There are times in a successful artist’s life – like for instance the film director Peter Jackson‘s – when the temptation to take something that previously rendered said artist successful – an earlier work, a technique, a font of inspiration – and to elongate it, to try in some way to spin out the thing which once looked so fresh and exciting, to extend it beyond any useful limit, until the very concept, the original energy and joy of the thing is so worn thin as to snap and if not snap then to simply continue on and on and on and on until even your most ardent fans are exhausted or embarrassed and look away, the way one might look away when you have accidentally walked in on a particularly ugly Aunt and Uncle making love drunkenly on a water bed in front of what has to be said is top of the range and state of the art home HD video equipment, including studio grade lighting and an en suite editing console fully manned – perhaps by your mother and father, both wearing awkward expressions as they pre-visualize yet another extended edition to supplement the already engorged and distended unspeakable act that even now, even after this preamble and our interruption which Uncle Fred and Auntie Mavis seem unfazed by, not for a second being put off their (dare I say it) stroke, we are still watching; so it is one might say with Peter Jackson’s new film and the second installment in the three film prequeology to his original Lord of the Rings (including Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, Lord of the Rings: the Two Towers and Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King), The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug starring Martin Freeman, Ian McKellan and (God help us all) Orlando Bloom, but okay, it’s long, overlong and much longer than the book, but the important question has to be is it any good? 
Well, I think

Join us next year for the end of this review. 

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