The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (Review)

FiveArmies

This is a spoiler free review!

I wanted to like this movie. I really did. But in the end, it all seemed very… well… meh. A mediocre movie wrapped up in a glittery package of epic fantasy battles and amazing CGI. I didn’t dislike it, don’t get me wrong. But it wasn’t anything amazing, either.

Meh

My biggest complaint with Battle of the Five Armies is that, for a movie that went out of its way to add more female characters, it had some pretty sexist moments. Tauriel had potential, but… in the end, she had no character autonomy. At all. There were moments when she tried to rebel and leave Thranduil, but in the end, it never actually worked without Legolas’s help. And her “big”, “defining” moment had no more impact on the film than the rest of her character. But enough about Tauriel. There were other female characters in the movie, right? Bard’s two daughters were also pretty frustrating. They ran around screaming and needed their brother’s help to protect them, even though he presumably has no more weapons training than them.

From a feminist perspective, there were probably two redeeming features to the story. First, there is a pretty awesome moment when Galadriel kicks some Nazgûl butt. It’s a pretty brief scene, but also totally awesome. The second is that, although the men try to send the women and children to safety at some point during the battle (I say ‘some point’ because the battle encompassed pretty much the entire movie and it all blurred together in my head), but the women are like “Heck no! We’re going to stay and help!”. So that was cool.

But really? No matter how cool those two scenes were, the movie was most definitely not feminist, and that’s disappointing. It could have been. It really could have been. Why not let Tauriel have a bigger effect on the story? Or maybe (heaven forbid) Bard could have been a woman in the movie. It isn’t like they didn’t already massively change the story in the movie from that in the book, and making Bard a woman would add a pretty major female character (with a much larger impact on the story than Tauriel). A real, actual, strong female character (which Tauriel is not). Or some of the dwarves could have been women. Or both!

But I digress.

FeministRants

The movie itself was… decent. It seemed really disjointed, and badly structured as well. Smaug was defeated much too quickly (like, ten minutes into the movie), and I feel like it would have been better to just get rid of him in Desolation of Smaug, then focus this movie on the battle.

Battle of the Five Armies didn’t feel like a movie in itself at all, really. I think it would definitely work better when combined with the other movies. It’s a conclusion, not a story.

Also, just out of curiosity, what happened to the Arkenstone? It was such a major part of the first quarter or so of the movie, and played a huge part in the trilogy overall, yet… it’s totally forgotten after the battle. We never find out what happens to it. The Arkenstone was a plot device, kinda like the eagles- it shows up conveniently, plays its part, and then disappears.

Meh2

I think Legolas was one of the best parts of the movie. He did… you know, typical Legolas stuff. Like, say, stabbing a troll in the head with his sword and then riding it around the battlefield, using the sword (still stuck in said troll’s head) to steer. You know. That kind of stuff.

Legolas

Okay, but seriously now. Martin Freeman and Richard Armitage’s acting was also great, and that also really improved my opinion of Battle of the Five Armies. Say what you want about the story itself, but the acting was well done.

But seriously. There were some really great moments between Thorin and Bilbo, whether you interpret it platonically or romantically.

But, I mean, overall…

SuperMeh

A mediocre ending to a good trilogy. I’d give it about 3.5/10.

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INTJ

First off, before we get started here, I’d like to shove you in the general direction of gently nudge you toward the new page I created on my current WIP novel.

And now that you’ve done that (You have, right? Thanks. You’re an awesome human being. High five!), on to the actual post. Basically, I’m going to list a few characters who supposedly share my personality type and my thoughts on them and our similarities (because I like making lists).
If you want to try this, you can take the test here and find the character list here.

Brief summary of my type (INTJ): INTJs are clever, analytical, pragmatic and logical, and are not scared to tell someone (or themselves) when they’re being stupid. They emphasize efficiency, making them simultaneously loners and excellent leaders.

