Bilbo Baggins lives a quiet and extremely ordinary life as expected of a Hobbit of his age. Played by Martin Freeman, Bilbo is surprised and alarmed by the sudden appearance of Gandalf the wizard played by Ian McKellen who proposes to take Bilbo on an adventure. Being a respectable Hobbit, Bilbo refuses Gandalf's request and dismisses the old wizard.
Later that evening, what Bilbo believes to be uninvited dwarves begin to arrive demanding dinner. Bilbo's ample pantry and patience are both exhausted quickly by the dwarves antics. Bilbo is presented with a written contract for his services as a burglar. Thorin played by Richard Armitage explains the adventure to take back their home from a fire breathing dragon. Bilbo refuses the contract and faints.
Morning arrives to find Bilbo's house restored to pre-dwarf condition, and the uninvited guests departed. While Bilbo delights in finding his home restored to respectability, he suddenly realizes that he does want to have an adventure and runs after the group.
Along the way the wizard and the dwarves battle Orcs, worgs, and trolls. Bilbo fights with his own doubts, the dwarves doubts, and doubts of powerful elves about his usefulness to the group of adventurers. Bilbo soon proves that he is a valuable asset by using his intellect and his sword to get them out of difficult situations.
In the course of these adventures, Bilbo becomes separated from the dwarves and makes his way down lower in the orc caves. There, Bilbo meets Gollum played by Andy Serkis and finds a gold ring that Gollum has accidentally dropped.
Based on the book, The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, director Peter Jackson brings a three part series based on Tolkien's work.