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When the first film in the Lord of the Rings trilogy hit the cinema in December of last year, it was met with unprecedented acclaim, and went on to many awards in both the British Academy awards and the Oscars. Now this epic film has hit the DVD market, and has a lot to live up to.
If for some reason you missed the film in the cinema, the film follows the story of Frodo Baggins, a Hobbit from the Shire, who inherits a ring. It soon emerges that the ring in his possession is the one ring, forged by the dark lord Sauron, who only needs to regain this one ring to cover the world in a second darkness. Frodo must then leave the comfort of the Shire in an effort to keep the one ring out of the hands of Sauron and his henchmen.
The main story is truly a masterpiece, although in my opinion the first half of the film is rather rushed, missing a large chunk of the story from the book, but in this case it is understandable as the film itself is almost three hours long, and if it were any longer could be classed as being too long for the cinema, however Peter Jackson is trying to make amends for this by releasing a special extended edition in November, so if you are planning on getting this version it may make you have second thoughts about getting the standard version which is out now.
The DVD would be a classic just with the main feature, but in addition to this a second bonus DVD is included which contains around 2 hours of extra features, including three documentaries on the production of the first film, numerous featurettes, trailers from the film, Enya's "May it Be" music video, and most importantly, a 10 minute behind the scenes preview of the next film in the trilogy, The Two Towers, which is exclusive to this DVD and will not be featured in the extended DVD.
The story is a flawless masterpiece, and although some of the detail has been lost in the book what is in the film is perfectly presented, and is more than enough to make this the best fantasy film ever created - at least until The Two Towers comes along.
A couple of the features repeat parts of each other, but with around 2 hours of high quality extras, it is an added bonus, although if you really want more features wait for the extended edition, which promises to contain 6 hours of extra footage.
The decision is not whether to get the film or not, but which version of the film to get. The extended edition features half an hour of additional scenes from the film, plus triple the amount of extras, but will be slightly more expensive than this version, plus you will have to wait till November for the extended edition. The easy decision is just to buy both versions, as some of the extras are unique to each version.
Review and DVD details written by Julian33 on 11/08/02. If you want to find out more about The Lord of The Rings trilogy then you can visit his joint website with a friend at Pelennor Fields

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