Christmas Eve I went to see J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Hobbit" and didn't know what to expect. As the theatre filled and the previews started I wondered what I was going to see for the next 3 hours. As the movie got underway I couldn't help but smile due to the very skilful storytelling of J.R.R. Tolkien and Peter Jackson's wonderful scenery and music as a background to the story.
As the story begins Bilbo Baggins is speaking with the wizard Gandalf the Great whom he doesn't recognize from a boy. Gandalf wants him to join him on a quest to regain a dwarf kingdom lost in a mountain a long time ago. Bilbo is not interested at all and tells Gandalf to leave him alone, so Gandalf leaves. As Gandalf leaves he puts a wizard mark with his staff.
Later that evening as Bilbo is having his dinner he hears a knock at the door. As he opens the door there is a rough-looking warrior dwarf at his door. The dwarf lets himself into the kitchen and asks where the food is because he's hungry. Bilbo awkwardly hands him his plate and the dwarf gobbles it down.
A few minutes later more guests arrive to the unexpected dinner party until finally Gandalf arrives at the door. As the party continues the dwarfs thoroughly clean out his cabinets of all food and drink. Finally they get down to business and start discussing their plans to take back the dwarf kingdom taken away by a fire-breathing dragon.
They again offer Bilbo the job of sneaking past the dragon, handing him a contract that tells him there is a great chance of incineration, evisceration, and/or death. He elects not to go on the quest and everyone leaves in disappointment. The next day he has a change of heart and catches up with the group of dwarfs and Gandalf.
As the movie carries on the group discovers that there is something more evil and sinister going on in the land than they thought. Being the great leader that he is, Gandalf enlists the help of the elves going against their advice and against the advice of Saruman the White, leader of the wizards. Gandalf does this because he feels in his gut that it is the right thing to continue the quest.
Throughout the movie there are many epic entertaining battle scenes and intriguing characters but what really makes this movie is this: The Hobbit has an overall positive message. Most importantly though is that there is a group of heroes that we can follow and that inspire us to have courage, and to help others.
We may not slay dragons with swords or fight ogers with bows and arrows, but we can help the kid with homework and listen to those that need a listening ear. I think it is time that movies like "The Hobbit" get more credit for all the right things that are in this movie.