By Drew Taylor | The Playlist October 29, 2013 at 10:00AM
If you didn't have your fill of Middle Earth adventures with last year's "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," well, you're in luck, because for the next two Christmases we'll be treated with a new J.R.R. Tolkien-inspired odyssey (captured, for some reason, in ultra-fluid 48 fps 3D). The first sequel, "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" (too many definite articles!) will be out this December, and two new TV spots have debuted for the film, which emphasize director Peter Jackson's frantic grasp of action and the connection to the later "Lord of the Rings" trilogy (via Flicks and Bits).
The two spots are pretty similar (you can watch them below), but both do a great job underlining Jackson's calamitous approach to action, with sequences building and then toppling over on themselves (and other, adjoining sequences). Just seeing those elves (or whatever they are) go over that waterfall in those barrels fills us with a certain kind of joy. Another great moment from one of the spots, which is also teased in the longer theatrical trailer, is when Bilbo (Martin Freeman) goes to Gandalf (Ian McKellen) and says, "I found something in the cave." We then flash to him picking up the accursed ring. When Gandalf asks what it was that he found, Biblo clams up and says, "My courage." Gandalf then says that it's good that's what he found, because he's going to need it.
There also seems to be a fair amount of "trilogy bridging" going on in this movie, in an effort to connect this trilogy with the trilogy of "Lord of the Rings" movies that we've already seen (and were perfectly content with, thank you very much). It looks like Legolas (Orlando Bloom) will have a prominent role in this new film. You guys remember Legolas, right?
"The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" opens on December 13th.