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best site for international Twilight Time purchases?

Twilight Time

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#1 of 49 AnthonyClarke

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Posted February 11 2014 - 07:36 PM

Screen archives is said to be best for US purchases of Twilight Time titles.

But is there a better deal anywhere for international buyers? The $US 10 postage for mail to Australia is way above standard rates and I'm wondering if there are better deals anywhere (I'm looking to pick up 'Zulu').



#2 of 49 CobraVerde

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Posted February 11 2014 - 10:04 PM

No.  The only places that sell Twilight Time titles are Screen Archives and the TCM store.  Unless you find a 3rd party seller on Amazon, but the prices are usually marked up.



#3 of 49 Persianimmortal

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Posted February 11 2014 - 10:11 PM

I'm in the same boat Anthony, but as I'm sure you know, that $10.00 postage to Australia is only for a single BD. If you order two for example, the total shipping cost to Australia is $12.50; order three and the total shipping is $15.00, etc. I just wait and bundle my purchases to get a cheap overall shipping rate. There are some great titles from TT coming out this year, and Zulu is unlikely to sell out in the next few months, so wait until you have two or three that you want and then order. Not quite the answer you were looking for I'm sure, but I think it's our only option.



#4 of 49 OliverK

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Posted February 12 2014 - 12:38 AM

I would suggest to watch numbers closely, from what I gather TT titles now sell better than previously just by virtue of them being better known by now and also due to collectors who buy everythign from them.

Also if you are interested in Zulu I would also look into Khartoum as an addition to your order, it is about another colonial adventure but with a completely different ending. A very good core and visuals, too even though the movie may be a bit static at times.

#5 of 49 AnthonyClarke

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Posted February 12 2014 - 04:16 AM

I remember seeing Khartoum quite a few years ago and think I'd give it a miss this time around ... but thanks for the suggestion. I guess my near-neighbour Koroush Ghazi (only 350 miles or so up the road) has the best idea .. wait till I can get a mail discount for multiple purchases. I just hope I have better luck than when I tried the same deal with Barnes and Noble during their last Criterion sale .. one disc lost in the mail, the other, 'To Be or Not to Be', couldn't be ordered by B & N into stock.



#6 of 49 Douglas R

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Posted February 12 2014 - 04:50 AM

I'm in the same boat Anthony, but as I'm sure you know, that $10.00 postage to Australia is only for a single BD. If you order two for example, the total shipping cost to Australia is $12.50; order three and the total shipping is $15.00, etc. I just wait and bundle my purchases to get a cheap overall shipping rate.

 

Does Australia not have import taxes? The problem with bundling, say two discs, in Europe, is that Value Added Tax is payable for any item priced over about $24. In the UK that's 20% plus a Post Office fee of about $13 plus a credit charge foreign transaction charge which for two $29.95 TT discs comes to about $100. Eek!! No wonder I buy few TT or Criterion discs! In fact I suspect my copy of MAD WORLD is with Customs right now. Admittedly not every package gets examined by Customs - in fact it seems to happen more often with Amazon packages than others. When I was working, these sort of costs didn't matter quite so much but now I'm retired I think twice ...or thrice. And very few films are worth such costs for me to import from the US other than, for example, those big box sets of BEN-HUR and THE TEN COMMANDMENTS for example; neither of which were issued in that box format in the UK.  


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#7 of 49 Jari K

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Posted February 12 2014 - 05:54 AM

Folks in the U.S. seems to be a bit paranoid with the custom (etc) charges to Europe, Australia, etc. It shows in Ebay, where they want to charge an arm and leg for shipping and some even add these weird "import charges" on top of that.

I mean these custom charges are not the problem of the seller - they're always the problem of the buyer. And I'm sure most of you know how the customs works. They don't have time to check every package so many packages will pass very easily (even if the order is clearly over the custom limits).

But yes, ordering two TT Blu-ray discs from the U.S. to e.g. Europe or Australia could cost something like 80-90$ with shipping and possible custom charges. But hey, just like that guy from TT said: You just can't afford everything in life. So many of us just have to keep searching those bargain bins.

