Newswire: Fan edit cuts The Hobbit trilogy down to a mere four hours

Scarcely a month after the release of The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies, someone has recut the nearly eight-hour Hobbit trilogy into a single 4.5-hour film. The maverick behind this edition, known only as “tolkieneditor,” revealed the project (and provided a link for download) in a WordPress blog post.

While some might guess that the self-made auteur is taking a page from Steven Soderbergh’s playbook, it’s important to remember that Soderbergh mostly tinkers with films that he professes to love. Meanwhile, “tolkieneditor” claims to be fixing an imperfect story marred by “an interminable running time, unengaging plot tangents, and constant narrative filibustering.”

The accompanying statement mentions that some portions of the trilogy were left untouched—such as the “Riddles in the Dark” scene and the introduction of Smaug—as director Peter Jackson satisfied the fan editor with those more intimate, tension-filled moments. However, the hatchet …

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