Some viewers have been repeatedly disappointed by the film adaptations of both The Lord of the Rings and now The Hobbit. J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantastic fantasy books left little to no room for female characters, leaving some viewers feeling isolated. Even Cate Blanchett’s character, Galadriel, did not belong in The Hobbit, but the heavy-male production was starving for some estrogen. Now that The Hobbit has been the number one movie out for the past three weeks, some people are questioning why Tolkien had no interest in adding more female characters.
“The film opens in the nice domestic setting of hobbit Bilbo Baggins’ cozy home. Bilbo has a story to tell his young nephew or cousin — the relationship and intermediary relatives are unclear — named Frodo. We are introduced to the plight of the dwarf king Thorin, who is identified as “the son of Thráin, the son of Thrór.” Thorin’s precious-mineral-based kingdom was ransacked and occupied by a dragon and he wants it back. A wizard named Gandalf appoints Bilbo to help and soon a whole bunch of short men show up on his doorstep. They all set off into enemy territory, and about two-thirds in we finally meet someone without a Y chromosome, an elf princess played by Cate Blanchett who can read Gandalf’s mind. Although she’s on screen for only about five minutes, I was so grateful that it didn’t even bother me that her main character trait is that she’s intuitive. I have since found out that she doesn’t even appear in the book of The Hobbit but was added to the movie because, in the words of one screenwriter, “You start to feel the weight of 13 hairy dwarves.”
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