I’ve been going through my old photos and trying to make them interesting. When I’m in Cusco, with IncaRunners for example, I generally take two or three shots of every composition. This is just to ensure that everybody has their eyes open in every photo you take–or at least in one of them. The secondary part of this is that you get a lot of overlapping shots that are essentially the same.
In the original version of the above picture, all the figures in the foreground were just shady blurs. However, by messing with some of the color settings, I was actually able to clear up the faces of the foreground figures. The kid on the right looks like he belongs on a Latin poster for Les Miserables.
Anyway, just another random photo that caught my attention for all of two seconds.
On another note, I finally got a chance to see “The Hobbit” yesterday. My feelings on it are a little mixed. I wanted to like it more than I actually did, but I can’t tell if part of my semi-disappointment was the fact that I didn’t see it in full-on 3-d in a theater somewhere (I watched it on my own awesome home theater, but you have distractions such as kids, etc., which makes it a bit more of an interrupted viewing experience).
I’m not opposed to Jackson’s idea of stretching the book into a trilogy. I think there is plenty of material that got left out of LOTR, and to some extent they were able to integrate that effectively (although I didn’t like the character design of Radagast the Brown).
Had this film been the first one we saw leading up to LOTR, it would have been a grand slam home run. As it was, it feels a bit like the wind has been sucked out of the sales. Some of the tie-ins with the other trilogy are OK, but I didn’t like some of the little details. For example, the way the ring falls on Bilbo’s finger the first time is exactly how it falls on Frodo’s finger in “Fellowship.” Sure, the scene is effective, but in creative endeavors you really can’t do the same thing the same way in two different films and have the audience be entertained. The gimmick has lost its power. The same is true of Gandalf constantly whispering to moths–been there done that.
I do have to say though that I’m one of those people who would have liked to spend more time in the Star Wars universe–for example–on occasion. A lot of times films feel rushed and the public says, “slow down, we want to take a leisurely stroll through this world.” Well, “The Hobbit” is a leisurely stroll exactly like what we’ve been clamoring for, so we shouldn’t complain. Heck, maybe this is the future of story telling.
However, I think this film really suffered by not having Guillermo Del Toro at the helm. He’s much more of a visionary director than Jackson, and I think the film would have benefited by having somebody doing things slightly differently. Del Toro is a bit creepier than Jackson too, so I don’t think the Goblin king would have been such of a joke like he ended up being.
But don’t get me wrong, it’s a good movie and I think I’ll have more appreciation for it 10 years down the road if I decide to settle in for a long weekend of Halfling’s leaf and Radagast mushrooms and watch the two trilogies back to back without leaving the home theater. It’s going to tie in well with LOTR, although it feels a bit like a vanity project.
Oh, and I thought it interesting that the character design for Thorin looks a lot like Maddox from “The Best Web Page in the Universe.” He’s the author of “Crappy Children’s Art.” I did a movie poster mock-up to highlight the similarity between him and Thorin…of which he approved:
If you would like a larger file of the above image for a print or use in a publication, just send $10 to my paypal account at firstname.lastname@example.org, and mention the title and date of the post where the image appeared. Be sure to include an email I can contact you with for questions.