The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug 3D | Chicago Reader

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug 3D

As someone who’s always felt alienated by the myth-making of Wagner and Tolkien, I'm hardly one to say whether Peter Jackson's big-screen adaptations of The Hobbit succeed in conveying the spirit of the book. I can say, though, that Jackson's bloated, hollow spectacle feels closer to a theme park attraction than to narrative filmmaking. Like The Hobbit: The Journey Begins (2012), this second installment opens with an hour of perfunctory exposition and continues with nearly another two of nonstop sensory stimulation. The chaotic action, amped-up sound effects, and needlessly intricate CGI landscapes (which are less convincing than traditional sets or even the hand-drawn backdrops of Disney classics) wore me out well before the movie was over. With Martin Freeman, Ian McKellan, and Benedict Cumberbatch.



  • Peter Jackson


  • Ian McKellen
  • Martin Freeman
  • Richard Armitage
  • Benedict Cumberbatch
  • Evangeline Lilly
  • Lee Pace
  • Luke Evans
  • Ken Stott
  • James Nesbitt
  • Orlando Bloom
  • Cate Blanchett
  • Christopher Lee
  • Hugo Weaving
  • John Bell
  • Jed Brophy
  • Adam Brown
  • John Callen
  • Stephen Fry
  • Ryan Gage
  • Mark Hadlow
  • Peter Hambleton
  • Stephen Hunter
  • William Kircher
  • Sylvester McCoy
  • Graham McTavish
  • Michael Mizrahi
  • Dean O'Gorman
  • Mikael Persbrandt
  • Aidan Turner


  • Carolynne Cunningham
  • Zane Weiner
  • Fran Walsh
  • Peter Jackson
  • Alan Horn
  • Toby Emmerich
  • Ken Kamins
  • Carolyn Blackwood

What others are saying

  • Reviews (4)

    Showing 1-4 of 4

    Add a review
    Current Rating
    2.2 out of 5

    Add a review


    Select a star to rate.