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A lament for physical media and/or video stores

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A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Old 01-12-22, 06:22 PM
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A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Well, it finally happened. Went to the one DVD/Bluray shop left in town and they are going out of business. Much of my bluray collection came from this place run by this amazing guy and his family. He knew his stuff, knew his mainstays by name and always worked on getting you what you were looking for. Streaming and the pandemic, he said today, just did him in. Sad to see all the shelves empty (he even was still renting movies out).

I know streaming is here to stay but, and now I'm feeling old, but I just like holding a product, opening it, popping a disc into a player. Seriously, in Disney would release shows like WandaVision and the Madalorian on bluray I'd buy them but I guess I'm a minority in that department.

So, here's a thread to lament the probably slow passing of physical media.

To those who visit:

Why do you still purchase instead of sticking to streaming?
Got any video store stories to share?
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Old 01-12-22, 06:58 PM
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re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Boutique labels is all I really buy these days. Some odd sets and random movies if I feel like it.

It’s been passing slow since 2008 for the most part.
Old 01-12-22, 07:04 PM
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re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

I've stuck by physical media for the quality and selection. Streaming still can't quite compete with the quality of presentation. Plus, you must rely on your internet connection. And I was reminded of how great an asset my collection can be during this last horror challenge. A friend who lives out of town kept wanting to watch many of the same movies that I was. Many weren't streaming at all or were only at places where he didn't have a membership or had commercial interruptions. I didn't have to worry about any of that. Streaming is a great tool, but it's not the definitive one for me.
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Old 01-12-22, 07:17 PM
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re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by clckworang View Post
I've stuck by physical media for the quality and selection. Streaming still can't quite compete with the quality of presentation. Plus, you must rely on your internet connection. And I was reminded of how great an asset my collection can be during this last horror challenge. A friend who lives out of town kept wanting to watch many of the same movies that I was. Many weren't streaming at all or were only at places where he didn't have a membership or had commercial interruptions. I didn't have to worry about any of that. Streaming is a great tool, but it's not the definitive one for me.
Indeedy, the movie I bought today from the going out of biz place was Halloween Kills which I first watched on Peacock. Streaming, it looked horrible. Looks amazing on bluray.
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Old 01-12-22, 09:19 PM
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re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

To echo what clckworang mentioned, I enjoy watching films from the comfort of my living room and physical media still offers the best presentation I can get there.

Another reason why I appreciate physical media is because I teach a High School Film Studies course. During the initial wave COVID-19 (and the following year) my Film Studies course was regulated to being taught online. It was frustrating to have to deal with renting or purchasing Digital Copies on Amazon (protected by DRM) or streaming via Netflix, which also caused issues when teaching classes over Zoom.

When our classes returned in-person, I continued to be reminded that the timed-window to watch rented films on Amazon or the possibility of films being removed via Netflix caused unnecessary frustration within my curriculum. Also having the size & variety of my collection, compared to a streaming service like Netflix, allowed me to create a fluid curriculum for my students.

At least with physical media, when I have my in-person classes, I am able to easily bring a copy of a film I want to screen in my course and not be held hostage by time. This increases the overall enjoyment of the course from both sides.

Off the top of my head, one of my favorite video store memories was living within a 10-minute drive from a store that had all their rentals at 99 cents. New releases could be kept for a day (before late fees) and older releases could be kept for up to 3-days. When I was kid, I remember my dad taking me to this store on Friday nights, where I would leave with a stack of Horror, Action & Sci-Fi films, which would keep my occupied throughout the weekend.
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Old 01-12-22, 10:51 PM
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re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

I understand the appeal of streaming however still love and prefer physical media for much the same reasons as others here.

