Over a decade has now passed since the release of the final chapter in Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings adaptations, and now we're getting ready to watch the final chapter in Jackson's second Middle-earth trilogy, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. Picking up immediately after the end of the previous film, The Battle of the Five Armies will see Laketown under attack by Smaug and various forces converging to try and claim the treasure inside the Lonely Mountain.
The Battle of the Five Armies is being touted as a "defining chapter," though whether that means the defining chapter of the Hobbit trilogy or the defining chapter of the entire cinematic Tolkien canon is unclear. One of the major additions made to the plot in this adaptation is the introduction of Sauron and foreshadowing for The Lord of the Rings, so it seems that The Battle of the Five Armies will be tasked with both closing out Bilbo Baggins' adventure and documenting the early days of Sauron's rise to power.
The Middle-earth movie franchise has featured some truly great poster artworkin the past, and as the marketing for The Battle of the Five Armies heats up Warner Bros. has been steadily dropping a vast number of posters and banners for the movie. Last week we rounded up the latest batch of character posters, but since then the studio has released even more scenes of the film's main players in various moments of peril. Check out the latest posters below, and tell us which ones you'd post like to pin up on the walls of your hobbit hole.
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Two of the posters appear to be trying to play up the idea that Gandalf will die in the battle, which isn't all that convincing since it's common knowledge that he is one of the main players in The Lord of the Rings. Those who have read the book will already be aware that not everyone survives its final act, though of course we shouldn't discount the possibility that Jackson might end up making changes to the plot. After all, The Hobbit didn't feature an inter-species love triangle, but that somehow ended up being a fairly major subplot in The Desolation of Smaug.
So far the Hobbit films haven't received quite the swathe of critical praise that was bestowed upon The Lord of the Rings, with particular complaints aimed at the fact that a 300 page book is being spread out over the same running time as a novel trilogy that's well over three times as long. The fact that the description of the battle in Tolkien's book is so brief means that the film will end up having to take a lot of creative license with it, but will this "defining chapter" end The Hobbit on a strong note?
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies opens in theaters on December 17th, 2014.