Fan Cuts The Hobbit Into A Single, 4-Hour Movie

Fan Cuts The Hobbit Into A Single, 4-Hour Movie

The first thing I thought after watching The Battle of Five Armies was "boy, that's a movie that didn't need to be made". Now, thanks to the power of fans and the internet, we can pretend around half of Peter Jackson's entire Hobbit trilogy never happened.

A guy by the name of tolkieneditor (via Daily Dot) has sat down with a copy of the book, decent versions of all three Hobbit films (the third has leaked already, because it's Oscars season) and a desire to make some deep and heavy cuts to Jackson's ponderous adaptation.

The result is The Hobbit: The Tolkien Edit, which whittles all those extra scenes and characters away into a single, (relatively) tight four-hour movie.

As per tolkieneditor's site, some of the biggest cuts (two of which you can see as vids in this post) include:

  • The investigation of Dol Guldor has been completely excised
  • The Tauriel-Legolas-Kili love triangle has also been removed.
  • The Pale Orc subplot is vastly trimmed down.
  • Several of the Laketown scenes have been cut, such as Bard's imprisonment and the superfluous orc raid.
  • The prelude with old Bilbo is gone.
  • Several of the orc skirmishes have been cut.
  • Several of the action scenes have been tightened up, such as the barrel-ride, the fight between Smaug and the dwarves (no molten gold in this version), and the Battle of the Five Armies.
  • A lot of filler scenes have been cut as well.

As you can see, this isn't a direct attempt to adapt the book. Some of the scenes that have been left in are there at the editor's discretion, as have some of the cuts, so the next person who comes along and tries this may well have a slightly shorter, or at least different, take on things.

But I'd be surprised if these fan attempts don't all end up at roughly the same place in the end: a much shorter story that does a better job at bringing Tolkien's original tale to the big screen, because they don't have to worry about contracts or studio money or whatever else drove Jackson to stretch the story as thin as butter over too much bread.


    A pity they took out ANY of the Bards scenes, given they were about the only non-boring parts of Smaug...

    I feel like I'm the only person who thought that the additional content really improved the trilogy. It's going to make it feel so much more consistent when you view it as a hexalogy.

      I don't know, the new Legolas stuff in 'Five Armies' should have fixed up his confusion at seeing grief, and attitude towards dwarves, but he still has both of those in the Rings movies. Not to mention every power-player on Middle Earth showing up at the Sauron fight, and then only worrying about him again 60 years later.

      Just as long as we don't start getting re-jigged Rings special editions, trying to cram in the superfluous additions to the prequels and make them "fit"; a la Star Wars

      Last edited 20/01/15 7:52 pm

        Good point but I think the 60 years after BOTFA Legolas would have had time to build up a distrust of dwarves again. Plus he didn't really experience the grief first-hand, it wasn't until Gandalf fell that he felt it himself.

        WRT to the Sauron fight, it is canon after all - can't blame the movies.

        I feel like I'm making excuses here but as a Kiwi it's kind of my patriotic duty ;)

          Peej messed with the books to the movies' detriment, including why the White Council drove Sauron from Dol Guldur. Now it doesn't even make sense in his own movie-verse, because of Gandalf's horrified realisation in Fellowship that Sauron's back. Maybe he developed Alzheimer's, or maybe toking up all that Longbottom leaf gave him brain damage.

          Every other edit to me, is either 'harmless but unnecessary' or 'bad.' I don't know why he shoe-horned in the Kili/Tauriel interracial romance. It's not particularly believable and it makes Kili's death rather less noble. Instead of him and his brother dying defending their fallen uncle on the field, he now gets stabbed ~for love~ I could go on, but blergh.

          "Plus he didn't really experience the grief first-hand, it wasn't until Gandalf fell that he felt it himself." I mean more how he stands about with a baffled expression, watching everyone like he's never seen people in anguish before.

