Lord Of The Rings Theatrical-Edition Blu-Ray Angers Fans

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You might think that the release of The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy on Blu-Ray might be an exciting time for Middle Earth fans. Finally, a chance to see Peter Jackson's legendary trilogy in high definition, and without having to switch discs in the middle, no less! Head on over to the disc set's Amazon page and you'll see that the trilogy, which is scheduled to go on sale on April 6, 2010, has already garnered over 2,083 reviews. But look closer, and you'll find that over 1,800 of those reviews are 1-star only, leaving the overall total languishing at around the 1.5 stars. These reviewers are pissed about something. Hit the jump to hear the nature of their grievances.

Consumers are upset because the discs that are included contain only the theatrical editions of the films, not the extended editions. If you'll recall, each film was originally released in theatrical edition on DVD, followed by a 4-disc extended edition several months later. Jackson has made clear that even though the extended editions contain substantial additions, he does not consider them "director's cuts," since the two versions were made with fundamentally different purposes in mind.

Well, apparently, fans felt like they really got dicked over last time around when they bought both editions. Here is a characteristic review of the disc set (via Kottke):

I DO NOT RECOMMEND BUYING THIS PRODUCT/DVD. This product is being created FOR NO OTHER REASON than to dupe people into buying this movie twice...again. Those of us who were huge fans bought the original DVDs of the theatrical releases. THEN the studio FINALLY released the extended editions, even though they could have released both at the same time. Now that Blu Ray has won the High Def battle, the studios are salivating at screwing us all again the same way! Please do not let them get away with holding the extended edition hostage until everyone buys the theatrical versions.

Clearly, these people are as mad as hell and they're not going to take it anymore. As a DVD buyer, I'm definitely sympathetic to the dreaded double dip. But a lot has changed in the past few years, in terms of the information available to consumers. We already know that there are going to be extended editions available down the line, so hardcore fans can just wait for those if they want.

That being said, warning fellow DVD buyers against a potential double-dip is always a good thing.

Discuss: Will you be buying the Lord of the Rings Blu-Ray (Theatrical Editions)? Or will you hold out for the extended editions? And are the thousands of 1-star reviews a disproportionate response to this Blu-Ray being theatrical-edition only?