An Unexpected Journey is actually only the first installment of The Hobbit films as planned by Peter Jackson, the same man behind the worldwide success of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Anyway, as it turns out The Hobbit is also planned as a trilogy with Desolation of Smaug the (long-awaited and greatly anticipated) second installment which is due this year in December and There and Back Again, the third and final installment which will be released in late 2014. An Unexpected Journey tells the story of a hobbit named Bilbo Baggins who is approached by the powerful wizard Gandalf and is tasked with accompanying a party of thirteen dwarves who are on a quest to reclaim their lost kingdom of Erebor that has been destroyed and occupied by the mighty and vicious dragon Smaug. And now that we’re familiar with the fluff, let’s go to further details.
An Unexpected Journey boasts some of the best sound to be found in epic films. The sound effects are deep and realistic and serve to show the audience just what kind of world Middle Earth is. Dialogue is crystal clear and the emotions of the characters are well acted out. Howard Shore, the man behind the score of Lord of the Rings even returns to create the epic soundtrack for The Hobbit and takes us once again to Middle Earth.
An Unexpected Journey possesses some of the most stunning graphics of the decade with its expertly made motion capture techniques, allowing them to put into the film some of the finer details of CGI actors like Andy Serkis and fully translate their movements. New Zealand is also epic as ever as Peter Jackson returns to get visuals of the general setting and boy does it bring tears of joy to one’s eye.
The film extras also shed some light on how the film was made and the difficulties in actually completing it from the point of view of Peter Jackson as well as his cast and crew.