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My friend's review of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Well, considering that they took about 25 pages of the book and turned it into a 2 hour movie, not terrible. But it was like one long battle and no plot.

It's been some 30 years since I read the Hobbit, but I'm pretty certain she was exaggerating. Still, it made me wonder how much of the book was covered in each movie.

What portions of the book does each movie cover?

Since page numbers will vary from one edition to the next, I'm looking for either chapters (roughly speaking, since some material was added) and/or general high-level plot points.

  • 1
    I know that the first movie lasts until around the end of Out of the Frying-Pan, Into the Fire but it should be noted that Azog was long dead in the books (he was actually slain when Thorin in the movie thought he was). – Premier Bromanov Dec 22 '14 at 20:13
  • Don't loose track of the fact these Hobbit movies elaborate far beyond the book, pulling in elements from the Silmarillion, incorporating elements from LOTR, and making up a ton of other stuff... // I'd be ok with this under the theory that Bilbo wrote The Hobbit for children and left a lot out on purpose -- except that the first two movies were so poor (esp. compared to Jackson's LOTR of just one decade earlier). I don't even know if I'm going to bother seeing the third. – zipquincy Dec 22 '14 at 20:24
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    @zipquincy - don't forget that Jackson is legally prohibited from using anything from the Silmarillion. – user8719 Dec 23 '14 at 1:29
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The first movie, An Unexpected Journey, covers chapters 1 to 6, a total of just over 81 pages in the copy I'm currently referencing. This comprises:

  • The Unexpected Party and formation of the company.
  • The Trolls.
  • Rivendell.
  • Crossing the Misty Mountains and the Goblins.
  • Gollum.
  • The Eagles.

Desolation of Smaug covers chapters 7 to 12, or 82 pages.

  • Beorn.
  • Mirkwood and the Spiders.
  • Capture by and escape from the Elves.
  • Lake-town.
  • Erebor and the Secret Door.
  • Smaug.

The Battle of Five Armies covers chapters 13 to 19, a further 50 pages.

  • The Dwarves in Erebor.
  • Destruction of Lake-town and Death of Smaug.
  • Prelude to the Battle.
  • Bilbo and the Arkenstone.
  • The Battle.
  • The Journey Home and the Auction.

So as far as the book is concerned, it's a fairly even divide (6/6/7), although it's notable that the page-count covered by the last movie is quite a bit shorter (although there is a lot happening in those fewer pages).

What's interesting is that in the movies, Jackson & co reversed the first two parts of the third movie/section. What's especially interesting is that in doing so, they actually ended up restoring the order that Tolkien had originally written those chapters in.

  • 1
    I wasn't aware of the "reversal" you mention. This is why I need The Annotated Hobbit! – Matt Gutting Dec 22 '14 at 20:25
  • @MattGutting - it's actually in the History of the Hobbit. – user8719 Dec 22 '14 at 20:25
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    @phantom42 - as you'll notice, the Dol Guldur storyline doesn't appear here; in the book it's just an excuse to get Gandalf away from the company so that Bilbo has a chance to show his worth, and there's no detail at all about it (aside from a passing mention at the end). – user8719 Dec 22 '14 at 20:34

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