So you’re sitting there, twiddling your thumbs and counting ceiling tiles waiting for the moment you can finally relax into a cushioned theater seat to rejoin Bilbo on his adventure. What can you do to kill time in the months between now and then? Here are some things you can do to kill that time dead. And by do I mean watch, because you’re up to ceiling tile 327 and you’re about to go crazy. The best part is that it’s all at least tangentially related to The Hobbit.
Rewatch The Lord of The Rings Trilogy
There are several trilogies but only a few that rank up there consistently as favorites in people’s minds. They tend to be Toy Story, The Godfather, and Lord of the Rings. And rightly so, they are all spectacular. But there’s always been something about Middle Earth. It’s sprawling. Several groups of characters going on several separate adventures all in an effort to save the world from an encroaching evil. And even ten years later (wow, ten years later?) the movies still hold up great. Wait for the middle of the beginning by watching how it ends.
Game of Thrones
Considering there are only one or two people out there who don’t watch this show, the synopsis given by someone who’s already tried to convince you to watch the show would be that it’s Lord of the Rings with more blood and sex. Though the parallels end at the setting, Westeros is still a magnificent facsimile for Middle Earth. Magical creatures and undead armies with genocidal intent. The greed and madness of those with too much power and not enough time to exercise it all. Warring nations. People with English accents. Lots of hiking across the countryside to reach an important plot point destination. And of course, dragons.
Maybe you’re so far along that you’ll only focus on something else if it means you can see Bilbo doing something adventurous? How about solving mysteries in modern London with Sherlock Holmes? And if you’ve seen Star Trek Into Darkness, Sherlock Holmes in this iteration is Benedict Cumberbatch. Using the powers of deductive reasoning and intelligence bordering on madness, Watson and Holmes solve cases for the London police when they are too baffled by the evidence. If you need a scale in which to pre-judge this, it’s much, much better than the movies with Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law. Fine actors themselves, the movies just don’t know how to capture who Sherlock is or what he does. This series on the BBC however, manages to properly encapsulate all the vices and virtues that make Holmes interesting without going too far into the absurd or comical. Brilliantly written, masterfully executed, it’s something you have to be careful with because of the limited number of episodes. If you’re not careful you’ll fly through them.
How to Train Your Dragon
Based on the single shot of Smaug’s head in this trailer it can be safely assumed that there aren’t any movies with dragons in them that could keep up with this movie. Like the shot of the Jaeger dragging along a cargo ship to use as a blunt striking object in the Pacific Rim trailer. it’s all you need in the trailer to get people’s butts in seats. Unfortunately, there aren’t all that many good movies with dragons, and for the few that are, there are dozens more that are awful. But here’s one that has a bit more heart than the rest. It answers the age old question of who would win in a fight, a Viking or a dragon? The answer is that during a great feud between the two clans a boy and a dragon with a clipped wing form an unbreakable bond as they try to stop the endless fighting. They don’t get dragons right very often, so when they do, like in this movie, you stop and appreciate it. Because it’ll be months before you can again.
Read the original story
It doesn’t need to be said that the original story of The Hobbit is regarded as a classic in fantasy literature. But The Hobbit is a regarded as a classic in fantasy literature. A story meant for young adults about the journeys of an agoraphobic little person traveling across the countryside with dwarves and a wizard to reclaim the near endless amount of gold now guarded by the fire breathing dragon, Smaug. But why would you want to spoil the movie for yourself by reading the book? Well, it’s up to you. There are always going to be elements of the story omitted or altered in any reinterpretation. And if you choose not to spoil the movie by reading the book, should you choose to read the book, it’ll have been spoiled for you by the movie! If you have to hold out for one, read the book first. It’ll be much easier to read the book first and see the movie, than to see the movie and read the book.
Keep Counting the Ceiling Tiles
Because if you managed to get all the way to 327 that’s actually rather impressive. See if you can’t get any higher before you move onto something equally unproductive.
For anyone who hasn’t yet seen the official teaser trailer for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug: