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The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers - Extended Edition (Blu-ray)

Featuring: Elijah Wood, Billy Boyd & Dominic Monaghan

Format: Blu-ray | Rating: 12 years & over

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  The meat in the sandwich

| | See all jacobitos's reviews (15)

The LotR trilogy is a fine piece of work, full of heart, surprise and wonder. This has been made even more plain since the release of The Hobbit, which is a muddy, cynical, over-long mess, lacking any of the magic on display here (in my opinion). We all know that all three LotR movies are magnificent, with scale and scope (both intimate and epic) and pitch-perfect characterisation, all tacked on to a marvellous story incredibly well-told, but The Two Towers is my personal favourite. Bleaker and darker in tone than the other films in the series, with less of the comedy 'business' between the hobbits and more meat on the bones. And for all those who argue over which is better - the battle of Helm's Deep or the battle of Pelennor Fields (RotK) - I'd argue that the former gave the viewer their first taste of a battle on a scale they hadn't seen before and, as such, it still has the greatest impact.

As for the blu-ray, some of the effects and green-screen work look a bit dated, and this is made that little bit more obvious thanks to the clarity. That said, the transfer is only 'good'. Picture quality is not as crisp as some more exemplary blu-ray releases and for me, this wouldn't be a movie I'd fall back on as an example of just how good this medium can look. But it's not particularly about that - this is (currently) the best way to see and hear this beloved trilogy, and I for one have been sold (all over again).

So why only four stars? Because the only extras you'll get are the commentaries that run alongside the movie. I bought the three extended editions separately, because they worked out a few pounds cheaper than the extended blu-ray boxset (with all of its additional DVD content, crammed with documentaries and behind-the-scenes stuff and outtakes, etc, etc). You won't be getting any of the exhaustive extras here. I suppose I should've checked beforehand. I bought these as a replacement for the extended DVDs I have, but I guess I'll have to hold on to them if I want all of the additional stuff that I would've got with the blu-ray boxset. It might've been worth the few extra quid to have bought that rather than the individual films.

No matter. I still unashamedly love these movies and recommended them wholeheartedly.