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Blu-ray Review: New Packages For Extended Editions of ‘The Lord of the Rings’

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CHICAGO – Some Blu-ray re-releases are more essential than others. Often they add special features, remaster the video and/or audio, or offer previews of new films that might be related. There’s little of any of that with the new, repackaged, stand-alone Blu-ray versions of “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, three releases that are simply must-own…unless you already own them.

HollywoodChicago.com Blu-ray rating: 5.0/5.0
Rating: 5.0/5.0

It’s a simple question — Should you upgrade from your “The Lord of the Rings” box set with the HD versions of the Peter Jackson trilogy or not? The answer is no. These releases only include new packaging and Ultraviolet digital copies, which, sadly and bizarrely, are only available in Standard-Definition. Yes, you read that right. The Blu-ray releases of “The Fellowship of the Ring” and its two sequels include Ultraviolet versions that are only SD. That’s just silly. So, there’s even less reason to upgrade.

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring was released on Blu-ray on August 28, 2012
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring was released on Blu-ray on August 28, 2012
Photo credit: Warner Bros.

However, if you don’t own these films in HD already than your Blu-ray player simply isn’t doing its job. Not only do the films look absolutely amazing in HD but each film comes weighed down with hours of fascinating special features. Most of the bonus material exists only on standard DVD (which is slightly annoying) but there’s such a wealth of it that it’s hard to complain. Seriously, it’s hard to imagine anyone with any remaining questions about the making of these films after they spend the days going through this material. It’s one of the deepest and most remarkable collections of special features for any series of films ever produced.

It seems likely that the reason there’s a lack of new material here is because it has all been exhausted in the past. There’s nothing more to say and the films look as good as they possibly can. The idea here is clearly to offer new editions of these already-timeless films to get fans pumped up for this fall’s “The Hobbit.” Mission accomplished.

Buy at the WB Shop

And check out this clip after you order:

“The Lord of the Rings” extended editions were released exclusively to Best Buy and the WB online shop on August 28, 2012.

HollywoodChicago.com content director Brian Tallerico

By BRIAN TALLERICO
Content Director
HollywoodChicago.com
brian@hollywoodchicago.com

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