So I have a unique perspective when it comes to watching this edit. My grandpa gave me his extended copies of LOTR and The Hobbit to watch for the first time. I spent 11 hours watching LOTR for the first time and they were very long but enjoyable. However, I was told by others after I had finished it, The Hobbit was a bit of a mess and someone suggested looking up a fan edit of it to save time. I then come across this cut and after considering the two that are here on IFDB, I decided to watch this version and I have to say, it felt very seamless and not bloated at all. The episodic format especially helped give me a bit of breathing room as the LOTR extended versions I couldn't find a good place to stop. I would even say it is pretty close to the quality of the LOTR trilogy as best as it could and I highly recommend this edit to anyone interested. I will be saving this copy and even share it with my grandpa when we I get the chance.
As others have already said - this is probably the best way to watch Hobbit movies. It concentrates primarily on Bilbo and Dwarves and cuts out most of the other plotlines, from which the movies only benefits. As far as i can tell, visual/audio quality has been superb every second of it. Editing is very smooth and feels like it has been done by a real professional. The source material itself however is not even remotely in the same league as LotR trilogy, so naturally there are things that even the best of the fanedits cannot fix, but overall this is definitely deserves the praise.
Attempting to reimagine the Hobbit franchise into something stomachable has become a favourite pastime of various editors in recent years, spawning dozens upon dozens of edits over the years. The original films were a bloated mess overall, with any scene of notable quality being crushed flat under the weight of the surrounding trilogy's endless cavalcade of shoehorned b-plots, excessive CGI, and a main character who gets little overshadow somehow.
With those past flaws in mind, I am happy to report that the work Stromboli has done here is nothing short of extraordinary. By mixing the narrative structuring, editing techniques, and CGI touch-ups of a variety of editors (including his own important additions) into a cohesive whole, he has managed to make an episodic version of the Hobbit which surpasses the original in every conceivable way.
The audio and visual quality were superb, with the editing somehow being rarely noticeable in spite of the sheer complexity of the cuts.
The narrative of this cut never fully breaks its own internal logic at any obvious point, managing to be mostly book accurate while also not being afraid to flesh out action sequences/characters if it improves the series. The elimination of so many problem plot-lines/characters/scenes without losing any vital information is both a testament to the skill of the edit and how much useless filler was stuffed into the trilogy.
Finally, the pacing of the edit was a notable highlight. The only time I felt it drag a bit was during the titular final battle, but even then it still blows the original pacing away. Overall, the pacing made the action set pieces of each episode much more enjoyable.
I would recommend this to just about anyone who likes fantasy shows. One last note: there is a plethora of audio/visual quality options to choose from for this edit if your particular about that and have the space for it. Thanks for the edit Stromboli!
This was an excellent edit! It felt like a super fun mini series version of The Hobbit, highlighting what worked in the original films: the excellent cast, costumes, music, effects, and sets; and cutting out the gratuitous elements: Legolas running up falling bricks, the Tauriel love triangle, and most importantly Azog--I really appreciated how cleanly this edit removed Azog as a named and backstoried villain without compromising the final fight between Azog and Thorin. The episodic structure worked well too, emphasizing the different structure of The Hobbit as compared with The Lord of the Rings. What I was especially looking out for was the Battle of Five Armies, since this was something that various edits I've seen have handled with the widest degree of variance. What I appreciated here was how Fili's death gave Thorin's final fight with the now unnamed lead orc (previously Azog) impact despite the two of them having no other backstory together, and too I appreciated that in this edit Kili got to go on a little revenge killing spree before he too was brought down.
I would certainly recommend this edit and will be watching it during my LotR marathons!
As I am writing this the last scene, of the last part of the edit is playing and my eyes are wet, my throat has a lump in it, and I have goose bumps on my scalp. The Lord of the Rings, in its conclusion, would bring this emotion up in myself. Never before has The Hobbit been able to cause my heart to swell like this. Jesus, I have watched this movie over the last two (2) days and am so damned upset it is over.
Ok, let me pull myself together. This is a masterpiece. I love this movie. It all works. A lot was removed from the original films, and based on what is left, it should never have been there. I blasted...are you frickin' kidding me?!? I just got it together, the credits are rolling and now Billy Boyd is coming through my speakers singing "The Last Goodbye." ... ... ... I am going to try this again. I initially blasted Peter Jackson for The Hobbit. Then I read about how the production went and all the issues with time, money, and the studio. I realized it wasn't his fault. He did the best he could with what he had. After watching this I see poured his special kind of magic in to these movies as much as he did for LotR. It was just hidden beneath all the "extra". Without pale orcs, inter-species romances, and innumerable extraneous scenes there is an absolutely brilliant movie here.
The sound, the video, the narration, and the enjoyment are perfect. Ok, I know if I go digging I could find SOMETHING I could critique but I am not going to do that. This is it, this the seminal version of this movie. I think it is fitting as such. This edit is a compilation of primarily five (5) major edits and then the editor decided parts of two (2) other edits were needed as well. I can not imagine the number of hours and work went in to making this movie. Considering the total hours used between the eight (8) editors, including the one who wove them together, it makes perfect sense that this would be the result. This feels like someone's life's work and considering the cumulative effort that was put in, it might as well have been.
Let me be clear, I don't care if you like The Hobbit, or Lord of the Rings, or even JRR Tolkien's work; if you like high fantasy in any way shape or form, do yourself a favor and watch this film. I just restarted the credits because I just want to bask in the ambiance of this movie just a little longer...
Thank you Spence, Dustin Lee, L8wtr, Adam Dens, DonKamillo, Wraith, and M4 for all the time and effort you took in making your edits. Stromboli Bones I thank you for having the vision to weave all their respective projects in to a seamless masterpiece. Kudos to you all.