back to article The Lord of the Rings Trilogy: Blu-ray extended edition

26 Hours of extras, 15 discs, 3 movies, one ring. Finally, the extended Blu-ray version of Peter Jackson’s The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy has been released. Time to finally Orc-up and buy. The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy: Extended Edition Long player: The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy – Extended Edition Like many, I steered clear …


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  1. Eponymous Cowherd


    that's my Birthday Present sorted.

  2. Jules75

    Time to double dip

    I already own the extended trilogy on DVD, and as a rule I won't double dip on movies I already own on DVD, but this BR conversion has to be the exception.

    I actually watched all three extended movies back to back once, and it was enjoyable but hard going. I think with these even longer versions, I'll have to split it over a few days.

    1. technome

      Read it again...

      These are the same versions as the extended DVD, but in HD.

  3. John70

    Storage Media

    Looks like the tech companies will have to come up with a new storage media to replace Blu-ray that can put a full extended version on LotR onto 1 disc instead of splitting it over 2 discs.

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      re Storage Media

      Didn't you get the memo?

      You know the one that says getting your grubby little hands on a copy of the file is a thing of the past.

      You know the one where Hollywood will charge you per viewing.

      you know the one where you can only download a DRM'd to oblivion time limited, viewing limited copy for the same price as the DVD?

      Sorry, go and sit on the naughty step.

      I'm off for a beer.

      1. Greg 16

        re Storage media

        Didn't you get the memo?

        You know the one that says getting your grubby little hands on a copy of the file is a thing of the past.

        The one where its totally free.

        Damn - its a big download though!

    2. Anon E Mus

      Discs are only a transport media

      Once you've got the discs I'm sure a little ripping and splicing can be used to put the films back in one piece.

      1. LaeMing Silver badge


        then the disks go into the fire-safe (or at least a moisture-proof container) to stay as pristine as possible (well, it is the box you are keeping away from the moisture, the disks away from scratches and grubby human fingers).

        This is technically illegal, not becasue you made a play-copy to protect origional media, but because you bypassed DRM to do so.

        Sux to be under the machine. :-(

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      400GB PS3...'s-1tb-blu-ray-discs-could-work-in-ps3?=37463

      The Uber upgradable PS3 looks like it might also be fist to be taking on the new high capacity BD disks too...

  4. Jedit

    A note on the extras

    It wasn't mentioned in the review, but the extras in this box (including the commentaries) are the same as those in the original DVD extended edition sets. All this box set does is upgrade the movies to full HD and 6.1 sound.

    That said, the upgrade is very much worth it if you have an AV rig that can handle it.

  5. Ken 16 Silver badge

    So how long is the bloody thing now?

    I fell asleep in the Cinema for 2 out of 3 of the films anyway

    1. Jim 59

      Impossible to sleep

      because all cinema operators set their volume knob to "defeaning".

  6. Fuzz

    2 discs per movie?

    What a joke, 50GB is more than enough room for 4 hours of well encoded HD.

    The container format used on BR is extremely inefficient. If you rip a bluray into MKV with no editing or recoding of the data the files are around 40% smaller.

    1. Citizen Kaned


      is that with true HD sound? or just dolby digital 5.1? there is a huge difference if you have higher quality home cinema.

      also, is the MKV exactly the same image? i dont know much about MKV as i actually buy media still and if i were to store all my blu-ray and dvds on HDDs i would need a server farm ;) around 2500 DVDs and 300 blu-rays.

  7. lawndart

    The Return Of The King

    Do we get Saruman's attempt to take over the Shire?

  8. ulf molin

    That should be...


    1. KroSha

      The Scouring of the Shire

      Nope, because Saruman dies when the Rohirrim take Isengard. The Scouring is only shown is a vision to Frodo when he looks in Galadrielle's Mirror </geek>

      1. ukbabz


        Not in the books.. The ending of the films spoiled it for me, the lack of the scouring of the shire was scouring of the triology..

