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Two Towers delivers quantity but lacks quality extras

You can now have your own set of hobbits to do your bidding, as The Lord of The Rings: The Two Towers makes its way onto store shelves across the country.

Besides the critically acclaimed motion picture, the DVD offers an overwhelming amount of extras, but doesn’t give the viewers something that hasn’t already been seen. The two-disc collection will make a good Friday night rental and is a great buy for those who are too impatient to wait another three months for the extended version.

The Two Towers picks up where The Fellowship of The Ring left off. Frodo and Sam continue their venture to the desolate and dangerous land of Mordor, after being separated from the rest of the fellowship.

Two Towers’ emotional centerpiece is the relationship between Frodo and Sam, both of whom in this chapter enlist help from Gollum.

Gollum is easily the most memorable character and is a result of a breakthrough animation and computer imaging.

And Peter Jackson continues to prove himself as a director by brilliantly capturing the battle of Helms Deep, which is one of the best action sequences ever filmed.

The DVD, just like the first version of The Fellowship of The Ring DVD, is a two disc set. It feels more like an advertisement for the extended four-disc version due out in November. The DVD doesn’t offer much exclusive content, but comes stuffed with various television specials, trailers and other promotional material. Disc one is devoted totally to the feature presentation, so all the special features and extras are crammed onto disc two.

Two TV channels aired Two Towers’ specials prior the film’s December 18 releases. On the Set: The Lord of The Rings: The Two Towers (Starz) serves as a basic plot recap with an abundance of clips from the movie while Return to Middle Earth (The WB) is a more comprehensive journey through the filmmaking process and also has lively cast interviews.

“The Long and Short of it,” by Sean Astin (Sam) is perhaps the most unique feature on the DVD. The story line of the short film has absolutely nothing to do with The Lord of The Rings except for the appearances from two of its cast members.

Rounding out the second disc are the usual promotional materials: theatrical teaser and trailer, an overwhelming 16 TV spots, Return of The King video game preview and a six-minute advertisement for The Two Towers: Extended edition DVD. The best feature this DVD has to offer is a 10-minute “Behind the Scenes Preview of The Return of The King.”

The preview is a mix of never-before-seen footage, interviews and breathtaking clips from the concluding chapter of The Lord of The Rings trilogy.

The Two Towers is a great addition to any collection, preferably to someone who already possesses the Fellowship. But the thrifty fans, may just wait until the November special edition hits stores.