The Two Towers is my favorite film of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. While most people either preferred the pitch-perfect styling of the first film, or the epic conclusion of the third, for me I thought the middle chapter stood out in an interesting way. I feel like a lot of the film’s success owed itself to how writer/director Peter Jackson was able to take a book in which little happens and craft it into a satisfying story arc which fit perfectly into the trilogy but also stood alone as a unique accomplishment. He took the handful of major events in the story and fleshed them out, allowing him to focus much more on character and drama and less on sticking to the detail of the text, and it really showed off his (and his team’s) writing skills. I had high hopes that The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, the second film of Jackson’s Hobbit trilogy would follow in the footsteps of The Two Towers, and while it’s definitely an excellent film, it lacks the creativity and emotion of his previous middle movie.