Will Gandalf ever cast another spell? (A: Yes)

In 2012's The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Bilbo Baggins and a bunch of mostly interchangeable dwarves set out to slay a dragon. In 2013's The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, the small heroes eventually reach the dragon's lair. In the first 15 minutes of the brand-new The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, the dragon is quickly dispatched, and after eight-plus hours of buildup based on roughly 300 pages of book, the remaining two-plus hours of this film depict a war over who gets to keep all of the dragon's treasure. recommended

This is a three-part review of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. For part two of this review, "The Elaboration of the Theme," click here. For part three, "The Third and Final Part," click here.