#8 of 49 Persianimmortal

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Posted February 12 2014 - 06:44 AM

I remember seeing Khartoum quite a few years ago and think I'd give it a miss this time around ... but thanks for the suggestion. I guess my near-neighbour Koroush Ghazi (only 350 miles or so up the road) has the best idea .. wait till I can get a mail discount for multiple purchases. I just hope I have better luck than when I tried the same deal with Barnes and Noble during their last Criterion sale .. one disc lost in the mail, the other, 'To Be or Not to Be', couldn't be ordered by B & N into stock.

 

For the record, I've never had a Twilight TIme order from Screen Archives get lost, damaged or delayed in the mail. They always arrive in less than two weeks, well packaged and undamaged. I finally went region free last week (bought a region free mod-chipped Panasonic BDT500), and so I'm now buying some Criterions, but I just buy those as part of my usual Amazon orders.

 

 

Does Australia not have import taxes?

 

Not as such, no. We have a tax-free threshold of $1,000 for imports. That means that as long as a single order/package doesn't exceed $1,000 in value, it's tax free and is usually not held up by customs. I import virtually all of my Blu-rays from overseas, primarily Amazon US or UK, and I've never been taxed or had a package held by customs. I did once find a customs inspection slip inside a box of books I ordered from the US, but that's it out numerous overseas orders over the past few years.

 

 

But yes, ordering two TT Blu-ray discs from the U.S. to e.g. Europe or Australia could cost something like 80-90$ with shipping and possible custom charges. But hey, just like that guy from TT said: You just can't afford everything in life. So many of us just have to keep searching those bargain bins.

 

So no, ordering two TT titles to Australia will not cost $80-90, more like $72.50. And if it's three titles, that's $105.00 for us here in Australia, compared to around $96.00 for those in the US. Hardly an outrageous difference. Having said that though, the Australian dollar has fallen sharply over the past few months, from being worth more than the US dollar, to now being worth 10% less, so that's also a factor for us to consider when ordering from the US.



#9 of 49 EddieLarkin

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Posted February 12 2014 - 08:16 AM

I believe I've clarified this before, but UK buyers at least will not receive any customs fees on an order from SAE that includes four items or less.



#10 of 49 Douglas R

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Posted February 12 2014 - 08:24 AM

I believe I've clarified this before, but UK buyers at least will not receive any customs fees on an order from SAE that includes four items or less.

 

Unless Customs decide to examine them to check whether the customs declaration is accurate ;)



#11 of 49 Keith Cobby

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Posted February 12 2014 - 08:28 AM

I didn't realise the customs free limit was 4 items or less as the most I have received in one package is 2 discs. There used to be a strictly enforced (low) limit which was always a hassle.



#12 of 49 EddieLarkin

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Posted February 12 2014 - 08:35 AM

Unless Customs decide to examine them to check whether the customs declaration is accurate ;)

 

I don't believe SAE include invoices in the package, so there would be little for them to go on.

 

I didn't realise the customs free limit was 4 items or less as the most I have received in one package is 2 discs. There used to be a strictly enforced (low) limit which was always a hassle.

 

It isn't. The customs fee limit is £15. Anything that is declared as over £15 (or $24) can get charged. Anything that is declared below that should sail through (or in my case, has done so every single time for hundreds of orders).



#13 of 49 schan1269

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Posted February 12 2014 - 09:18 AM

I've found US sellers listing things on Amazon.UK/De/Fr.

Then I'll look for it here.

Stupid thing is, it costs less to order over there...even if it is already here.

#14 of 49 Billy Batson

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Posted February 12 2014 - 09:21 AM

The cost of the American postage is a drag, but I've been buying soundtrack CD's from SAE for fifteen years (to England) & have never had any trouble or paid any custom charges.



#15 of 49 Ernest

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Posted February 12 2014 - 12:35 PM

When looking for any title in the International market on Blu-ray you should always do a search on Blu-ray review.  They have an excellent data base that will advise if the title is available from one of the Amazon International sites.  I have purchased many Blu-ray titles from Amazon.fr, Amazon.de. found the quality excellent and the prices much cheaper from buying from Australia.  I just purchased 13th Warrior and Four Feathers (Heath Ledger) for under $20.00 each from Amazon.de.  I forgot I also just purchased "Children of Dune" on Blu-ray for under $20.00 from Amazon.de.  Most of the Blu-rays are Region Locked "B" so it is best to have a Region-Free player.



