Adapted, produced, but not directed by Peter Jackson (The Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Hobbit mega-series) – that honor (assuming it’s an actual honor) goes to longtime Jackson collaborator and visual effects man Christian Rivers – Mortal Engines, a steampunk Mad Max meets Star Wars (all of them) crossed with The Terminator sci-fi tale that unfolds in a wholly absurd, post-apocalyptic future, earns the no longer rare distinction of being both a franchise starter and a franchise ender rolled up into one disappointing package. An overlong, over-loud, derivative revenge-plot occasionally elevated by semi-inventive production design and semi-convincing CG, Mortal Engines was made for the long forgotten and currently non-existent fans of Philip Reeve’s 2001 YA novel, the first in a quartet that obviously piqued Jackson’s desire to find another potentially profitable, spectacle-driven sci-fi or fantasy series. Apparently, though, someone forgot to tell Jackson or his legion of collaborators at WETA digital and elsewhere. (more…)
In a year that can most charitably be described as “complicated”, some of us may be struggling to come up with things to be thankful for this holiday. But rest assured that there’s always one thing guaranteed to reinvigorate your faith in your fellow man: the sight of two nerds joyously nerding out over some nerdy, nerdy stuff. That’s most definitely the case in this new video from Tested, in which Mythbuster’s Adam Savage drools delightfully over the treasures in Peter Jackson’s abundant cave of movie props and memorabilia.
There’s been a long standing rumor that David Bowie once auditioned for a role Peter Jackson‘s Lord Of The Rings Trilogy. Which role changes with each telling, but now Dominic Monaghan, who played the hobbit Merry, has added his story to the mix. While it does confirm that Bowie auditioned, it still leaves up in the air which role he was up for. (more…)
Peter Jackson is bringing his Hobbit trilogy back to theaters this October in a three-day event that will feature the extended version of each film in three successive days. Fathom Events is partnering with Warner Bros. to bring the event to AMC theaters around the United States. Want to know where and when? (more…)
It was very sad news yesterday when it was revealed that Christopher Lee had passed away. The iconic actor had more than 280 roles to his name in a career that spanned 67 years with parts on TV, in movies, and for video games. Part of Lee’s continued popularity in recent years was his appearance in Middle Earth films directed by Peter Jackson, in which he played the wizard Saruman the White, so you can imagine that the filmmaker would have a very emotional reaction to such an important key to his films succeeding passing away. Indeed, Jackson posted a very touching tribute to Lee, and how much the actor’s involvement in the Lord of the Rings series meant to him over the years. (more…)
And by the way, don’t point out the irony of hating franchises after completing two movie trilogies because Peter Jackson‘s already aware of that! Yeah, this is something that Jackson said in a recent interview while promoting the third film in The Hobbit trilogy, and the sixth Middle Earth film overall, The Battle of the Five Armies. Considering that Jackson owns a pretty big share of the credit for the Hollywood obsession with huge franchise pictures with big budgets and bigger box office, his comments are either bold self-examination, or hypocritical B.S. from someone who’s sold out and has too many regrets to allow himself to be able to live with them, so he’s spreading the guilt around. Either way, yes, The Hobbit director now says that franchises are ruining the business. Deal with it. (more…)
The final installment of the Hobbit trilogy, The Battle of the Five Armies, has finally hit the U.S. theaters, and Peter Jackson has been doing the rounds to promote the movie, however, that’s not all he’s been talking about. It’s no secret that The Hobbit movies have received their fair share of criticism for myriad reasons; but one of the most ubiquitous critiques, has been Jackson‘s heavy reliance on CGI effects, as opposed to the practical effects that he used in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. However, coming off the back of these criticisms, Jackson has been ruffling feathers in the contemporary movie-making world with his critique on the state of the industry today; the Hollywood zeitgeist if you like, and it’s all rather dumbfounding indeed. (more…)
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies opens where The Desolation of Smaug left off, as the powerful dragon of the Lonely Mountain (still voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch) descends on Lake-town for payback. To say that Peter Jackson captures the full horror and insanity of a dragon attack on a compact and inclosed area is something of an understatement, and you practically feel the pain and panic as Smaug’s attack lights up the entire town in seconds and doesn’t let up. But then, Bard (Luke Evans) heroically slays the dragon using the final black arrow, and Smaug is defeated. Ten minutes into the movie.
Pacing has always been a problem for The Hobbit movies, as you can well imagine if you’re creating an expansive seven-and-a-half hour movie trilogy based on a single 300-page book and some supplementary material. The previous film ended with a powerful “Oh $#!%” moment went Smaug leaves Bilbo (Martin Freeman) in the mountain to attack the people of Lake-town in retaliation for them giving aid to the Company of 13 Dwarves and their quest to take back Erebor. Dramatically, it was sound, but to use a comparison to The Lord of the Rings it would be as if The Two Towers were to end right before Aragorn and the others at Helms Deep ride out to meet the Orcs in battle for a last stand. It’s evidence of the fact that while Jackson has grown to handle well the overwhelming technical demands of the project, he’s lost sight of the best way to tell the story he wants to tell. (more…)
Having spent the best part of 15 years in Middle-earth filming six films, it’s easy to see how Peter Jackson will be having a hard time saying goodbye to J.R.R. Tolkien‘s world of hobbits, dragons, elves, orcs and the magical world of Middle-earth. However it turns out that Jackson may be suffering to let go; harboring a ‘never-say-never’ complex, which is further testament of his reluctance so say good-bye to the franchise completely. (more…)
Our friends at Screen Junkies have submitted another entry in their ongoing Honest Trailer YouTube series. This time, they breath their fiery verbal quips and cynicism onto The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. Before you say goodbye to Middle Earth with The Battle of the Five Armies, relive The Desolation of Smaug, the bloated second chapter in Peter Jackson’s mercilessly long Hobbit trilogy. (more…)