that are stripped to their core in M4 Book are here fleshed out. The Mirkwood sequence is a good example. Lost from M4 Book is the sense of just how long The Company was in there, and especially the feeling of just how heavy the enchantment was, and how it weighed upon them. Bones restores that, and it's just about spot on.

The Battle of the Five Armies is similar. M4 Book cuts the entire battle down to 20 minutes (in keeping with Bilbo being unconscious for most of it). Bones has it at ~38 minutes, and it does a great job of showing how the battle progresses and why it's important for Thorin to go to Ravenhill. It also fixes some continuity errors, like the sudden re-appearance of Orcrist in Thorin's hands.

Also of note is that Bones' re-uses editor Adam Dens' cut of the united Dwarf & Elf army vs the Orc army initial clash, getting rid of the horrific nonsense of the Elves leaping over Dwarven phalanx.

I don't think it's perfect, but barring my own masterful cut (rofl) seeing the light of day, this is the version I'm sharing with my sons.

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I enjoyed this so much! The cutting of the story into 5 parts was a good creative choice. It made it flow so well.

As I was watching I realized that I didn't even notice much of the stuff that was cut out, for example, I was well into it before I realized the entire Erabor prologue was gone. It flowed so naturally.

The edits and sound were clean, and there were a couple really satisfying musical changes towards the end. This will be how I watch The Hobbit from here on out.

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