It is now 12-14-2012 and I have made the firm decision, based on reviews, NOT to see the motion picture that has just been released.
I feel that ONE 3-hour movie could have properly embraced the entire novel just(286 pgs in the paperback). It has been padded out needlessly. Instead of forking over good money to see just part 1 of a trilogy, and dealing with a hearing problem (people in the old 30's films spoke much clearer), I've opted to just re-read the book as Tolkein wrote it (Tolkein authorirzed Ballantine books to do the paperback).
Aw. You know, I liked the movie a lot. There were a few slow spots, but overall I really enjoyed it. It's definitely aimed at us serious fans--it already feels like an 'extended edition'--but it's totally worth watching. Great casting, beautiful music, gorgeous cinematography. And there are all sorts of fun things from the book, like the 'invention of golf' story and the "That's What Bilbo Baggins Hates" song.