Batman from DC Comics
As you probably already know, I’m not a huge DC fan and I really don’t know enough about him to judge my thoughts on this one, but hey, I’m Batman!

Ebeneezer Scrooge from A Christmas Carol
Um I really don’t think so but oookay? Maybe I can see him being an INTJ, but I’m still not really very much like him.

Four (Tobias Eaton) from Divergent
I haven’t read Divergent yet but I’m going to file this away for future reference.

Some Incarnations of the Doctor from Doctor Who
That’s not very helpful. Maybe if I knew which ones it was talking about? Twelve, I suppose?

Severus Snape and Lord Voldemort from Harry Potter
NOPE. Voldemort isn’t an INTJ.  I can say that for a fact. I mean, those long “I’m going to gloat and rant about you before I kill you” speech he does every time he gets his hand on Harry isn’t very “clever, pragmatic, and logical” of him, is it? Maybe I can go with Snape. But not Voldemort.

Marvin the Paranoid Android from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
AHAHAHA My life is complete. I am Marvin the Paranoid Android. I guess I can maybe see a tiny bit of a resemblance? Maybe?

Smaug from The Hobbit
Why yes I do have a nasty habit of hoarding treasure. This is turning into less of a “deep thoughts on my similarities to the characters” and more of a sarcastic commentary.

Amon from The Legend of Korra
WOAH OKAY let’s take a detour and talk about storylines that don’t live up to their potential, yes? Because Amon and the Equalists had a lot of wasted potential. When they were first introduced, I had kind of expected them to be more of a metaphor for other real life equal rights movements. But then the show kind of brushed them off as being bad guys who think that the Benders are privileged even though they aren’t. I felt like the storyline would have been a lot more interesting if it were more about Korra questioning the world as she knew it, and who was right- the Benders or the Equalists. If that makes any sense? Anyway. Back on track.

Scar from The Lion King
Why am I always the bad guy? Geez.

Loki from the Marvel Cinematic Universe
Um, yeah, I can agree with that one, actually. Even though he’s a villain.

Tiana from The Princess and the Frog
YES AN AWESOME AND AMBITIOUS DISNEY LADY! AND SHE’S NOT A VILLAIN!

Professor James Moriarty and Sherlock Holmes from Sherlock Holmes
Annnnd another villain.

Khan from Star Trek: Into Darkness
First Sherlock, and now Khan. I’m sensing a pattern here.

So basically a short list of villains, with a few heroes and more sympathetic villains scattered in between. And I must say, I like a lot of the characters on this list.

Quarterly Rewind: Spring 2014

So, hi guys! It’s me again, believe it or not. Sorry for the lack of posts lately! I’ve had a really hard time coming up with ideas for posts lately, but hopefully I’m back now. Keep an eye out for my review of Ash by Malinda Lo, as it should be coming soon!
Favorite Quote From A Book I Read This Spring
“I got to thinking that poems were like people. Some people you got right off the bat. Some people you just didn’t get- and never would.”
-Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, by Benjamin Sáenz
This Spring In One Word
Busy!
Most Popular Review This Spring
The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer
Top Two Books I Read This Spring
  1. Ash, by Malinda Lo. I haven’t even finished it yet, but gosh, this book is amazing. Queer protagonists! Fairy tale style storytelling (in a YA book)! What’s not to like?
  2. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. METAPHORS! Metaphors everywhere!

Two Things I’m Looking Forward To This Summer
  1. Horseback riding. I’m doing a summer camp, so that’ll be fun. Even if it’ll be really hot out.
  2. Guardians of the Galaxy comes out on August 1st! I can’t wait!

Three New Obsessions This Spring
  1. Comic books. I still haven’t read that many, but the ones I have read, I’ve loved.
  2. Renaissance-era stuff. My school is doing a renaissance fair next year, so I’ve been doing a lot of research.
  3. Polyvore, a new favorite website of mine. Which is weird. I’ve never really been into fashion. Even if it’s fandom related.

