I already own the 2009 Blu-ray (with UK cut of the film). I was planning to get the 2013 10th Anniversary (US cut) but now I'm not going to spend the $10. Reason:
I went through the screenshots of the respective reviews for each version on Blu-ray.com. I found a few screenshots that were of the same scene for each version. They aren't exact matches to the specific frame, but three of them are really close (one of them is VERY close). So, I grabbed the images and threw them into Screenshot Comparison here:
No mouse on the image = 2009 version
Mouse on the image = 2013 version
I find that the 2009 version has an ever-so-slight edge in contrast. The 2013 image is a bit brighter, which results in a very small loss of contrast. That, alone, wouldn't cause me to stay away from the 2013 version.
I also find that the 2009 version also has an ever-so-slight edge in sharpness. In that first screen shot comparison (Liam Neeson's character Daniel with his stepson Sam, played by Thomas Sangster), look carefully at the white thread stitching near the neck on Sam's green shirt. The 2009 version is slightly sharper. You can also see the extra bit of sharpness in the white line on the pillow in the foreground.
It's my opinion that a bit more edge enhancement has been applied to the 2013 version, resulting in an increase in unnatural looking noise. What looks like film grain in the 2009 version, looks just a slight bit more like artificial manipulation in the 2013 version. The grain/noise seems more coarse in the 2013 version. One good place to see this is in screen shot #5. Look at the person's jacket standing near the window in the background. There's a diagonal line down the back (drab green on the left, dark green on the right). As you move the mouse back and forth over the image, notice how that line (and surrounding area) becomes more diffuse and appears to have larger grain in the 2013 version screen shot.
Obviously, in-motion, these differences would be far less noticeable (if noticeable at all). If I didn't own either one, I wouldn't be worried about buying the 10th Anniversary edition because, in my opinion, it certainly doesn't suck. But, based on my little comparison of screenshots, I prefer the look of the 2009 version. I'll take the very slight edge in sharpness, better contrast, and more film-like grain structure.
Since I already own the 2009 version, it seems silly to buy the 2013 version simply for a couple of song differences. Particularly since I've never seen the US cut. My first exposure to this film is the 2009 UK cut on Blu-ray. I'll stick with that.
Going off that screen comparison, the highlights look slightly more natural in the 2009 version. Though the differences are vanishingly small. I think people with the older disc will pick up the newer disc if they want a digital copy and the American cut.
Those screenshots are bunk. It's the same transfer. The only difference between the two discs is that two songs on the soundtrack have been replaced. The video is the same and has not been remastered.
Yep, Josh is correct!!
I purchased the 10th Anniversary Edition at Target today (got my movie cash for 'About Time'). I ripped it and the 2009 Blu-ray version to my hard drive and went ahead and grabbed a few frames from each so I could compare apples to apples (both discs ripped on the same computer, the same software and computer used for creating the screen grabs). I was really curious to do this because comparing the screen grabs from the two different Blu-ray.com reviews showed that UK cut (2009 Blu-ray) had a very very slight edge in sharpness and contrast. But those two sets of screen grabs weren't done on the same equipment, nor done at the same time.
After comparing four different scenes throughout the movie, I'm hear to tell you...
The transfers are IDENTICAL!
There is NO DIFFERENCE in sharpness, NO DIFFERENCE in contrast and NO DIFFERENCE in color. Period!
The picture area of the US cut (2013 10th Anniversary Edition) is ever so slightly taller by 1 pixel (maybe 2). When I A/B the matched screen grabs I can see the black line at the top move up for the US cut and down for the UK cut. But it's barely perceptible and it doesn't impact the movie in any way. You would never be able to tell the difference in image height if not for an instant A/B comparison. And even then it's easy to miss.
The statement on the box that the 10th Anniversary Edition is a "Digital Restoration" is a load of hogwash. There simply isn't one iota of difference in image quality vs. the 2009 release.
If you prefer the musical number differences for the U.S. cut, by all means get the 2013 10th Anniversary Edition. If you want the digital copy or the DVD, by all means get the 2013 Blu-ray. But if you're happy with the music for the U.K. cut and all you care about is the Blu-ray disc itself, then by all means stick with your 2009 version.
FWIW, the 2009 version is currently priced at $7.65 on Amazon.