"You’ve seen his King Kong. Now prepare for Peter Jackson’s Donkey Kong. About an hour into the raucously entertaining middle slab of the Hobbit trilogy, having already tangled with hissing arachnids, a fearsome bear-man and sundry other perils, our posse of undersized heroes clamber into wooden casks and are lobbed into what’s not so much an action sequence as an unrelenting pile-up of lunatic, barrel-based gags. As they rocket down-river, pursued by elves and orcs (who are simultaneously waging war in the branches above), oak cylinders fly at the camera, plunge down fizzing waterfalls and bounce off rocks to scatter servants of evil like skittles. As rousing and inventive as Kong’s triple-T-Rex face-off, this multi-million-dollar flume ride is — with apologies — barrels of fun. And to think that at this stage in the last film, the dwarves were still loading the dishwasher."