  9. Graham Bartlett

    Extended edition mostly good

    For Fellowship, the extended version is the "definitive" one. Tons of essential plot and character details cut. Two Towers, the extended version is good too.

    But Return of the King, far too much is gratuitous "look how cool our digital FX are" shots tracking bits of rock being thrown through the air. It does have some important bits of plot - death of Saruman, the Witch-King breaking Gandalf's staff, council of war explaining exactly *why* they were attacking the Black Gate, meeting the Voice of Sauron. But mostly that extra time is FX shots which should have stayed cut.

    1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

      Luddite that I am

      I just read the books. Nothing about Gandalf's staff broken by the Witch-king in there (though only a purist would complain). I only got to see the Fellowship, and liked the more active role given to Arwen, so I will not say all changes are for the worse. I did feel the fighting was a bit much, compared to the more sedate pace of the book. However, if you kept to that pace, the film would have to become a (very long) series.

      Regarding the increased length, Tolkien said in the preface to the book that the main criticism he agreed with is that it was too short.

      1. Jim 59

        Agee with Luddite

        Right on. Gandalf's staff was never originally broken. The witch king just escaped a good shoeing from Gandalf when their confrontation was interrupted at the gate. A dramatic scene that did not, as I remember, make the film.

        I agree with your post and with JRR when he said the book was too short. LOTR shows well the difference between books and films. Both are good, but the film is (has to be) a much more brief, superficial experience. A film made verbatim from a book would be awful. Then again, LOTR is not quite like any other book.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    BD performing miracles?

    Can the extra visual and audio presentation make Elijah Wood act? Can it make Sam lose any weight on a year-long trek halfway across a continent? Can it change the disrespectfully comic Gimli? Can it change Faramir back to an honourable man instead of a traitor? Does it have Tom Bombadil?

    No? Then what's the bloody point? :-\

  11. Ru

    Pre-order the Hobbit?

    That would be daft. You should wait until the original, extended and special editions have all been released, and then wait patiently til the super deluxe edition equivalent to this LotR release goes on sale.

    1. Martin

      Tom Bombadil?

      I was entirely with you until you mentioned that irritating so-and-so.

    2. IsJustabloke Silver badge

      I refuse to enoble a simple forum post!

      I was with you right up to the "Does it have Tom Bombadil?" at which point I wished you a long and painful death to the accompiamnet of stupid ryhming couplets.

      A somewhat controversial view but the books are utter shite... a fantastic story ruined and rendered all but unreadable ( believe me I've tried 5 times!) by stupid fucking "elven poetry", "Dwarven songs" and Tom Bombadil, none of which added a single iota to the overal plot/ story.

      Jackson took the essentail story elements of the books and created the stories that shold have been told.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Two words


      2. Jason Hall


        "rendered all but unreadable"

        To those of you with tiny attention spans, and no feel for the way stories could be told.

        Hundreds of millions(?) of people would argue that they are very readable.

        1. LaeMing Silver badge

          I found the books

          a damned hard slog, but well worth the effort (all 3 times I have read through them).

          1. BoldMan

            They are badly written!

            I've read and re-read them many times when I was younger and then put them aside for decently written books. I read them again when the first movie came out and it reminded me just how bad they are. Tolkien wrote them in the way that sagas were written 500 years ago. There is very little attempt at pacing, proper narrative structure and dramatic tension. The very device of splitting the story into two sections then following each section exclusively as in Tow towers and Return of the King is deeply annoying.

            The blandness of the descriptive passages gets tedious - everything "good" is "silvery" or "golden", everything bad is "black" and "dark". The pointless distractions of "and then they came to xyz which in elvish was named abc, the Numenrorians called 123 and the dwarfs called "gimmemorebeer"" YAWN!! yes I know he was a professor of Medieval English etc but give me a sodding break!

            As for Tom Bombadil, I remember hearing the BBC radio adaptation when it first came out in the early 80s while at University and we all rejoiced that they had skipped Tom Bombadil! What a twat! Its a pointless diversion in the book AND its a plot destroyer... so you spend half a book building up the "Its SO EVIL that none can withstand it!" and then introduce a character almost immediately it has NO EFFECT on! Bang, narrative tension utterly destroyed.

