– Why this post?
I’ll be going through the rest of the “Approaching Tolkien” articles soon. However, since we’re on the subject of ‘The Hobbit’, let’s continue the discussion a bit more.
I’ve also already mentioned and explained that I’m a huge fan (go figure!) of the films.
Now, with the release of ‘The Hobbit’ trilogy, I’m constantly on the look-out for any updates.
Recently, (about a month or so ago, to be honest), the poster (along with the trailer) for the second installment ‘The Desolation of Smaug’, was released.
At that time, I had written a very short article online on the how (and why) I thought it was such an important and beautiful image.
I will be re-posting that article here for anyone who’s interested to know my thoughts about it.
– The brilliance of ‘The Desolation of Smaug’ poster
Remember the first official teaser poster that was released for ‘An Unexpected Journey’?
We were given a very limited look into what the film would consist of – however, it proved to be the most effective and elicited an important theme from the book itself.
The poster portrayed Bilbo Baggins walking out of Bag-End’s front door and to any Tolkien fan that would have immediately reminded us of the popular poem: ‘The Road Goes Ever On’. The significance of this image lies with the reluctant hero as he steps out of the door and is carried away into an adventure that will change his life.
This clearly resonates with an older Bilbo’s explanation to Frodo (mainly in ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’ film) of how “you step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to”). This is ultimately one of the central concepts in the story of ‘The Hobbit’ and that idea is clearly portrayed in the poster: hinting at the unknown, the new and the unexpected.
With the release of the DOS (that’s “Desolation of Smaug”, folks), we have an interesting continuation of that same Bilbo’s-back–towards-audience imagery – but this time, conveying the opposite to that of the first film.
Whereas in AUJ (yep … “An Unexpected Journey”) we are being shown the beginning of the journey and “out of the door” as it were, here we find Bilbo lost in the immensity of the Lonely Mountain’s entrance at journey’s end. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean the end of the adventure itself.
Indeed, this poster evokes a sense of anticipation and dread at what lies behind the gate and a gradual evolution from the first film’s poster. Here we find the hobbit having to “step inside” the primary danger of the whole adventure.
That same feeling of the unknown, the unexpected and the revelation of a new world (and adventures) is similarly evoked as in AUJ’s poster, but here we are now looking at what that stepping “onto the road” literally means – as we witness the devastation and destruction surrounding the small figure of the hobbit.
Time will tell what the first poster of ‘There and Back Again’ may reveal. However, I do not doubt that something along the same lines as the first two will be devised.
I can’t wait till I can my hands on all three posters to hang on my wall!
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