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This expansive 4-disc DVD set takes viewers further into "The Return of the King".

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Almost perfect

  • Mar 6, 2008
  • by
Rating:
+5
Rare is the movie that one can say has everything. Hollywood used to produce these during the 1960's; classics like Ben-Hur, Cleopatra, Spartacus, and The Ten Commandments. But even these pale to the 4.5 hour epic that is Return of the King. The latter has everything; comedy, romance, action, suspense, drama, a great soundtrack, incredible cinematography, unrivaled special effects, a grand cast, and of course; a happy ending. Unlike other epic movies, this one contains numerous scenes that are of a climactic quality; whether it be the Ring's destruction; the triumphant charge of the Rohirrim on Pelennor Fields, the lighting of the torches from Gondor to Rohan, or even Faramir's charge at the behest of his father. The entire movie makes for an incredible emotional roller coaster. And unlike its two predecessors; this one did get Best Picture, along with 10 other Oscars; all of which were well deserved.

Now that I have heaped the praise, lets point out what could have been improved. First and foremost; for the length of the movie; it leaves out a lot of important material from the book. Better for the story and for the critics to include everything from the book, and brake it up into two separate movies. Conclude the first one with the death of Theoden, and include Sharky's (Saruman) conquest of the shire.

A second letdown was Faramir's defense of Osgiliath during the invasion of Sauron's army. It was portrayed very poorly. From the Fellowship of the Ring up to this point, one gets the feeling that Boromir was the swordsman who preferred intimate conflict while Faramir was the archer who'd rather act from afar. Yet when Faramir prepares his men to repel the Orc amphibious invasion, he has his men take up swords and fight on ground level. A more appropriate defense would be for the men to take refuge on the rooftops and decimate the invading orcs with arrows; nearly all the Gondorian soldiers had bows and arrows. They would have lasted a lot longer, and might have even repulsed the invasion.

The third major failing was Aragorn's triumphant entry onto Pelennor Fields with the Army of the Dead. It seems as if the orcs just line up to be killed by Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli. This contrasts greatly with every previous battle scene where the orcs are quite vicious and skilled in combat.

But for all its failings, this is probably the best movie released this decade; and by far the best movie to be directed by a non-American. My favorite part of this movie was its soundtrack. It is quite rare for an action movie to have memorable singing parts; this one had two. The first is by Merry in probably the most haunting scene of the movie. The second is by Aragorn on his coronation. Legend has it that both actors came up with the music themselves; a proud achievement for both of them if true. All in all, a great movie, a great DVD set, and a must own.

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More The Lord of the Rings: The Ret... reviews
Quick Tip by . August 08, 2010
Excellent, life-changing cinematography and storytelling. Be ware of the dead-folks though, they're not in the novel (in any big way), and seem to not quite fit the way they've been added.
Quick Tip by . June 02, 2010
Peter Jackson did a great job with this.
review by . September 24, 2009
   The only thing bad I can say about this movie is that I didn't want it to end! Just as good as the first two (I wonder why this was the only one to win Best Picture). If you are unfamiliar with the books then some of the suspense may overwhelm you, especially one of the climatic scenes between Sam, Frodo and Smeagle and the Ring.    Some of the band fall and you wonder when things get bleak if Aragon will indeed return as king. I don't want to give it a way but some ghosts …
Quick Tip by . September 30, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
The singular most impressive film series in history takes viewers deeper into Peter Jackson's epic "The Return of the King" in this DVD!
review by . December 14, 2004
posted in Movie Hype
There really isn't anything else I can about the Peter Jackson's movie THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING that hasn't been said before. The movie is the 3rd part of the most ambitious cinematic gamble in movie history which not only payed off, but payed off big time. This 4 DVD box set comes in a nifty blue-colored case and concludes the story that began with THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING. Like it's predecessors, it's chock full of extras and includes almost an hour's …
review by . October 13, 2004
posted in Movie Hype
The only thing bad I can say about this movie is that I didn't want it to end! Just as good as the first two (I wonder why this was the only one to win Best Picture). If you are unfamiliar with the books then some of the suspense may overwhelm you, especially one of the climatic scenes between Sam, Frodo and Smeagle and the Ring.  Some of the band fall and you wonder when things get bleak if Aragon will indeed return as king. I don't want to give it a way but some ghosts play a big part …
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Newton Ooi ()
Ranked #171
Hi everyone, so here is the rundown of me. I like reading and writing, nonfiction for both. I love movies, especially original ones. I like nonfiction music, eating out, and basketball. I love to travel, … more
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Details

Director: Peter Jackson
Genre: Action, Adventure, Classics, Drama, Fantasy
Release Date: Dec. 1, 2003 (Wellington New Zealand Premiere); Dec. 17, 2003 (U.S. Premiere)
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Runtime: 250 minutes
Studio: New Line Cinema, Wingnut Films
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