When bitten by a genetically modified spider, a nerdy, shy, and awkward high school student gains spider-like abilities that he eventually must use to fight evil as a superhero after tragedy befalls his family.
After the Dragon leaves the Lonely Mountain, the people of Lake-town see a threat coming. Orcs, dwarves, elves and people prepare for war. Bilbo sees Thorin going mad and tries to help. Meanwhile, Gandalf is rescued from the Necromancer's prison and his rescuers realize who the Necromancer is.
Before seeing _The Battle of the Five Armies_ today, I told people, "The first two films lacked fidelity to the book, but this one should be better." I figured Jackson wouldn't have to add lots of extraneous invented action scenes because the final third of the book contained plenty of action.
Boy, was I wrong.
Unnecessary invented characters from the previous films continued to take up screen time in this one, and many new ones were added. Tolkien wouldn't recognize a bunch of grand-scale evildoers or various "good guys" whose relationships were supposed to tug at our hearts, though they turned my stomach instead.
The additions included plenty of trite dialogue. When one invented character, in a scene made from whole cloth, was shown weeping over a loved one and asking "Why does it hurt so much?", I just about tossed my Junior Mints.
Meanwhile, a character largely responsible for turning the tide in the book's Battle of Five Armies (note the lack of a "the" before "Five") was shown in the film, without explanation, for about three seconds. Blink and you might miss it.
When one baddie was apparently killed, I thought, "If he suddenly jumps up and starts fighting again, I'm leaving." Too bad I didn't follow through on my threat after that excruciatingly predictable plot twist.
Did I mention that Dain, confronting the elf warriors, came across as some nightmare parody of John Cleese performing "The Lord of the Fawlty Towers"?
I could go on, but "travesty" is about the kindest word I can use for this mass of claptrap. I now fear that Jackson will film _The Silmarillion_, turning it into yet another tawdry, over-the-top CGI fest.
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