The Blu-ray Files #006
On this special edition of The Blu-ray Files I will be looking at the newly released Lord of the Rings Extended Edition trilogy box set. I will be talking about each movie individually, but I do want to make a comment on the overall packaging itself. This box set is simply outstanding. The box is extravagant and opens with a nifty magnetized box lid. Inside are three individual cases for each of the three movies, each case containing no less than 5 discs. I like that each movie got its own case rather than jsut throwing them all together. I appreciate that touch a lot.
Now for the films themselves:
The Fellowship of the Ring – Finally seeing the LOTR movies in high definition(other than the theater of course) was just great. Fellowship was always my favourite of the trilogy, and for the most part all of the extended scenes here work to great effect. The one issue I had with the picture quality was that the colours seemed less vibrant than I remember, especially the Caradhras mountain slope scene. The high def also made me realize just how often the background is out of focus in this film. Yet the clarity and details of Middle Earth in this first installemtn are incredible. And if you want to see what may be the best image I’ve ever seen Blu-ray bring out, check out the scene where the hobbits hide from the black rider on the road. Phenominal.
The Two Towers – Another phenomenal visual and auditory experience. The black levels are just great, which comes in handy during the Helm’s Deep battle. Its never too dark to get lost, but always dark enough to maintain atmosphere. The details of Rohan and Osgiliath are great and everything here looks just amazing. Its fun to watch for new details that are easier to catch in high definiton, especially in the scene where the ents destroy Isengard.
The Return of the King – I remember when I watched the Lord of the Rings movies on DVD I was always disappointed with the sound. It never felt like the full potential of the audio was there. But now, ahhhhh yeah. Finally I get the full home theater experience with this films I always wanted. The sound is absolutely incredible. And the visuals, well, the visuals are top notch. Pelennor Fields in particular is amazing to behold, as are the great details of Shelob and her lair. As for the extended scenes, I found most of the new scenes added her a distraction more than anything and they didn’t fit in as well as they did for the previous two films.
Overall, this is a blu-ray set which is simply not to be missed.