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The Theatrical and Special Extended Editions of the film
“For a limited time, experience a new look at Middle-earth with ‘The Lord of the Rings’ Limited Edition DVDs in three separate collectors editions. A must-have for every The Lord of the Rings enthusiast, each of the Academy Award®-winning films will be presented in a two-disc set with a behind-the-scenes documentary exclusive to each limited edition. Disc one presents both the Special Extended Edition and the Theatrical Edition of the film through seamless branching, while disc two features an intimate, never-before-seen documentary created by Costa Botes, the all-access filmmaker commissioned by Peter Jackson. With more than five hours of captivating, never-before-released footage, ‘The Fellowship of the Ring Limited Edition,’ ‘The Two Towers Limited Edition’ and ‘The Return of the King Limited Edition.'”
This film is rated PG-13 for epic battle sequences and some scary images.
Like the previous two documentaries, this is a real in-the-trenches look at the making of the movie. There is a ton of raw footage, interviews with cast and crew, and more. It’s excellent stuff. Notable in this documentary is an ongoing gag by Peter Jackson about a snow machine that they started and just can’t find a way to turn off. Another ongoing joke involves a 3-D camera that Jackson uses on the set, then loses the exposed film for. This documentary has a lot of jokes by the actors, too. One features Ian McKellen donning a feminine bee-hive wig and doing his coronation scene in the film while crowning the “Queen”. You also see Christopher Lee, impaled on a stake, saying, “This is all rather familiar.”
I usually absolutely love the technical documentaries on the making of movies, but I have to admit that these bored me a little. I loved them on the previous LOTR DVD’s, but for some reason I just wasn’t interested in them here. There was also a lot of raw footage of the battle scenes with orcs battling humans, too. It became a tad repetitive, but fans will love it.
This is a great documentary for LOTR fans, but unfortunately, if you want to see all these together then you’re going to have to buy around $90 worth of DVDs. Is it worth it? If you’re wearing pointed elf ears and you speak elvish, then most definitely yes. If you’re just a casual fan, you may just want to rent it or buy a used copy on eBay. It’s a great documentary, but it’s really a question of how much behind the scenes documentaries intrigue you.