I do miss the video stores. With Blockbuster and Hollywood Video, along with renting, also would peruse the previously viewed movies put out for sale. Probably bought many VHSs and definitely a ton of DVDs, lol. Back in the day, probably mid-late 80s, there was an independent video rental store where they had themed sections, so the part for westerns had a wood porch and facade of a saloon. Don't remember the others but that one was where I loved to play on.
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Old 01-13-22, 12:18 PM
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re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by ViewAskewbian View Post
Indeedy, the movie I bought today from the going out of biz place was Halloween Kills which I first watched on Peacock. Streaming, it looked horrible. Looks amazing on bluray.
I watched that using a borrowed subscription and the quality was adequate, but they RUINED the ending by having a countdown appear right after the final shot before the credits, it appeared even before the first credit came onscreen, saying it was going to play the Prom Night remake next unless I fumbled with the remote and found the "cancel" button. I had been forewarned about this so I was able to cancel it in time and let it keep playing, but god DAMN did it still piss me off. It's like someone grabbing the remote and changing the channel right at the climax- credits are a time to absorb the ending especially when it's intense, not shuffle off immediately to another movie. Shit like that has been my main complaint about streaming and it's sad that most people give it a pass; I've found ways around it on most services (Airplay has been a godsend but you need an iphone or ipad to use that, Chromecast has worked in other instances) but Peacock doesn't support any of those (it works with Chromecast but only passes 2-channel audio there) so I was forced to use their shitty app. I'll never watch anything else on there even for free. If I were the director I would have been furious at having my brand-new movie treated like that.

And yes, the world is a much sadder place with no media stores. Closest we have left here is Half Price Books which only sells used stuff, so you can't go there on new release day for anything. It's still fun to look around there but it just isn't the same. I was thinking how much I miss Fry's, they had an incredible selection. Renting VHS back in the day was fun too, but for various reasons I bought far more than rented by the time DVD came along.
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Old 01-13-22, 05:28 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

the way of the dodo.

love the convenience of carrying around 2000 owned vudu movies and shows and countless thousands of others available on various other platforms on my phone, that I can sling to my TV, a projector, whatever.

Old 01-13-22, 05:44 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

What are the odds that the movie you want to stream is available on one of your pay streaming services or available on the free (w/ads) streaming services?

I am guessing with me its about 80 percent not available.
Old 01-13-22, 05:51 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by dvd-4-life View Post
What are the odds that the movie you want to stream is available on one of your pay streaming services or available on the free (w/ads) streaming services?

I am guessing with me its about 80 percent not available.
But what are the chances it's available on Vudu/itunes/etc to buy? Probably pretty decent.
Old 01-13-22, 05:55 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

You can still be a heavy physical media consumer if you are into a couple very specific genres - anime and horror. Both genres are heavily reliant on physical media as a revenue source. I do miss visiting media stores and browsing shelves. Actually handling a DVD set before purchase was often critical in my purchasing decision. I would love to just walk into a fully stocked rental store today but the only one I know of remaining in my area only services adult fare.

Streaming has its place but there are immense trade-offs that normal people have seemingly accepted without much resistance. I understand most people simply want to watch a movie or show, and the mechanics of streaming are fine for that lone desire.
Old 01-13-22, 06:06 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

It's weird how anime streaming is almost on the forefront (with stuff coming on streaming far far in advance of physical, if it makes it to physical at all) while anime digital purchases are like the ugly stepbrother nobody cares about. They still separate out sub and dub digital titles, and the few physical media that do come with a digital copy have hoops to jump through (like do you really want a digital copy tied to the Funimation website?)
Old 01-13-22, 06:19 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by fujishig View Post
It's weird how anime streaming is almost on the forefront (with stuff coming on streaming far far in advance of physical, if it makes it to physical at all) while anime digital purchases are like the ugly stepbrother nobody cares about. They still separate out sub and dub digital titles, and the few physical media that do come with a digital copy have hoops to jump through (like do you really want a digital copy tied to the Funimation website?)
Anime fans have subconsciously picked up the preference for media from Japan, probably the last country clinging to physical media. I imagine though younger anime fans won't quite embrace physical media like older fans. Anime streaming still has some hang-ups which separate it from other genres - censorship, bad sub translations, and missing video bonuses which aren't common for non-anime content.
Old 01-13-22, 06:23 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by TheMovieman View Post
Back in the day, probably mid-late 80s, there was an independent video rental store where they had themed sections, so the part for westerns had a wood porch and facade of a saloon. Don't remember the others but that one was where I loved to play on.
There was one of these in Las Vegas in the mid 90's. The horror section was in a haunted house, the sci fi section was a rocket ship, etc. Fun times.