Most Popular Three Blog Posts Overall This Spring
Three Posts I Loved On Other Blogs This Spring
Three Things That Happened This Spring
  1. I’ve branched out in my reading interests a bit. I’ve started reading a lot more historical fiction, queer fiction, and comic books lately.
  2. I was REALLY busy in May. I had a horse show and two big school events. It was fun, though.
  3. I volunteered to help teach a book club at school next year with a few friends!

Six Songs That I Listened To Far Too Often This Spring
  1. Cassandra’s Waltz, from the Doctor Who soundtrack. It’s so lovely and sci-fi sounding at the same time.
  2. New Year’s Day, by U2. I don’t know what it is about this song, but I love it.
  3. New Soul, by Yael Naim. Which is weird. This is more my mom’s kind of music (I usually don’t listen to upbeat songs), but… I like it.
  4. Nobody but Me, by Save Ferris.
  5. Warg Scouts, from the An Unexpected Journey soundtrack. This one is great for writing action scenes to.
  6. I Can See the Light from Tangled.

Thoughts on ‘Fangirling’

Fangirl

Noun; fan-girl

Informal, derogatory; An obsessive female fan

Some people would call me a fangirl. Most, actually. Why? I’m a girl, and I enjoy nerd culture.

But why does that make me a fangirl?

And why is okay to be a fangirl, but not a geek girl?

After all, ‘geek girls’ are being called out today, for cosplaying and wearing the costumes that the very men shaming them designed.

Yet nobody is calling out the thousands of ‘fangirls’. Why?

Because it’s okay to idolize an actor for his portrayal of a character in a movie or TV show that happens to belong to nerd culture.

But enjoying the actual comics? Or the movie, simply for its quality? Or cosplaying your favorite character?

No. That’s not okay, in today’s society

And that needs to change.

Because it’s okay to like an actor. Being a fangirl is just fine. But it’s not okay to also enjoy nerd culture for something other than certain British men.

And that’s just wrong.

Now, why do people assume that any girl who enjoys nerd culture is a fangirl?

Am I, a teenage girl, incapable of enjoying something, simply for its content?

No. I’m not.

Maybe I do on occasion think ‘Oh. He’s cute.”

But I’m not a fangirl, and I’m sure there are plenty of other people like me.

People who are sick of being stereotyped because of the things they enjoy.

Quarterly Rewind- Winter 2014

So, I got this idea from nevillegirl at Musings From Neville’s Navel. Basically, it’s a meme going over the events of the past couple of months.

It’s hard to believe that winter is over, isn’t it? And I’ll be turning fourteen in a couple of days. Weird.


So. On to the meme.


Image From This Winter

A photo taken during photography class at my school.
Favorite Quote From A Book I Read This Winter
“In the end, all it takes is one small action, by one person. One at a time.” 
-Ghost Hawk, By Susan Cooper


17170557
1. The Neptune Project, by Polly Holyoke. It quickly became one of my new favorite books. I love the characters, the story, and the writing.
My birthday! No. Okay. Um. Seriously.
First of all, the new X-Men movie, Days of Future Past. And Muppets Most Wanted. Honestly, it seems like all the best movies are coming out this year. I’m so excited!
Second… let’s see. I’m going on a school camping trip; that should be fun, as I haven’t been tent camping in a while now.
Disney. After Frozen came out, I’ve been totally hooked on Disney. Remember how I was mentioning adding ‘yet another fandom’ to the list? Well, here’s another one. Give me a year and I’ll be a sobbing wreck from all the feels.
Third. Let’s see. Looking at FitzSimmons stuff on Pintrest because even though I don’t watch Agents of SHIELD it’s one of the bestest ships ever.
This Winter In One Word
Fast. The year has been going by much too quickly for me.
Most Popular Review This Winter
The Neptune Project, by Polly Holyoke.
Top Two Books I Read This Winter


2. Shada, by Gareth Roberts. It’s like high-end Doctor Who fanfiction, plus it retains the trademark humor of Douglas Adams.
Two Things I’m Looking Forward To This Spring



Three New Obsessions This Winter
Marvel superheroes- the movies and occasionally the comics. I’ve never really been into superheroes before, but lo and behold. Here I am, a newly coined True Believer. Yet another fandom to add to my list.


