Sordid, (edited ) avatar

Hot take: It’s not that LotR was a fluke, it’s that it’s massively overrated. It’s just your standard big-budget American blockbuster with amazing visuals and music that does little more than pay lip service to its source material. I have to laugh when people get up in arms about the character derailment of Luke in the sequel trilogy but nobody bats an eye at Aragorn just straight-up murdering Mouth during negotiations in RotK. I likewise don’t get the hate for the Hobbit movies, as if they’re somehow obviously worse than LotR. I really don’t see it, to me they’re just more of the same.

WheeGeetheCat, avatar

Yup, few people remember how few and far between big budget fantasy films used to be. Computer graphics have gotten cheap enough now that we see big fantasy sets all the time. Back when LOTR hit it was really rare for someone to cater to the fantasy crowd on the big screen, especially for a whole trilogy.

Much like the original Tolkien novels are a hard read but still seen as classics because they laid groundwork for the genre, the movies are seen as classics because they came first. They are probably Peter Jackson’s best movies but that’s only because he got even worse at editing as he went on.


The Hobbit was a corporate screw-job. New Line said they’d do it with or without him, and he decided he’d rather helm it than watch someone else fuck it up. (Or watch all that money leave New Zealand.) Aaand then the studio pushed him around like any other stooge. No respect whatsoever for giving them a celebrated mountain of cash.

Lindsey Ellis’s unsubtle three-part overview covers the biggest problem: some contract promised money per-film, not as a flat percentage. Two okay films got rudely chopped into three mediocre films. Couple that with ass-pull deadlines and yet another hideously overworked CGI studio and you get dwarves surfing on molten gold.


The first Hobbit was pretty good in my imo.


I think so too, even the second had a few good scenes. I don’t remember anything from the third


The bilbo edition is a fan cut that chops the three movies up into a single film and I enjoy it a lot


But I loved the Get Back documentary


I understand he was pressured into (or to step up in?) The Hobbit after things were already very much on the wrong track.

And he’d been brewing ideas of how to do lotr long before doing it, and never intended to do The Hobbit.


King Kong was ace


Not a fluke, just peaked very early in his international career. LOTR was only his second big budget production. Name another director who made three movies in a row that are as epic as the LOTR trilogy and made movies that are similar or higher quality afterwards. There aren’t many.


Ridley Scott maybe?

sxan, avatar

He set himself a really high bar, for sure.

hillbicks, avatar

I still have to chuckle when I see the updated cover for Bad Taste

Still have no idea how he managed to score that job at the time.


You missed the R rated muppet movie he did.


Dude’s got so much money now that he can do anything he wants with his life, and apparently making big budget movies isn’t that.


yeah dude is a fucking billionaire. He sold only a part of Weta Digital for $1.6 billion to those idiots at Unity. And now with Unity shuttering their Weta department he gets almost everything back.

HootinNHollerin, avatar

He has the largest and best collection of WWI airplanes in the world


Many of which are on public display, too.


Making cutting edge documentaries seem to be what he wants to do with his time


I’m sure Meet the Feebles was in the top three Anon meant.

MrJameGumb, avatar

Bad Taste has got to take the number one spot though. It’s definitely Jackson’s best work


What about Braindead though. One of the funniest and most disturbing movies I’ve ever seen.

MrJameGumb, avatar

It took me a minute to figure out what you were talking about, they called it Dead Alive here lol

Also another classic for sure!



Lawnmower vs zombie gore > every other bit of gratuitous splatter in PJ's early work.


“I kick ass for the lord!” still sets me off like nothing else.


“Your mother ate my dog” ranks a little higher for me.

MrJameGumb, avatar

I don’t think it’s that big of a mystery. I’m sure it had a lot to do with him trying to turn The Hobbit into a new epic trilogy. It’s a pretty short book, it really just needed one film. Also, the first one was terrible to the point that I never bothered watching the other two, and I love LOTR


That wasn’t really on Jackson from what I understand. He originally wasn’t even going to be directing the Hobbit films, but had to come in after the original director had other obligations and things were a mess when he got there. I believe the studio had already decided that it would be three films as well, but I could be misremembering.


He could have quit the project though.


He could’ve quit as much as you could’ve started it.


My understanding is that he (at least partially) did it so other people wouldn’t be out of their jobs. Some of which he might already know from the LOTR trilogy.

Who knows if the project would have continued without Peter Jackson stepping in.


The hobbit films being a mess were entirely the fault of new line.

The preproduction of LOTR was in the range of 2 years. That's hammering out the script, but also locations, sets, securing extras, apparently all of the horses in NZ for some of the shots but also all of the costumes and armor.

All of those preproduction things were allowed in the range of 6 weeks(as opposed to over 100) for the Hobbit, and New Line refused to budge at all.


I’m sure it had a lot to do with him trying to turn The Hobbit into a new epic trilogy.

IIRC: He only wanted to do two movies and that was what was originally announced. Then the studio said,if you want our funding, make three.

So we ended up with the hobbit shitshow.


And the idea of two was partly to try buy time and put in more detail. Much of what he took on wasn’t prepared and they wouldn’t give more time, so he had to improvise on the fly. Very hard turd to polish. Then having to do three, suddenly the opposite problem, but still no time to shift and prep.


Annnnd, that’s why he’s not “doing anything” these days.

I genuinely hope he’s living his best life. Fuck Hollywood.


I genuinely hope he’s living his best life.

He owns Weta FX which is constantly in demand so I doubt he is short of cash or interesting shit to do.

otter, (edited )

They made a kick-ass tabletop game of corporate-funded mech gladiator battles called Heavy Hitters, btw. Simply out of a shared love for the themes involved. 🤘🏼

resketreke avatar

I watched all three, and they were all terrible. I've watched the LOTR trilogy a few times, I've only watched The Hobbit trilogy once and I don't think I'm ever watching them again.

Pons_Aelius, (edited )

There are a few fan edits that dump all the padding bullshit and the LOTR foreshadowing. The results is two Ok movies that follow the book quite well, still nowhere near LOTR but not the pile of shit the studio cuts are.


We watched the six movies not that long ago and it was the first time my GF watched them and she really enjoyed the Bilbo movies but couldn’t wait to be done with LotR…


Did you show her the extended lotr cuts or the original releases? Extended editions are better for telling closer to the whole story, but the originals are better films.


Extended and I guess you’re right, even for me it felt like the movies didn’t age that well


Yeah the long cuts are for existing fans and are generally not good for first time viewing. I’ve made the same mistake for nearly two decades before I realized that. And Peter Jackson even says as much!

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