Saw it last night finally in full 48FPS 3D and LOVED it. I think my expectations were tempered pretty well going in, based on some of the comments I have read here, but overall I thought it was terrific. Nothing like the train-wreck that was King Kong.
Yeah, it's long, but it didn't FEEL long to me, it seems to pick up momentum as it goes along. I thought the casting was once again very strong, especially Bilbo and Thorin. They both did a great job with those roles.
The soundtrack and cinematography were outstanding as expected...and once again, the breathtaking landscapes of NZ were in full glory. Damn, that's a beautiful country.
The scenes in the Goblin lair were incredible, just so much going on in there I will definitely need to re-watch those scenes many, many times. I also loved the preamble showing Erebor and the dwarf kingdom in the height of its glory. That was really well done.
I can't say I was crazy about Radagast, I just don't see the need to have inserted him in there, and it seems sort of contrived especially showing up just after Gandalf has explained who he is. Rabbit-sled? Hrmm.
I did enjoy the scenes with Galadriel and Saruman in Rivendell, although none of that stuff happens in the book. I guess they are going to make a more robust sub-arc showing what Gandalf does when he splits apart from the group in the next movie, so they had to set that up somehow.
The songs were mostly Ok I think. "That's What Bilbo Baggins Hates" was comical enough, and the "Under the Mountain" song the dwarves sing right after that was freaking awesome. But the Goblin-song just seemed silly and sort of out of place to me. Kinda wish they would have cut that.
Like the singing, the voice work was the other thing I was most curious to see how they handled. EVERYONE talks in the freaking book, even the Wargs and Eagles. I was glad they kept those two silent in the movie. I wasn't so crazy about the trolls, I always think back to the cave troll in Moria which was just a mindless brute so it was odd to hear them breaking out the Cockney accents. No real way around that one though. The thing that bothered me most was the Goblin King's voice. Just not scary or imposing at all. Guy just comes off as a corpulent clown.
Jackson got way more right with this movie than wrong though, so any complaints I would voice at this point would be pretty minor.
One thing that troubles me though - that very last scene. WHY DOES SMAUG LOOK BLUE?!?! I am REALLY hoping that it just some funky lighting going on because that needs to be one full-on bright RED dragon.