An Unexpected Journey is the first of three movies based on the 1937 book The Hobbit. Released in December 2012, it received mixed reviews with some 65% here and some 58% there.
The movie starts with Bilbo Baggins writing down his adventure while his nephew Frodo tries to see what he’ writing about. The story begins with Bilbo receiving an odd visit from Gandalf, followed by a crazy evening with 13 dwarves. The next day, Bilbo finds himself enrolled in an adventure he definitely wasn’t looking for.
For one single small book to be separated in three movies, you have to expect some added material. For the most part, I’m quite satisfied with how they did the movie. There are many small details that are different from the book, as always, but in this movie you are introduced to two new side stories. One of which we learn near the end of the book, being Gandalf’s errand that he needed to do.
At a certain point in the middle of the book (not in the first movie) Gandalf leaves the dwarves and Bilbo to take care of some business. When he comes back near the end of the book, he tells them he took care of a necromancer. What they decided to do in the movies for more time is show how Gandalf took care of the necromancer.
The other major side-story added to make the movies last longer is Thorin’s history with the white orc. In the books, they just battle normal goblins and the reason why those goblins were chasing them is because the dwarves killed their king. Not because of some personal revenge of a white orc. I understand why they added that in the movie and for the first movie it blends well with the story.
All the other small details that are different from the book aren’t so bad. It’s just tiny stuff like for example at the beginning Gandalf comes back when the dwarves left Bag End to tell Bilbo he’s going to be late for the meeting they mentioned in a letter they left on the mantle (that Bilbo hadn’t seen before Gandalf showed it to him). It’s not details that affect the story too much so I won’t even try to mention them.
Overall I’m quite pleased with how they did the first part of the book. I like that they decided to show us Gandalf’s errand, although we were used to seeing him disappear and not know what he was up to since he almost never talks about his errands in The Lord of the Rings. It’s a nice change.
Until Next Time!
Young Mom ❤