I just want to say that I enjoyed it, as I knew I would, but I don't think it was the best of the series. I still feel Fellowship was the emotionally strongest. The visuals of all 3 movies were fantastic, especially Return, but there was just something about the first of the trilogy that made it feel so incredible. I admit that leaving the Scouring of the Shire out of the movie didn't hurt it in the least. It would really have dragged the movie out, more than it already was, and having such an exciting finish (with the killing of Saruman, taking back the Shire, etc.) would have competed too much with the Ring's plummet into Mount Doom. The movie could have been a lot shorter had half of it not been in slow motion. Now, I know it was used for emotional effect, but Jesus. Several parts would have had more of an effect had it not been used so much. This is a very minor grievance, and I think it worked out OK. Just an observation. Another minor problem I had was that some of the acting tried a little too hard to provoke emotion or importance. I felt in some of the scenes a natural/genuine reaction would have incited just as much emotion and wouldn't have seemed so hokey. That leads me to the whole woman power thing with Eowyn and the Witch King of Angmar. That was annoying. I would have at least tried to film another way to get the same message across without having to have her blatantly announce that she was not a man. We all knew she was going to say something like that, after his remark. I also would have liked them to have kept her identity secret until that scene (like they did in the book). I know people who have read the books would know who it was, but imagine just how more powerful it would have been (had you not read the book) had she taken off her helmet after defeating the Witch King and having her reveal she was a woman? Would have made that scene work a lot better. Also, where were the Wild Men of the Woods? I assume they're leaving that to the extended edition, as I remember their leader (whose name escapes me now) was billed in the cast previously. The same with the Mouth of Sauron (who was supposed to be played by Bruce Spence AKA the Gyro Pilot in Mad Max and the Trainman in The Matrix: Revolutions). He was once billed in the cast on IMDb, and no longer is. Anyway, I thought the movie to be more than adaquate to fulfill the movie trilogy to a series that was long ago deemed "unfilmable". Kudos to Jackson for what he has accomplished. Some random thoughts: Was anyone else reminded of The Empire Strikes Back during the part of the Battle of the Pelannor with the Olephaunts? Like how they were taking them down, particularly the scene where Legolas jumps up on one and starts attacking it a-la Luke Skywalker and the AT-AT? All he needed was a lightsaber and a thermal detonator And is Christopher Lee going to take a pay cut? He wasn't in the theatrical release AT ALL. Also, if I'm not mistaken, didn't Gandalf fight someone outside Minas Tirith one on one? At first I thought I remembered it being the Witch King, but I don't think that was it. Who was it?