Directed by Oscar-winning director Peter Jackson, “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” is the third in a trilogy of films adapting the enduringly popular masterpiece, “The Hobbit,” by J.R.R. Tolkien.
“The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” brings to an epic conclusion the adventures of Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) and the Company of Dwarves. The Dwarves of Erebor have reclaimed the vast wealth of their homeland, but now must face the consequences of having unleashed the terrifying Dragon, Smaug, upon the defenseless men, women and children of Lake-town.
As he succumbs to dragon-sickness, the King Under the Mountain, Thorin Oakenshield, sacrifices friendship and honor in his search for the legendary Arkenstone. Unable to help Thorin see reason, Bilbo is driven to make a desperate and dangerous choice, not knowing that even greater perils lie ahead. An ancient enemy has returned to Middle-earth. Sauron, the Dark Lord, has sent forth legions of Orcs in a stealth attack upon the Lonely Mountain.
As darkness converges on their escalating conflict, the races of Dwarves, Elves and Men must decide—unite or be destroyed. Bilbo finds himself fighting for his life and the lives of his friends as five great armies go to war.
“The Hobbit” Trilogy tells a continuous story set in Middle-earth 60 years before “The Lord of the Rings,” which Jackson and his team brought to the big screen in the blockbuster trilogy that culminated with the Oscar best picture-winning “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.”
Ian McKellen returns as Gandalf the Grey, with Martin Freeman in the central role of Bilbo Baggins, and Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield. The international ensemble cast is led by Evangeline Lilly, Luke Evans, Lee Pace, Benedict Cumberbatch, Billy Connolly, James Nesbitt, Ken Stott, Aidan Turner, Dean O’Gorman, Graham McTavish, Stephen Fry and Ryan Gage. The film also stars Cate Blanchett, Ian Holm, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, Orlando Bloom, Mikael Persbrandt, Sylvester McCoy, Peter Hambleton, John Callen, Mark Hadlow, Jed Brophy, William Kircher, Stephen Hunter, Adam Brown, John Bell, Manu Bennett and John Tui.
The screenplay ” is by Jackson, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens and Guillermo del Toro.
“The Hobbit, or “There and Back Again,” was first published in 1937, having emerged from the revered author, poet, university professor and philologist Tolkien’s imagination as bedtime stories for his children. In the 17 years that followed, Tolkien continued to develop, expand and enrich the complex mythology of Middle-earth to produce its sprawling, apocalyptic conclusion, “The Lord of the Rings.”
Collectively, the author’s towering modern myth has had a seismic impact on world culture, becoming among the bestselling novels ever written, and sparking the imaginations of generations of readers all over the world.
“The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” opens this week in theaters nationwide.