Wednesday, January 28, 2015


Sound Editing - Brent Burge and Jason Canovas

So let's just begin with a quick reminder of what the art of sound editing or sound design is.  Sound editing takes previously recorded audio elements like dialogue and sound effects and uses sound to establish the ambience of the film.  Sometimes audio elements are deconstructed or reconstructed to give the exact sound that the designer is attempting.  Sound editing is a very technical skill and you can bet that manipulating sound in a film with dragons, warring  armies, and dialogue is no small challenge.  War movies and musicals do very well in this category.

This Hobbit film is the third in the trilogy where Peter Jackson took a short book and turned it into three movies.  At the end of the book, all of the factions in the land are warring over control of the Lonely Mountain and all of the gold therein.  The interesting thing about this film is that it examines very real, very human themes - does power corrupt, is there a difference between justice and fairness, what is important to defend to the death and what requires compromise, can the little guy make a difference, what is bravery? The problem with the film is that true to its name, the majority of it is fighting scenes which means not that much actual storytelling.  This, of course, is the difficulty of taking a short book and making it into three long films - by the end, you have to make a whole movie out of the climax, and that's not easy to do.  Because of that, this is the weakest of the trilogy.  But, if you are a Peter Jackson/Lord of the Rings groupie, this will be a very satisfying experience as it brings the Hobbit tale to its conclusion.

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