Five Things That Happened This Winter
Hmm. Let me see.

I started a new novel, which I may or may not write a post about sometime in the near future.I downloaded the free trial of Scrivener, which I may or may not decide to use. I realized that my decision about which high school I want to go to will be a lot harder than I originally thought. I joined Pintrest and went crazy with it. And I learned the basics of html coding and css.

Three Songs That I Listened To Far Too Often This Winter
Let It Go, from Frozen. It’s perfect stress relief, and always manages to make me feel better.

Plus, it’s just plain awesome.



New Year’s Day, by U2. I just discovered U2 on my iPod, and I love it. It’s quickly made a place on my list of favorite music.

Eleanor Rigby, by the Beatles. It’s so sad. But as Sally Sparrow so wisely put it, “Sad is happy for deep people.”




The Song of the Lonely Mountain, by Neil Finn. It’s so beautiful and rather haunting.



So, I think that’s about it.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Review

Oh. My. Goodness.

**Spoilers Ahead**

I went to see the DoS yesterday, and… gosh. I don’t know what to say. First and foremost, I didn’t write the review yesterday because all I would’ve been able to do was squeal about how amazing it was.

And I’m going to try not to do that today, but I’m not promising you anything 😉

Let’s start with… the acting.

Oh my gosh. The acting was amazing.

Martin Freeman did a wonderful job as Bilbo, same as the first movie.

And Benedict Cumberbatch as Smaug?

His voice was so filtered that I could hardly recognize it, but gosh it was creepy. Almost as creepy as Sherlock when he’s mad.

And then Evangeline Lilly as Tauriel.

She did an amazing job, I must say, especially considering the fact that I originally hated the idea of adding in her and Legolas. But now, I’m not so sure. I was quite pleased with her character.

Except for one teeny, tiny thing.

The Kili/Legolas love triangle.

I’m perfectly fine with Peter Jackson adding in Tauriel for some female representation. I mean, goodness, look at this chart.

Tolkein really could have a done a much better job with adding more female characters, which is one reason why I liked the addition of Tauriel.

But now that I’ve seen the movie, I’ve realized that even though she did get some really cool fight scenes, she was added more for the romance than anything else.

Why can’t we just get an awesome female character without romance and love triangles in the background?

As Evangeline Lily herself said,

“Because The Hobbit was my favorite book as a little girl, and the Silvan Elves were my favorite characters in the book, it would be a dream come true to play one, I agreed very quickly. And then they said to me, ‘Your character’s not in the book.’ And I took great pause as a great fan of Tolkien. I kind of gulped and went, ‘Whaaaat? Everyone’s going to hate me.’
At that moment when [Boyens] said there was a love story, I agreed to the job under one condition. One condition. And they agreed to the condition, and it was in place for two years. The condition was: I will not be involved in a love triangle. (“It’s true,” Boyens confirms). Because any of you who are fans of Lost — I had it up to here with love triangles.”
So now I’m going to stop ranting about the love triangle, because I really honestly did love the movie overall.

Most of the things they changed from the canon, I liked. 

I didn’t mind the fact that Bard was a peasant instead of the leader of Laketown because I feel that it enforced the entire theme of the LotR trilogy- that small people can do great things. 

I liked how they began to show Bilbo’s growing attachment to the Ring, something that never really happened in the book.


I honestly did love Tauriel’s character, and I still think she’s an awesome.

And overall, the movie was totally AMAZING.

Rating: 8.5/10

I really should be wrapping this up now, so bye, everyone!

Oh, and as a side note, all my really old posts containing nothing but pictures have been deleted. If you really want to see those pics, most of ’em are on my Pintrest page, which is linked from the sidebar.

