An improvement on an already flawless film,
This review is from: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (Four-Disc Special Extended Edition) (DVD)
I'm so glad I waited almost three (painful) months to buy the Extended Edition instead of the theatrical version. I think the DVD cut of the film it's a hundred times better than the original release. The latter, although three hours long, felt rushed when you compared it with the pacing of the book. Now, with all the new sequences and a few more lines in the scenes we've already seen, it's an even more faithful adaptation of JRR Tolkien's world to the big screen.
Discs 1 & 2 contain the 3:30 hour film split in two. This is the only thing I must complain about. It looks like the major drawback LaserDisc is coming back from the grave (they did the same to "The Godfather II"). What ever happened to "DVDs have a storage capacity of over 4 hours of superior quality video"? Yes, I know, maybe there wasn't enough room for so many audio tracks (Dolby Digital, DTS and commentaries) and so many cool menus, and maybe the only way to preserve the (very) high quality of audio and video of this movie was to separate it in two, but I really hate having to get up from my comfortable sofa, turn the lights on and change the disc. They better come up with some kind of solution before the Extended Edition DVD of "The Two Towers" is ready.
Discs 3 & 4 contain around 7 hours of behind-the-scenes documentaries and demonstrations that go into every little detail of the production stage, from conceptual art to the premiere day in Middle-Earth (yes, there was a place in this planet called "Middle-Earth" in December 2001... watch the documentary!) Being a die-hard fan of Star Wars it's very difficult for me to say this but... the extra material in these discs outdoes, by a really-truly-very-long shot, everything in the DVDs of Episodes I and II together. There, I said it.
I truly recommend the Extended Edition DVD over the original theatrical release DVD. Save up just a few extra bucks and go for it.