Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug is on Solid Ground

Plus, Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas wasn't screened for critics, and American Hustle and Saving Mr. Banks are Certified Fresh.

by | December 13, 2013 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a journey through Middle-earth (The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug, starring Martin Freeman and Ian McKellen) and some yuletide shenanigans (Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas, starring Tyler Perry and Kathy Najimy). What do the critics have to say?



The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug

74%

OK, so here’s the bad news: critics say The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug is overlong and overstuffed with characters and subplots that are likely to mean little to all but the most devoted of Tolkien fans. The good news? They also say it’s a step up from An Unexpected Journey, in that it’s better paced and more action-packed. This time, our heroes Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) and Gandalf (Ian McKellen) are on a journey to Lonely Mountain, encountering giant spiders, elves, and a human/bear hybrid as part of their mission to wrest control of a lost Dwarf kingdom from Smaug, a terrifying dragon. The pundits say the first two Hobbit movies have yet to approach the depth and sweep of the Lord of the Rings films, but Smaug mostly succeeds as both a middle chapter and a rousing fantasy adventure in its own right. (For lots more on The Desolation Of Smaug and the LOTR films, check out Hobbit Headquarters.)



Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas

20%

A Madea Christmas, like most of Tyler Perry’s output, was not screened for critics prior to its release in theaters. When an old friend decides to pay a surprise visit to her daughter, she talks Madea (Perry) into tagging along; soon our irrepressible heroine is shaking up a small town’s Christmas carnival. Time to guess the Tomatometer!

Also opening this week in limited release:

Tag Cloud

71st Emmy Awards ABC Warner Bros. Quiz sequels scary movies The Purge festivals BAFTA dc Nat Geo Extras Trivia cops best 2017 Calendar Best and Worst Ovation aliens BET Marvel quibi Disney trailers Amazon Prime TLC australia CW Seed fresh A24 festival Legendary Podcast CBS All Access strong female leads 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards VOD documentary hispanic christmas movies FOX emmy awards Lucasfilm canceled cats Video Games OneApp IFC true crime king kong ghosts Anna Paquin HBO Go YouTube Premium Disney Plus Lifetime Christmas movies Tumblr Lionsgate Columbia Pictures Stephen King talk show franchise Hear Us Out YouTube thriller binge directors Writers Guild of America Discovery Channel nature Amazon jamie lee curtis Creative Arts Emmys police drama television dark werewolf natural history diversity First Reviews MSNBC screenings Comedy Reality Comics on TV Superheroe kong Musical Paramount Network Reality Competition foreign X-Men harry potter archives Cartoon Network breaking bad james bond medical drama 2021 green book Black History Month travel Valentine's Day TNT TV disaster The Walking Dead rom-coms CMT pirates of the caribbean USA Holidays TBS reviews Amazon Studios Freeform ESPN rotten Film Festival chucky richard e. Grant telelvision Mindy Kaling AMC fast and furious TCA Awards Rocky Hulu Premiere Dates twilight The CW Exclusive Video zombie golden globe awards VICE YouTube Red tv talk stand-up comedy USA Network FXX independent 21st Century Fox 2018 Animation Action Trailer comic Winter TV adventure TV One Funimation 2019 kids ABC Signature National Geographic boxing SXSW mission: impossible godzilla theme song zombies SundanceTV Lifetime rotten movies we love Mary Tyler Moore documentaries Netflix Christmas movies crossover toronto batman Family DC Universe remakes prank DirecTV Pet Sematary technology slashers Emmy Nominations TCA Winter 2020 reboot MCU Disney+ Disney Plus renewed TV shows Rocketman transformers finale scorecard facebook GIFs Infographic Tubi Superheroes Set visit Dark Horse Comics BBC Bravo kaiju unscripted Nickelodeon Pirates Epix cars versus children's TV social media teaser ITV deadpool jurassic park nbcuniversal PBS Walt Disney Pictures robots Peacock NYCC indie biography screen actors guild revenge PaleyFest Film Super Bowl ABC Family Rom-Com MTV Teen TruTV concert San Diego Comic-Con Binge Guide Apple justice league stop motion Vudu Comedy Central supernatural Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Apple TV+ Acorn TV Rock spanish language Mystery CNN adaptation classics movies New York Comic Con Adult Swim Oscars universal monsters GLAAD war boxoffice Shondaland Classic Film E3 Shudder docudrama parents Song of Ice and Fire Pop TV Character Guide Drama romantic comedy Crackle Mudbound serial killer The Witch Captain marvel Pixar Starz cults 45 all-time Summer LGBT hidden camera Paramount Alien cartoon video series Spectrum Originals A&E casting dogs streaming halloween science fiction video on demand Disney streaming service monster movies sitcom The Academy Syfy Musicals Sony Pictures spinoff Horror news politics Schedule Grammys Showtime WarnerMedia Fox Searchlight movie FX on Hulu Fantasy football razzies The Walt Disney Company Brie Larson Photos superhero President Crunchyroll spy thriller Nominations Mary poppins Thanksgiving TIFF Sundance Now cancelled TV shows laika 2016 Academy Awards Pride Month OWN game of thrones Toys book Elton John worst movies TV Land hist blaxploitation child's play romance Disney Channel comiccon CBS crime drama Polls and Games Amazon Prime Video RT History Hallmark Christmas movies die hard Kids & Family American Society of Cinematographers comic books Cannes Fox News spanish docuseries comedies political drama anime free movies Hallmark Christmas FX TCA 2017 TV renewals BBC America toy story Fall TV See It Skip It GoT animated historical drama Winners ID Esquire zero dark thirty comics Watching Series golden globes YA psychological thriller Holiday Awards name the review Awards Tour Arrowverse E! based on movie period drama Ellie Kemper spain canceled TV shows LGBTQ The Arrangement popular south america Countdown Cosplay cancelled TV series Universal Turner Pop Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt joker DC streaming service 007 cinemax Endgame Spring TV 2015 History HBO 20th Century Fox Women's History Month 72 Emmy Awards Paramount Plus Tarantino APB 24 frames Martial Arts 4/20 sports Sci-Fi Opinion latino Marvel Studios ratings venice Sundance BET Awards First Look TCM Heroines psycho singing competition Music RT21 ViacomCBS Interview El Rey Ghostbusters Year in Review hollywood game show Certified Fresh witnail worst NBC TCA Tomatazos discovery a nightmare on elm street Baby Yoda indiana jones 99% space Trophy Talk crime mutant Marvel Television Television Academy italian dceu rt archives Chernobyl dramedy HBO Max blockbuster asian-american Masterpiece Television Critics Association nfl Spike blockbusters SDCC Netflix vampires Travel Channel Sneak Peek PlayStation Comic Book critics satire Box Office IFC Films Emmys what to watch Avengers Britbox Sundance TV Broadway VH1 stoner Biopics award winner Black Mirror halloween tv cancelled doctor who Red Carpet Food Network Country sag awards cancelled television obituary women Star Trek anthology Logo Apple TV Plus Turner Classic Movies cooking Mary Poppins Returns composers japanese elevated horror criterion BBC One Star Wars crime thriller films mockumentary french spider-man Western 2020 sequel Election dragons superman DGA DC Comics WGN black miniseries Marathons