Lists

I’ve realized that my posts on here leave much to be desired. I created this blog intending it to be a place for me to share my thoughts, but I’ve realized that, when I post on here, it tends to be just a collection of Doctor Who/ Sherlock/ Harry Potter pics. Therefore, I’ve decided to make 3 changes to this blog, starting today.
1. I’ll try to post at least once a week (Note the word try. I’ll be homeschooled this year, so I’ll be working much harder.)
2. My posts will (almost) always have some… substance? Is that the word for it? I won’t just be posting random pics anymore.
3. I’ll post for a wider audience. It won’t all be Doctor Who/ Sherlock/ Harry Potter themed (Although you can expect quite a few of Doctor Who/ Sherlock/ Harry Potter themed posts, still)
Now, for today’s post. 🙂 I got this from Musing From Neville’s Navel, and although I hope to do some better posts later on, here it is.

Top 5 Favorite Animated Movies
  1. How to Train Your Dragon
  2. Up
  3. The Pirates
  4. Finding Nemo
  5. Brave
Top 5 Favorite Superhero Movies
  1. Avengers
  2. That’s pretty much the only superhero movie I’ve seen…
  3. So…
  4. Same here.
  5. And her
Top 5 Favorite Comedies
  1. Elf
  2. Muppets From Space
  3. Anything Muppets, actually
  4. The Princess Bride
  5. I’m not sure what else to put here, actually.
Top 5 Favorite Movies as a Kid
  1. Finding Nemo
  2. Milo and Otis
  3. Babe
  4. The Aristocats
  5. Anything with lots of talking animals
5 Worst Movies EVER
  1. Alpha and Omega
  2. Star Wars III: Revenge of the Sith
  3. Star Wars I: The Phantom Menace
  4. Star Wars II: The Clone Wars
  5. The Lion King (Although I did like the music)
Top 5 Book-to-Movie Adaptations
  1. The Fellowship of the Ring
  2. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
  3. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part I
  4. The Return of the King
  5. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Top 5 Movies You Were Most Excited to See in Theaters
  1. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
  2. Harry Potter and the Half- Blood Prince
  3. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part I
  4. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II
  5. Hmmm… I can’t really think of any more.
Top 5 Cutest Animals in Movies/ TV Shows
  1. The Ewoks from Star Wars
  2. Adipose from Doctor Who
  3. Doug from Up
  4. Toothless from How to Train Your Dragon
  5. Did I mention the Adipose?
Top 5 Favorite Actors/Actresses (in terms of acting)
  1. Martin Freeman (The Hobbit/ Sherlock/ The Pirates)
  2. David Tenant (Doctor Who/ The Pirates/ Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire)
  3. Catherine Tate (Doctor Who)
  4. Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock)
  5. Hmm… I can’t think of anyone else. Maybe Billie Piper from Doctor Who?
Top 5 Favorite Actors That Bring Out Your Inner Fangirl
  1. I don’t fangirl.
  2. I like actors for their skill, that’s it.
  3. Got it?
  4. Same here
  5. And here
Top 5 Favorite TV Shows
  1. Doctor Who
  2. Sherlock
  3. Merlin
  4. Wolverine and the X-Men
  5. The Ultimate Spiderman
Top 5 Favorite Male TV Characters
  1. The Doctor (Doctor Who)
  2. John Watson (Sherlock)
  3. Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock)
  4. Arthur (Merlin)
  5. Captain Jack Harkness (Doctor Who)
Top 5 Favorite Female TV Characters
  1. Morgana (Merlin)
  2. Gwen Merlin)
  3. Martha Jones (Doctor Who)
  4. Donna Noble (Doctor Who)
  5. Rose Tyler (Doctor Who)
Top 5 Favorite TV Animals
  1. Animal (Muppets)
  2. Kermit  (Muppets)
  3. Gonzo (Muppets)
  4. Fozzie Bear (Muppets)
  5. K-9 (Doctor Who)