            Finally... Eagles. Why walk all that fucking way through orc infested lands when you could have flown across it on sodding eagles and dive-bombed Frodo into mount doom???

            By the way I also play Lord of the Rings Online and after 4 years play we've still only got as far as Lothlorien, ie end of Vol 1!! Later this year we get Isengard...

            1. Jim 59

              Badly written

              So you hate LOTR but your life has had a large involvement with it: the books, the films, the radio adaptation, the game and now discussing all 4 at some length. In 2000 you read all 1200 terrible pages again, just as a penance, before playing LOTR online for 4 years and still playing. Your whole life is spent in LOTR purgatory. No wonder you hate it.

              Guy, if you are gonna troll, don't go overboard. Special effects are okay but a believable story is more important.

          2. KroSha


            Now try the Silmarillion!

            1. Anonymous Coward


              Good God!

              Now THAT was possibly the single hardest book ive ever had the pleasure of reading, i swear that it was easier reading "Trainspotting" and "Porno" whilst trying to understand all the 'burgh' words


              Good read though, adds a lot to the series, if your capable of reading it that is :)

              here, assuming youve read it, have a pint, i get the feeling there isnt many of us!

              1. Jim 59


                I read the Silmarillion and it was hard. The Silmarillion is more of a reference work, a support structure for the LOTR and Hobit, and as such it is not surprising that JRRT never published it in his lifetime. It wasn't meant to be read as a story IMO.

        2. IsJustabloke Silver badge

          I refuse to enoble a simple forum post!

          no need for rudeness :-)

          I did say it was a somewhat controversial view.

          Very few people have ever found the books anything other than hard work in my experience.

          I tried to read them for the first time when I was 13 ... having been utterly entralled by The Hobbit. LOTR's was a huge let down for me. I've tried several times since..

          fellowship, is a great book (apart from the bits I've already mentioned) , Two Towers is s good book, return is tedious in the extreme.

          Great story, badly executed by a poor writer that would have benefited from a stronger editor.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Blu-ray versions are longer than DVD extended editions

    Special Extended Edition DVD: 682 minutes

    Special Extended Edition Blu-Ray: 726 minutes

    1. Jim_aka_Jim

      An extra 44 mins...

      ... of additional credits for the millions of people thanked for helping put the movie on to BlueRay

    2. Bit Brain

      Difference in running time

      Probably due to the BD versions being 24fps and the PAL DVDs being 25fps.

      1. Martin Eyles

        The rest of the difference in running time

        The slower running speed accounts for about 28 minutes of running time. With the remaining 16 minutes split across three films, does that make 5 minutes of extra credits per film? Perhaps there's just a tiny bit of extra footage, but if not, at least we get some extra music to listen to! :-)

  13. Bassey


    Now I get the other two - they are great films and quite a lot happens. I'm not so enamoured with them to regard them as "landmark" and, already having the original trilogy on DVD for less than a tenner, I have no intention to re-buy them but they are good films.

    But the fellowship? 30 minutes extra? Nothing happens in the original 72-hour cut. The plot is "Small village, wizard arrives. Group sets off with a ring". That is it. Litterally NOTHING else happens. It could have been shown as a five minute short before the second film.

    1. F111F

      You Misssed...

      a Balrog and the fall of Gandalf, the flight/fight in Moria, 2 preciousss Elven women (Tyler, Blanchett), Weathertop, and Hugo Weaving playing the good guy for once.

      Icon for Cate...worth the price of admission alone.

  14. Blake St. Claire


    HD. 6.1 sound?

    I already own the extended editions. I even made the mistake of buying the first FotR before the extended edition came out.

    Tell me where I can send my DVDs for a credit on on the BDs and I might take the bait.

