For the past three years it has become somewhat of a Christmas break tradition to see one of the Lord of the Rings movies in theatre. I managed to be at the opening night of all three releases. Obviously, that was not possible this year. Instead, in what may be a new tradition, Bob, Kier and I sat down to watch all three of the extended editions back to back last Thursday. We started at noon and finished just a few minutes before 1:00AM.
The extended edition of the The Return of the King is about four hours and twenty minutes long. That’s fifty minutes more than the theatrical release. After watching the movie I really don’t know where all of those fifty minutes were added. The additional footage in Return of the King seems much less obvious to me than it did with the Fellowship of the Ring and Two Towers extended editions.
If you can set aside the rather large amount of time required to watch all three movies I highly recommend it. Besides being a relaxing day there is also a great sense of continuity watching the movies together.