The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

(PG-13) ★★★☆☆

This first of three movies to be extracted from J.R.R. Tolkien’s slim novel is moderately engaging. Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), a homey hobbit ill-suited to dangerous adventures, gets mixed up in just such a quest. Bilbo and Gandalf (Ian McKellen) and 13 dwarves set out to reclaim the ravaged kingdom or Erebor. Peter Jackson is up to his old tricks, and it’s pleasant enough, but three films seem a bit extreme and the controversial 48 frames-per-second that Jackson used is awful. See it in 24 if you can.

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