The Lord Of the Rings: The Two Towers Peter Jackson

The Lord Of the Rings: The Two Towers Peter Jackson
Peter Jackson may now sleep on a pile of money, but he's not a jerk about it. He makes producing two different editions of each of his Lord of the Rings trilogy as worthwhile as possible, to those who don't give a rat's ass about seeing another 40 minutes of the films, and to those who will painstakingly devour every moment of each edition. And yet what's remarkable about the anticipation not only for a special extended version of The Two Towers, but also the building excitement over Return of the King's arrival a month later, is that none of this is a surprise. The trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien is hardly obscure after all. Undaunted by the expectations of fans — indeed, fully ready to embrace and fulfil them as one himself — Peter Jackson manages to be both comprehensive and accessible, and this first edition of The Two Towers is an excellent example. There's no commentary here. That's for angry loners and unemployed alcoholics — who else has time to sit through a near four-hour film and listen to people blah, blah about it? A making of documentary is really quite serviceable, dabbling in the four-month night shoot (second unit, by the way, or is that too film-geeky?) to create the Helm's Deep battle, some coverage of Andy Serkis (Gollum) splashing in a river and calling it "acting" — even though special effects just covered him up later. There's a bit of overlap with another making of documentary that includes things that are big made small (John Rhys Davies) and things that are small looking big (really large miniatures, Hobbits' feet). There's a trailer for another edition of a film you've already bought, thank you suckers, but it looks good, and another for Return of the King, in which something apparently happens with Aragorn — I haven't read the books and wasn't paying much attention. Sean Astin (Samwise) gets to show off what a fancy-looking short film he can make with access to state-of-the-art multi-million dollar feature film cameras and a crew of talent longer than my arm. The making-of for the short film — in which Bus Driver Peter Jackson gets huffy over his performance and Second A.D. Andy Serkis bucks for a promotion only to discover working is hard — is much more entertaining than the short itself. But the biggest advantages to this DVD: bragging to your friends that you've got it first, completing the collection after you got suckered into buying two editions the first time when you had no idea how over-the-top cool the Special Edition was going to be, and when you've got a hankering for some Orc but you only have, say, three hours to kill instead of four. This first version is going to come in real handy. Plus: lordoftherings.net featurettes, videos, more. (Alliance Atlantis)