    Oh, and BTW, I already own three copies (original VHS, special edition VHS, DVD) of Star Wars 4, 5, and 6, plus DVD of 1, 2, and 3. When Lucas releases on BD I won't be buying those either. One of these days I need to convert the original VHSs to DVDs, because Han shoots first.

  15. jason 7

    Noooo not a longer Return of the King????

    The cinema version was 30 minutes too long. The perfect ending for that movie with all the build up would have been at the ceremony where he says "no my friends you bow to no man!"

    They all bow the camera pans back aaannnndddddddd CUT!


    But no we get another 30 mins of seat jiffle inducing crap that just kills the ending dead.

    1. jason 7

      People still buy this stuff?

      I've dumped most of my DVD collection as only about 15 of them had been watched more than once. Just not worth it. No BDs for me either.

      Dump your unwatched collection into the charity shop, freeing up space for some other crap, then rent the DVD/BD from the local library for £2.

      Job done.

      1. Blake St. Claire

        Apparently they do

        That seems to be what the long shelves of DVDs in Costco, Best Buy, and elsewhere are for.

        Me? I'm pretty selective about the titles I buy. I only buy titles I know will be watched multiple times and I'm usually content to wait a while for the price to come down. The rest I get from netflix or stream from netflix or hulu. The library? YMBJ. My wife has borrowed books on CD to listen to on trips in the car but they're usually so beat up they're impossible to listen to. Would DVDs be any better? Not sure I can be bothered to drive there and back twice to find out.

        And then some things I own, e.g. Avatar and the Star Trek reboot I have because someone gave it to me as a gift. My wife and kids have a strange sense of what they think I'll like.

      2. David Paul Morgan

        Traded them in...

        ... at CeX. All the bogof's and bogo-half-price some with the wrappers on.

        We only keep the special film collections now and rent by post with Blockbuster.

        Extended versions? I love the novel (except Tom B) but you'll need a special chair and rations to watch this.

    2. Dan Crichton

      ... double tray BD player required??

      @Blake, you could have picked up the SW DVDs that contained two discs per film, one with the special edition and one with the original theatrical cut - the latter not being anamorphic and only 2.0 audio, but much better than a VHS conversion.

      As to LotR, I was looking forward to the BD extendeds because I'm a lazy git and don't want to have to switch discs halfway through the films like I do with the extended DVDs. But thanks to the inclusion of 4 commentaries on each film they've been split across 2 discs each again. I don't give a stuff about commentaries; I'd be much happier with the extended movies on 3 BDs without the duplicated discs from the DVD releases (I've got those already too from the collectors DVD sets as well as Minas Morgul and the King's crown that were available for a limited time from Sideshow with the order form in Return of the King).

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Noooo not a longer Return of the King????

      You see thats the problem, the world that was made around the books was far more complicated than the films could ever portray.

      a film on the books was never going to work and take the full story in to account, perhaps they would have done better to make a film based on the books but do a hollywood special on it. IE change it in to something completely unrecognisable.

      Im totally divided on this one i have to say, it overlooks i,portant parts in the story and also makes a hash of the story in some scenes of the film.

      I suppose, i enjoy watching the parts of the film thats done very well, and try and overlook the parts that are crap ie "Shelob stung Frodo" to name one of many!

  16. Marky W

    Worlds lamest comment

    Had to share the brain-dribblings of this Amazon commentard:


    "I've been waiting a long time to see the complete extended version of Lord Of the Rings on single discs, it was going to be the excuse for me to finally buy a flat screen HD tv and a blue-ray player. Now I'm not going to bother, I'll stick with the orginal version on video."


    Yup, that's right, he's sticking with his VHS and fish-bowl CRT because one third of this trilogy comes on two discs. Tard indeed.

  17. Chris Miller
    IT Angle

    Tolkien Ring Network

    One Node to rule them all

    One Ping to find them

    One LAN to bring them all

    And in the darkness BIND them

    1. Giles Jones Gold badge


      The whole reason DVD took off and VCD didn't was the capacity. VCDs required two discs or flipping the disc.

      This is 2011 and such lame 1990s concepts are outmoded.


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