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Does the average DVD buyer care about commentaries?

Does the average DVD buyer care about commentaries?

Old 12-24-03, 12:42 AM
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Does the average DVD buyer care about commentaries?

It seems like commentaries are never really pushed as a "special feature" when DVDs are advertised on TV and such. Does the average consumer not care about this feature? For me, it almost makes or breaks a DVD buy for me.

Seems like a lot of my friends (normal DVD buyers) don't care for it too much.
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Old 12-24-03, 12:58 AM
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I'd assume so. It's one of those holdovers from the LaserDisc days that doesn't bother me. I like learning from the commentaries as much as I can about how the filmmaker approached the material (if possible).

I think I've watched nearly every commentary that I have, and I find them fantastic. Even the crappy ones have something that I've learned.
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Old 12-24-03, 02:09 AM
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I doubt it
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Old 12-24-03, 02:10 AM
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I think the average buyer cares far more about the movie rather than whatever special features may be including on the disk.
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Old 12-24-03, 02:16 AM
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I don't think the vast majority of consumers care about commentaries. I really don't care about them. I enjoy some commentaries, but I don't listen to all of them. I like the feature, but can live without it.
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Old 12-24-03, 02:27 AM
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I have just bought a DVD player for my girlfriend, and someone has bought her father a DVD player as well.

They are the sort of people who used to buy videos and watch movies, but I am not sure how they will take to DVD. They may just watch the movies, and not have the patience to learn how to work the menus to get into the commentaries and other special features.

Though it would be nice if they worked it out and saw the benefits of the added bonuses DVD has to offer.

But it could be like when videos first came out, and there were people who never did work out how to use the timer function. They were just about able to record a program if they were actually in the same room, but that's it.

I remember once demoing my DVD player to a friends father. I showed him, among other things, the commentary option. He seemed fairly nonchalant about the whole thing, to be honest. I used to say he was welcome to come round and watch a movie when he wanted, but as much as he liked movies, he always refused.

It wasn't till about a year later when I was talking to him about a film I had that he wanted to see, and he said

"I really want to see it, but it's a shame you have one of those DVD player things that has all that talking over the film"

He did not realise it was an option. He assumed ALL dvd's had a permenant commentary. So he had dismissed them as something he was not interested in.

I often wonder how many people out there have odd perceptions about DVD's...
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Old 12-24-03, 02:29 AM
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I guess they thought DVD stood for Digital Versatile Dialog.
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Old 12-24-03, 02:54 AM
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In terms of importance, I'd say commentaries rank very low on the scale of special features to the general public. Deleted scenes are far and away the most important to them.

Of course as said above, most people don't really care about any of the special features, but those that do would take missing footage long before commentaries.
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Old 12-24-03, 02:56 AM
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persoanlly i dont really care about the commentaries, all i care about is the movie
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Old 12-24-03, 03:05 AM
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Originally posted by Copenhagen
I think the average buyer cares far more about the movie rather than whatever special features may be including on the disk.
Got to agree with this.
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Old 12-24-03, 05:06 AM
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If a DVD has a commentary track or tracks I will generally (75% of the time) listen to at least one of them. I like to learn about how a film was shot, shooting locations, difficulties, if a praticular scene was difficult or just average, and so on. When a DVD has 4 commentary tracks --- well --- maybe after I am retired!
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Old 12-24-03, 06:02 AM
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Yeah I seriously doubt that Joe DVD Buyer really cares about commentaries or even knows what they are. I just hope that the studios don't realize this and quit doing them, because I love them. I too have probably listened to every one that I own. Many more than once.
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Old 12-24-03, 10:25 AM
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I own over 400 DVDs and really don't care about them. I've only listened to a few and certainly not for the whole movie.
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Old 12-24-03, 10:37 AM
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Only if their done by Carrot Top
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Old 12-24-03, 10:49 AM
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I've sampled only a handful of commentaries out of my collection. Of those, I have never listened to any of them from start to finish. For one, I can barely squeeze in enough time to watch the movie itself.
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Old 12-24-03, 10:55 AM
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I think people are getting more educated as to what advantages DVD has over VHS in addtion to the improved picture/sound.
There will always be some folks who want the DVDs just for the movie itself, but seeing as most new releases have some sort of bonus material added, I think they're more likely now to check out the commentaries than before. Especially if the commentary is done by someone's favorite actor/actress of theirs(Johnny Depp on POTC comes to mind).
I think the previous perception has been that if it's a director or non-actor giving the commentary, it would be too technical and a bore to listen to for the average movie-watcher. Plus the time factor involved in listening to the commentary for the entire film, may be a turn-off to some.
Overall, though, this is probably one feature of the DVD that may be getting more usage than in previous years. Hopefully, the studios will realize the need to offer commentaries for the casual fan and not just the hard-core film junkies.

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Old 12-24-03, 10:58 AM
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IMHO, most DVD buyers don't base their decision on the inclusion of a commentary track. While I sometimes enjoy them, I usually don't even notice if there's commentary track until I get home and start checking out the bonus materials. That doesn't answer the question directly, but who doesn't like getting as much bonus material as possible for their money?
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Old 12-24-03, 10:59 AM
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Originally posted by Copenhagen
I think the average buyer cares far more about the movie rather than whatever special features may be including on the disk.
I must be the average buyer then.
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Old 12-24-03, 11:08 AM
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I'm guessing only a small fraction of consumers actually listen to commentaries on their DVDs. A few people I've talked to said they find them too distracting, even annoying. I love 'em though. Keep 'em coming.
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Old 12-24-03, 11:35 AM
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I have only listened to about 15 of the commentaries from my collection (only the movies I really love). I think commentaries are a nice feature, but most average fans do not care about them. I personally like to have a commentary track, because I know it will freshen up the next viewing experience (even though that may be a long time from when I get the DVD).
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Old 12-24-03, 11:44 AM
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I'm far from being an 'average' DVD buyer, and I've found the allure of commentaries to have gone from high to low.

What used to be an exciting proposition (the chance to hear the directors/actors/writers speak about the experience!) has denegrated into commentaries that are either remarkably dull or ones that sound as if you could play them for ANY movie ("So and so was a real professional").

I do still come across some enjoyable gems, but it seems that most are just going through the motions.
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Old 12-24-03, 11:45 AM
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Most don't. I almost always do.
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Old 12-24-03, 11:45 AM
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I own over 1,000 dvds and never sat thru a whole commentary track. All I have ever watched is commentary on the deleted to scenes to see why they got cut.
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Old 12-24-03, 02:44 PM
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to answer the first question directly, no i don't think the average joe cares about it.

for me personally, if i really liked a movie, then i might listen to the commentary. the problem is that quite a few of the commentary tracks are dull, and don't really give much info.
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Old 12-24-03, 03:14 PM
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Personally, I never listen to the commentary. I just don't want to waste another 2 hours listening to what someone has to say about the movie.
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