I do miss browsing video stores. For some reason, there was something much more intriguing about box art than a little thumbnail on your TV screen. Loading up on Friday night with a weekend's worth of movies can't be replicated on streaming.
Old 01-13-22, 06:28 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

There were still video rental stores where I lived until fall 2019. Both stores closed around the same time before the Pandemic started. I loved walking around and looking at movies and talking to the employees and other customers about movies. I would spend thirty minutes to an hour just walking around looking through the 2 for $1 rentals at Family Video for movies that I haven't seen before. I always rented lots of $1 or 50 cent rentals with my allowance growing up. I was able to watch Rocky 1-5 for $5 back in the day. There are some movies that I loved watching growing up like The Power Within that I wouldn't have known about without video rental stores.

I really like the convenience of having a whole digital movie collection that I can take anywhere, but there are plenty of movies like Better Off Dead, Last American Virgin, and The Power Within that you can't find digitally.
Old 01-13-22, 07:06 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by PhantomStranger View Post
You can still be a heavy physical media consumer if you are into a couple very specific genres - anime and horror.
I'm not sure I agree with that, and that's in a couple different directions.

For one, new horror is underserved on Blu-ray; a lot of these movies (especially smaller/independent titles) are either digital-only when it comes to home video or DVD/VOD; no Blu-ray to speak of.

But on the other, I feel like basically no matter what someone's into, there's a steady supply of it on Blu-ray, to the point where it's a mighty struggle to keep up with it all. Other labels have really picked up the slack, especially KL Studio Classics. A fair number of what they put out never even found its way onto DVD, and a good bit isn't available via VUDU, Amazon Video, or the like either. Of the reviews I wrote in 2021 (encompassing Scream Factory, Arrow, Severin, Criterion, KL Studio Classics, Blue Underground, and a couple others), around 39% weren't available to buy/rent digitally on Amazon.
Old 01-13-22, 07:33 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

I recently came across one of my DVD sets for Season 2 of a relatively obscure cartoon from the mid-00s.
Being reminded of this, I tried to search out the rest of the show (both through legal and not-so-legal means) and it's non-existent. There is exactly one full episode online, and it's the same one that's on the show's old webpage. Everything else is random clips only.
Hell, even the 13 episodes I have on DVD don't appear to be on any video-based service at all. Am I the only one still clutching onto this thing?

This is all kind of related to the OP, in that I do kind of miss how popular physical media as a whole was, since that allowed stuff like this to get released at all, even if it never sold enough to make other sets. It's kind of like the Criterion effect... for every Wes Anderson film that sells a million copies, there's half a dozen other titles that never would have seen the light of day.
Old 01-14-22, 08:11 AM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by fujishig View Post
But what are the chances it's available on Vudu/itunes/etc to buy? Probably pretty decent.
There's no point in these streaming services(Netflix,etc) that don't carry the movies that I want too watch.

Plus the stream's(Spectrum internet) aren't that great during certain time periods and the best time to stream would be the middle of the night.

Physical media has none of these problems.
Old 01-14-22, 08:28 AM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

This video store in my home town, with the unimaginative name Video Video, used to have this gumball machine at the front. Most places would have a gumball inside with a star that got you a free movie or something. This one had this whole color coded system:

Blue=old release
Red=new release
Yellow=a can of soda
Green=a video game

My brother and I used to pool our allowances and pump quarters into this thing and leave with like 5 movies, 3 games and a six pack of Coke ever two weeks. Not to mention a shitload of gum

The guy behind the counter also didn't seem to care about ratings and kids so we always snagged some choice horror flicks and, every once in awhile, a horrible film but lots of nudity.

* * *

Another issue I have with streaming is the network has more control over a version of a film they release. Case in point, Adventures in Babysitting on Disney+ is the TV safe version without the F bomb. A friend of mine was talking to me about watching it and, when I quoted the line "Don't fuck with the babysitter", she had no clue what I was talking about. I busted out the DVD and showed her the original scene. Psychical media = because movies need more fucks
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Old 01-14-22, 08:58 AM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by dvd-4-life View Post
There's no point in these streaming services(Netflix,etc) that don't carry the movies that I want too watch.

