The first week of December, I was invited to Los Angeles to peep the advanced screening of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, courtesy of Warner Brothers, at the world famous TCL Chinese Theater in Hollywood, CA. The second installment from Academy Award – winning filmmaker Peter Jackson is part of a planned trilogy that follows “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.”
In addition to the screening, I was invited to a unique pop-up book tour, which actually featured parts of the original four film sets. The one of a kind project was uniquely developed by The Hobbit Trilogy filmmakers and Tourism New Zealand.
Pssst…Just to put things in perspective, the pop-up book spanned across two tennis courts at the Beverly Hills Hilton – whoa!
The spaces in the massive pop-up book included: Laketown – Lake Pukaki, Mt Cook, Hidden Bay – Turoa, Ohakune, Forest River – Pelorus River Marlborough, and Beorn’s House – Paradise, Queenstown.
Truly, I was excited beyond belief by the invite!
Bags packed, I took flight.
During the 6-hour plane ride from New York to LA, I wondered what The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug had in common with this busy mama who has to balance a crazy editorial workload and meetings, in addition to a strong-willed 3 year-old toddler?
I mean, I knew the film was bundled with The Lord of the Rings. I knew the plot centered around some amazingly intelligent Dwarves and Elves, and maybe some evil monsters in an eerie and dark forest. I knew there was a Wizard. Don’t most fantasy movies have a Wizard? I also knew for sure there might be some magic dust, and a destination that these characters were determined to get to. Still and yet, I wasn’t sure how the film tied to my personal interests – other than stunning visuals, which as a creative person – I can appreciate regardless of the platform.
Boy was I wrong.
The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug, as a full fledged body of work very much tied to my life experiences. The movie was reflective of my everyday shuffle as a mom. As I sat in the theaters with a room full of movie buffs and critics, I simply saw my journey. From battles with massive spiders in Mirkwood (which feels like my work commute), to parenting-like lectures from the Wizard Gandalf, (which probably sounds likes me nagging to my kids), I could see exactly how I became one with The Hobbit.
In all honesty, The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug, is filled with twists and turns. There are survivors and casualties. There are monsters and other hard to describe attackers on your heels (you will feel the intensity with the 3-D glasses on). And yes – there are arrows and swords. But even bigger than the action is the theme – which centers around courage and sacrifice, as well as the power of family – regardless if you get along or not.
As parents, we have so much on our plates. And truly, its hard to get that free moment to catch the latest flicks in the theaters. But if you are going to see any movie ending off your year, I suggest this one. The kids will love the adventure and the engaging tug-of-war with the bad guys. But you, as a mom will love the persistence and the determination of the good guys. When you walk out of the theater, while your kids are doing all kinds of karate chops and back flips, you will remember how The Hobbit filmmakers were able to craft an amazing film which seamlessly mirrors the urban struggle of maintaining a family unit in the face of adversity.
The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug is in theaters today.