Tuesday, 25 May 2004

Nothing like a well-made DVD package to make a 200-minute film bearable. I wasn't a huge fan of the second film in the LOTR trilogy, and this third film's definitely long, but you have to hand it to 'em - pretty amazing what they did with all three films.

By the way: Why anyone would want to watch this film in the cropped, “full-screen” version is beyond me, but it's available if you're into that kind of thing. But I think they should make cropped versions illegal or something. Well maybe not actually illegal, but stop shipping them, they suck. Granted, not everyone has the home theater projector setup that I recently dropped some cash on (I need to post more about that and why it's a good idea and most cost-effective), but arbitrarily cropping a film is about as blasphemous toward the filmmaker as one can be, if you ask me. It's probably the former photographer in me that thinks that, but hey it's art, and I think one should enjoy it the way it was meant to be seen.

Anyhow, as I was saying, this is a film that was born to be seen on DVD as well as in a theater, and it's good that videotape is a thing of the past. Between the great (okay, awesome) CG work (Gondor is pretty incredible and the battles are amazing), the terrific enhanced digital surround sound, and the fact that you can actually pause it to take a [insert bathroom metaphor here] in the middle without missing anything (200 minutes is a long time, man...), this is a hi-def showcase film.

There's really only one thing about these three films that drives me freaking crazy: Every other scene is a cut over to Sam and Frodo climbing up or down some rocky slope of varying grade, and upon closer inspection, each of these scenes are essentially the same:

< Scene cut to Sam and Frodo and possibly Gollum >

Sam:  Ohhhhhh, Frodo!

Frodo:  Ohhhhhh, Sam!

Sam:  Ohhhhhhhhhh, Frodo!

Frodo:  Ohhhhh, SAM!

Gollum:  Hurry, hobbitses, Hurry! Come! Come!

Now that I think about it, the script reads a little bit like a (very) bad adult film out of context, but that's not my point. What I mean to say here is that I wish they had taken the Sam and Frodo characters' development a little further, past their simple and incessant whining about how sorry their situation is, over and over and over and... Anyhow, we got the point already. Or maybe it's just me, I dunno. I realize it's all about two little guys succeeding at the improbable, but sheez... Anyhow, I digress...

In contrast, the Merry and Pippin hobbit characters are more developed in this one, which was good.

Recommended. Fun film, and other than whiny “hobbitses” and the weird talking trees making a cameo return appearance, pretty darn cool. My sub-woofer got a real workout.

If you like movies that are meant to be played loud at home on your super-duper surround system, and if you like dark battles and stuff, it's a treat. And if you're still into this LOTR stuff at this late date, they have some cool screen savers and other stuff you can download.

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Tuesday, 25 May 2004 21:34:42 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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