I was reading The Hobbit again, and thinking of how Peter Jackson will adapt it into a movie. Having seen Lord of the Rings more times than I can count, and having seen King Kong only once (once is all anyone needs to see it), I set about writing a summary of Peter Jackson’s treatment of The Hobbit.
And now, without further adieu ..
How Peter Jackson will make The Hobbit into a movie.
The movie will start out with Smaug coming and attacking the Lonely Mountain. Big dragon, fire, smoke, fog, lots of people and dwarves getting eaten. Thorin and his father and grandfather escape through the secret side passage. Thorin’s father has a Ring (one of the Seven for dwarves in their halls of stone and all that).
Cut to battles against goblins in Moria, and then some stuff with the Necromancer in the dark tower in Mirkwood, who captures Thorin’s dad, takes the Ring from him, and leaves him wandering and witless. Gandalf finds him and receives the key and map before Thror dies.
Lots of long, picturesque shots of Gandalf roaming over Middle Earth, doing detective work, trying to find out who that dying dwarf was and who is son is.
Gandalf finds Thorin and gives him the key and map. Thorin starts plotting revenge on Smaug, and gathers up his friends. Gandalf promises to help them a bit, and will find the fourteenth man for their expedition.
Enter Bilbo, who is sitting smoking when Gandalf walks up.
And the whole Unexpected Party, which will be played for high humor (because it is really quite funny). Bilbo’s character will be established, as well as the band of dwarves (the strong one, the fat one, the comic relief one, the leader, the gay one, etc. etc.)
Bilbo and the dwarves set out. Lots of pretty long shots of New Zealand landscapes. It will of course look different from Lord of the Rings, even though they’re still walking to Rivendell and it should be similar landscape.
The trolls will be slightly scary but played for comic relief. One of the dwarves or Bilbo will almost get eaten. Gandalf will do the trick with imitating their voices and confusing them, and then when dawn comes, Gandalf will jump out and flash real bright light from his wand (he carries a wand at this point). The trolls will freeze and turn to stone.
Then Gandalf and the dwarves get hawt lewt from the trolls’ stash, including Thorin’s sword and Gandalf’s sword, and Bilbo’s little sword Sting (only it’s not named that until later).
Lots of long pretty shots of New Zealand landscape until we get to Rivendell. It looks pretty much like it did in Lord of the Rings, only summertime colors, not fall. The elves are exactly like they were in LOTR, all quiet and somber and fey, and Elrond is also exactly the same (Hugo Weaving!)
Elrond holds up the map to the moonlight and special effects reveal the secret writing about how to find the secret door in the Lonely Mountain.
Cut to climbing the Misty Mountains. Lots of pretty New Zealand shots of weird mountains. Stone giants throw rocks at them and they barely escape. Oh, and there’s a storm, and it’s raining, and they’re running from stone giants and the rocks, and they all crowd into a little cave, where they’re immediately grabbed by goblins.
Goblins take them down into the goblin caves, and it’s all very Isengard, and we see goblin slaves, and goblin weapons, and how ugly Peter Jackson can make goblins (he’s had new ideas since LOTR). There will be giant bugs in there, too, and possibly snakes.
So they kill the Great Goblin, and Gandalf rescues them, and they run for it, and there will be lots of fighting and more giant bugs. Then Bilbo falls and hits his head. Cut to black.
Bilbo wakes up all alone. He goes crawling along for a bit and finds the One Ring. He goes on and runs into the lake with Gollum.
Gollum will be delightfully nasty, and improved from the end of Return of the King, even. They do the riddles and it will be played for humor.
Then Gollum finds that he’s lost the Ring, and comes after Bilbo, who puts the Ring on by accident and finds out that it makes him invisible. Gollum accidentally leads him to the cave exit, and there’s a moment just like Frodo has where Bilbo holds up Sting and thinks about stabbing Gollum, but it was Pity stayed his hand. This part will be overdone, because it has such a huge impact on the storyline of LOTR.
Bilbo sneaks out invisibly, gets caught by goblins, then escapes by putting on the Ring. He gets outside and finds his friends. They start hiking. Lots of pretty sunset shots of New Zealand forest. They come to the Worg circle, and the Worgs are those giant ugly hyena things because if they looked like wolves, the wolf-propaganda people would get mad. So they get up in the trees to get away from the worgs, and Gandalf lights them on fire, then the goblins come and push the fire back to the trees to cook the dwarves and Gandalf and Bilbo.
