Elijah Wood, Sean Astin, Ian McKellen, Ian Holm, Viggo
Mortensen, Hugo Weaving
| Directed By :
Even though this movie has been released on DVD with bonuses,
diehard fans were waiting for this set to come out, which
would give an extended version of the film and promised lots
of extras. As a tribute to the original hardback books, which
came in the hard sleeve cover, this four disc set comes in
likewise packaging. For comments on the original film, visit
the theatrical review.
Extended Film: Even though the original film was three
hours long, it finds itself dwarved by the extended version.
With an extra 30+ minutes of footage that is treated with
the same level of quality that the original film was, viewers
will find a movie that's even more rich than what was shown
in the theatres. And, it's not just a scene or two here and
there - there are tons of scenes that are extended and more
than a few that are totally new. Integrated perfectly, I really
can't imagine the movie without these scenes now that I've
seen them. The film is broken up onto two DVDs that come with
commentary tracks from the cast, director and writers, design
team and the production/post-production team.
The Appendices: On top of the extended film are two
discs packed full with extras. The first disc "From
Book to Vision" covers the creative process from
Tolkien's book to the set and costume design. The second disc
"From Vision to Reality" goes from casting
and filming to the post production. Between the two discs
is easily six hours of interviews and footage taken while
the movie was being created. On top of that, there are tons
of video clips of the story boards and Pre-Viz Animatics and
still photos to keep even the most diehard fan busy for hours
Extras: Along with the four disc set comes another
DVD - National Geographic Beyond the Movie, which manages
to touch on a lot of the themes from the Tolkien biography
found in the third disc. But, Beyond the Movie does
a fine job of going over the the influences that shaped Tolkien's
story. If you ate up the Appendices of Disc 3 and 4, you'll
enjoy this as well, as it provides some of the same info but
from a different perspective. Those who may find themselves
overwhelmed by all the extras in the four disc set may never
even take the time to watch this.
The boxed set also comes with bookends of the Argonath, sculpted
by Mary MacLachlan for Sideshow Weta Collectibles, which are
finely detailed representations of the immense sculptures.
While not too big, they do have a good weight and can be used
practically as well as a stand-alone collectible.
If you didn't get the original DVDs because you were waiting
for this one, be very happy with your decision. If you did
get the original DVDs and are a fan of the movies and books,
you should seriously consider getting this one as well. This
set is the ultimate version and Tolkien fans should go out
and get it. Rarely is a DVD set so all-encompassing and rewarding
for those who waited. If you have a day or two to kill, you
could sit down and watch everything here.