First, a thanks to JaidynLuke Studios for cutting together this entire epic scene from the extended version of the film into a two-parter.
I’m sure it comes as no surprise to anyone who reads this site, that I am an enormous geek. My Star Wars geek creds go back to practically the cradle, but around middle school, I became a hardcore Tolkienite. I read The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, The Book of Unfinished Tales. I own the 12 volume literary examination of Tolkien’s entire body of work that his son, Christopher, edited together. I mean, it got to the point where I not only knew what Quenya was, but nearly listed it as a second language on job applications. No, actually I didn’t date much during high school come to think of it, why do you ask?
I think people who whine about The Hobbit trilogy are a little nuts, to be honest. No, it’s not as good as The Lord of the Rings, but then The Lord of the Rings was named by The New York Times as the greatest book of the 20th Century, so…..whatcha gonna do? The appendices to LOTR and stories in the Book of Unfinished Tales provided ample material to justify three films. I have some issues at the places where the films were cut, but that has a lot to do with the switch from two to three films while they were being made. The point of all of this is, I was extremely excited they were exploring the Necromancer subplot because I knew the culmination of it was the Battle of Dol Guldur.
You have The White Council (Saruman, Gandalf, Galadriel, Radagast and Elrond) talking on all nine Nazgul AND Sauron in an epic battle to save Gandalf’s life. The result is one of my favorite scenes in any of the Middle-Earth movies. In fact, at no point in any of the other films, do you see this kind of power being whomped around and enclosed area. You also see Saruman before his fall and the set up for his fall, plus an appreciation for how powerful Galadriel is that she hauls off and punches Sauron ACROSS THE CONTINENT to Mordor. It makes the possibility of her taking the One Ring from Frodo in The Fellowship of the Ring all the more frightening because you’ve already seen how strong she is without it. To me, this is one of the pinnacles of the saga and the extended cut of it is so much better than the theatrical (as always has been the case with Peter Jackson’s Middle-Earth films).