Plus the stream's(Spectrum internet) aren't that great during certain time periods and the best time to stream would be the middle of the night.

Physical media has none of these problems.
I realize you probably mean there's no point to you, but people subscribe to these services because there's some content they want to watch, just now it's more original content than movies.

I agree that physical media is more reliable, I'm just saying as far as availability goes on the fly if there's physical media readily available for something it's probably available digitally somewhere as well.

That cartoon example above (what was the show by the way) is cool but unusual to me because kids cartoons/tv shows are the one area where we didn't really get everything released (or at the very least they never bothered to release a ton of stuff on Blu-ray). For instance, something like Spongebob is probably easier to find digitally than actual physical sets.
Old 01-14-22, 01:23 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by dvd-4-life View Post
What are the odds that the movie you want to stream is available on one of your pay streaming services or available on the free (w/ads) streaming services?

I am guessing with me its about 80 percent not available.
And what's the chance an average consumer is going to go out and buy the movie on Blu-ray if they want to see it? Pretty damn slim unless its a new release or super evergreen title like Jurassic Park. Target and Best Buy have little in terms on movies on disc. Streaming? Yeah, it might not be on Netflix or Hulu, but you can probably rent it for $3.99 and it'll have no commercials, no loading screens, no 5 minute intro waiting for the movie to play etc. You just press rent, and it'll start in seconds. Sure, some people have shit internet, but for most, it'll be just fine.

You and I are not normal. Normal people do not have 1000+ movies on disc. They might have a small modest collection, but if they want to watch High Fidelity on a whim, they are not going to just walk into Best Buy and buy it because it won't be available. Amazon? OK, but who wants to wait 2 days?


Old 01-14-22, 01:53 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by dvd-4-life View Post
There's no point in these streaming services(Netflix,etc) that don't carry the movies that I want too watch.

Plus the stream's(Spectrum internet) aren't that great during certain time periods and the best time to stream would be the middle of the night.

Physical media has none of these problems.
It all depends on the movies you want to watch. If you didn't have such a big collection of films on physical media, you would have the same problem as streaming. You would have to track down a copy of the film, hope its not out of print, maybe DVD only etc.

I've yet to have any issues streaming a movie besides a small hiccup here and there. You either live in a small town or have terrible internet.
Old 01-14-22, 01:57 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by fujishig View Post
I realize you probably mean there's no point to you, but people subscribe to these services because there's some content they want to watch, just now it's more original content than movies.

I agree that physical media is more reliable, I'm just saying as far as availability goes on the fly if there's physical media readily available for something it's probably available digitally somewhere as well.

That cartoon example above (what was the show by the way) is cool but unusual to me because kids cartoons/tv shows are the one area where we didn't really get everything released (or at the very least they never bothered to release a ton of stuff on Blu-ray). For instance, something like Spongebob is probably easier to find digitally than actual physical sets.
I fee like little TV gets released on DVD/BD now unless its very popular or those MOD releases, all while they are usually available to purchase digitally in 1080p, vs 480p on DVD like many TV on Disc went back to because of poor sales. I loved TV on BD, but was pissed when so many shows just dropped the BD altogether leaving me with an incomplete show. I know I am not alone in that. That really killed my interest in physical media.

I'm at 1 BD release purchase for the year - Harold and Maude. I'll be shocked if I buy 4 more titles this year unless Criterion released some of the Wes Anderson films on 4k or something really unique comes out. I can get a "good enough" 4k stream or just buy it digitally when it hits $5 and watch it literally anywhere.
Old 01-14-22, 02:12 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

Originally Posted by Gizmo View Post
I fee like little TV gets released on DVD/BD now unless its very popular
...and even still not in many cases. I'd certainly purchase blurays of Cobra Kai, the Marvel and Star Wars shows but they are stuck streaming. The completionist in me squirms when I, say, look at my Clone Wars blus missing the final season
Old 01-14-22, 02:23 PM
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Re: A lament for physical media and/or video stores

At least with Cobra Kai, you can put it digitally in 1080p. The Disney stuff...yeah...never.

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