Then the deus ex machina I mean the Eagles of Middle Earth show up, and I hope dearly that they’re explained, for once. And that they talk. Anyway they rescue everybody and take them up to the mountaintops. Long tense shots of Bilbo’s fingers slipping and he falls and gets caught by another eagle.
The eagles fly them out to the river near Beorn’s place. Gandalf leads them there, but they run into Beorn’s bee-pastures with all kinds of pretty but evil-looking flowers. And there’s giant bees, and they get attacked. And some of the dwarves get stung and swell up all grotesquely. Anyway they run for it and run into Beorn, who is a bear, and they fight him before Gandalf is able to talk him down. Then Beorn turns into a man and lets them stay in his house.
Lots of CG animals serving food and things, a lot like that scene in Up when the dogs serve them dinner. It’s played for humor.
Now they head off to Mirkwood and Gandalf leaves them and tells them DON’T LEAVE THE PATH.
So they go into Mirkwood, and it’s all yucky and evil and dark, and there’s giant bugs. And there’s a montage of them walking and walking and running out of food and water.
The part with the enchanted water that puts you to sleep may or may not get cut out.
Anyway, they run out of food and water, and they see lights in the distance, and it’s elves. So they leave the path and try to ask for help, only the lights go out and it’s actually spiders. The spiders get the dwarves, but Bilbo uses his Ring to get away. He has to fight lots and lots of spiders, and it’s like a cross between Shelob and the giant bug scene from King Kong. A giant weta cricket will be in there somewhere, too.
Anyway, he rescues the dwarves, and as they’re escaping, they get grabbed by elves. Bilbo puts the Ring on and escapes. The elves take the dwarves to the elf palace in Mirkwood, and it’s all very pretty and Elvish. Bilbo finds Thorin in prison (he had been captured when they first saw the elves in the wood), and they plot how to escape. Lots of shots of Bilbo invisibly stealing food. It’s played for humor.
So he puts the dwarves in barrels. It’s played for humor. The elves drop them in the river and Bilbo just holds on and gets towed along. It’s played for humor.
They float out to Laketown, and Bilbo lets his friends out. We meet Bard, the guy who will kill Smaug. He bears an uncanny resemblance to Aragorn. He helps them and gets them set up to go on to the Lonely Mountain, and they kind of make friends but not really because Bard doesn’t have any friends.
So they go to the Lonely Mountain. Lots of pretty New Zealand landscape shots. They find the secret door, and Bilbo goes down and talks to Smaug. Smaug almost gets him, either by eating him or with fire. Then Smaug goes out and tries to smash the door, but he can’t find it, so he flies to Laketown and burns it up, and Bard almost gets killed (possibly he gets a shoulder wound). He shoots Smaug in the heart and Smaug dies and falls on the town. The CGI shot will have him falling directly onto the camera and it all goes black.
The dwarves and Bilbo walk out through Smaug’s horde, and Bilbo finds and hides the Arkenstone that Thorin wants so much. They get outside, wondering where Smaug is, and a raven tells them that Bard shot him and everybody’s coming to get the gold.
So there’s dramatic music as the dwarves wall off the mountain and prepare for a siege, and Bilbo is unhappy.
The men and elves show up, and Thorin is hugely rude to them. Bilbo sneaks out and gives them the Arkenstone to bargain with, and Gandalf shows up. He has a staff now and is somehow more epic, because he has been off helping to drive off the Necromancer. Possibly this will have been shown back during the Mirkwood trek, with Gandalf and Saruman working together (because Radagast and the other two wizards have been edited out of the movies).
Anyway, then there’s the Battle of Five Armies, and the goblins come with vampire bats, which are uber-nasty and suck a lot of blood out of the good guys. Bilbo tries to fight and gets run over and knocked down and stuff by goblins and horsemen and such.
The battle will be at least as big as the Minas Tirith battle in LOTR. And when Beorn shows up at the end, it’s win and awesome, and you want to stand up and cheer. And finally the eagles come, but Bilbo gets knocked out. Isn’t that always the way?
So he wakes up and finds Thorin is dying from a mortal wound, but Thorin wants to be friends again before he dies. It’s all very sad.
Then Bilbo goes home and they may or may not be auctioning off all the stuff in his house. If they are, it will be played for humor.
At the end, we will have a glimpse of Frodo as Bilbo adopts him as his heir. THE END.