          I need to dig-out the Appendices again, but I don't remember everyone being in Dol Guldur. I thought they all brushed off the news as "Crazy Gandalf's exaggerating again, we don't need to worry.

        Not to mention every power-player on Middle Earth showing up at the Sauron fight, and then only worrying about him again 60 years later.

        Didn't they banish him during that fight? You know, when Cate Blanchett did her banshee impression?

        Last edited 20/01/15 8:25 pm

          They drove him out of Dol Guldur, but didn't destroy him (there's a line in the movie, something like 'Gondor must be warned' which suggests that they know he'd re-appear in Mordor too). It just doesn't work with the LOTR trilogy, because the White Council (including Gandalf) now knows with certainty the necromancer is Sauron and that a ring of power is involved (why Saruman decided to attack int he first place). Yet Gandalf seems shocked in Fellowship when he finds out that 1) a ring is involved and 2) Sauron's back.

      I'm with you actually - I enjoyed them all even after reading the books.

      You're not alone, I really enjoyed all three films. And I'm planning on getting all three extended editions on DVD like I did with the LOTR trilogy. So take that Luke.

    I'm not a fan of these movies, but I do like parts of them, and I don't put the novels on a pedestal. An adaptation shouldn't slavishly follow the novels, and when it diverges, can introduce new insight in the same way Game of Thrones does to A Song of Ice and Fire.

    I don't like the weird love triangle thing. I understand that Peej wanted to add to add a female touch because the novels were a sausage party (same reason Arwen substituted for Glorfindel in LOTR), but the Kili/Tauriel/Legolas love triangle was Anakin/Padme levels of bad. Oh, they met in the forest, she was a prison warden and they talked, they must be in love!

    I don't like how the gold sickness that affects all the dwarves in the company was instead isolated solely to Thorin so by movie 3, he's just a massive jerk, and an unsympathetic one at that.

    I didn't like that Alfred character. Poor Stephen Fry, one of the most talented comedians got like 10 minutes of screentime and his toady Alfred lingers for several scenes into #3. None of it was satisfying either, he was already established as a greedy and opportunistic foil to Bard, but we didn't need 5 more scenes to see it?

    I don't like how overly choreographed and reliant these movies were on CGI for the fights. I re-watched LOTR to make sure I wasn't imagining it, but it's night and day. Aragorn is one of the most skilled warriors in Middle Earth but he gets bloodied, dazed, and the sh*t kicked out of him in those movies and it feels real. Fast forward to these Hobbit movies and everyone is 10x the warrior Aragorn was, even Bombur and the Amish-looking dwarf (Ori?). Not a scratch! Even Legolas's oft-mocked shield/skateboard in Two Towers is nothing next to the back flipping, molten gold, collapsing tower, white water rapid hijinks in these Hobbit movies.

    There are more issues I had with them, but it was the shameless padding that really stuck out, that and the attempt to make these movies as 'epic' as LOTR. In the book, the goblins are just fighting over gold and to avenge the great goblin. Gee, could have cut a whole hour if they culled the Azog being an agent of Sauron plot point, which (IMO) cheapened his death.

    Last edited 20/01/15 8:54 pm

    I had no problem, conceptually speaking, with the scenes PJ added, I don't mind extending things. I just don't think the movies were very good. Wildly inconsistent, people acting completely out of character or just behaving in confusing ways. Cartoony, unrealistic, immersion shattering action scenes that drag on. And the filler. SOOOOOO much filler.

    I loom forward to this edit.

      Yeah, this is pretty much how I feel about it. All the added material could have been excellent had the movies been excellent. But they just... weren't.

    I liked the films. I went to see them with my daughter who was 5, 6 and 7 at the time. The films were a bit on the long side, but I enjoyed the Tauriel parts and I was pleased that Kili didn't miraculously survive the battle so they could walk into the sunset (as I feared). The only part that really disappointed me was the Master of Lake Town's premature death. I also scratched my head a bit at the boar-riding Dain and his highland dwarves - it seemed a little bit Warhammerish to me.

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