#16 of 49 AnthonyClarke

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Posted February 13 2014 - 06:21 PM

Thanks for all the advice. 'Persian Immortal' is correct in that we don't have to pay duty on imports of Blu rays as long as they don't exceed $1000 in value (!) but shipments can occasionally be held up for Customs check.

Actually, my imports have been checked only once by Customs . some years ago, after a price-comparison of sites, I ordered from a site which I found  later was famous for its porno catalogue. So Customs had a reason for opening the parcel .. and inside were two Disney titles, 'Pollyanna' and 'The Parent Trap'!



#17 of 49 Doug Bull

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Posted February 13 2014 - 07:19 PM

I just ordered a blu-ray player from the USA and it will arrive here DUTY FREE  thankfully, because of the $1000 free ceiling on Imports.

 

Because of complaints from the retail sector, the new government here in Australia is threatening to lower the duty free limit to around $30.

If this happens it looks as if we will be forced to buy and import our discs just one at a time.

 

Not meaning to upset our friends in the UK, but we purchase discs from the UK  VAT free  and with no tax or duty to pay here in Australia all purchases become bargains. (postage and the money exchange rates are our only extra costs)

That's one reason I buy a lot of discs from the UK. 



#18 of 49 Persianimmortal

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Posted February 14 2014 - 04:41 AM

I wouldn't be overly worried about the talk of lowering the tax threshold Doug. It may be lowered but I doubt it will be to anywhere near $30. It's true that Governments of both persuasions here have been lobbied hard by the retailers, but the facts are that if it was lowered to the same level as the UK for example it would only raise around $600 million in extra tax revenue, at an enforcement cost of $2 billion! This is a nice summary of the facts.

I think we can continue to enjoy our imported blu-rays without much worry :)

#19 of 49 AnthonyClarke

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Posted February 14 2014 - 03:36 PM

Of course, if retailers here were allowed to stock the same catalogue of Blu ray titles at prices equivalent to the US or the UK, then there would be no need to import. The very few times I ever see a Criterion disc locally, it's invariably around the $50 mark!

And as for Blu ray players themselves ... under the so-called 'Free' Trade Agreement with the USA, Australian retailers aren't allowed to openly sell region-free machines which will play US Blu rays!



#20 of 49 Persianimmortal

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Posted February 14 2014 - 04:23 PM



Of course, if retailers here were allowed to stock the same catalogue of Blu ray titles at prices equivalent to the US or the UK, then there would be no need to import. The very few times I ever see a Criterion disc locally, it's invariably around the $50 mark!

 

Retailers can stock the same titles, we just have a serious problem in Australia with distributor monopolies and hence much higher prices. You may recall there was even a recent parliamentary inquiry that looked at why Apple and other companies charge more for the exact same software (via digital download, such as through iTunes) in Australia than they do in the US. The ultimate outcome of that was that there is no logical reason, but that the companies differentiate price for the Australian market because they believe we can pay a higher amount.

 

In other words, there's no real reason why some things can cost up two twice as much or more here, even if you factor in transport costs. This is what has triggered Aussies to turn to importing on a major scale now. I'm happy to keep importing as long as retailers here follow an uncompetitive model. And yes, I actually have a degree in economics, I've examined these arguments closely, I even used to give economic updates in person to Joe Hockey many years ago, before he became our esteemed treasurer :)

 

 


And as for Blu ray players themselves ... under the so-called 'Free' Trade Agreement with the USA, Australian retailers aren't allowed to openly sell region-free machines which will play US Blu rays!

 

This is actually not true Anthony. Region Free players are perfectly legal in Australia. As this article points out:

 

 

So are region-free players legal in Australia? Both the ACCC and ACMA told me they don’t regulate such things, but finally the Attorney-General’s department confirmed that region-free DVD and Blu-ray players are exempt from the Technological Protection Measures (TPMs) included in the US Free Trade Agreement.

 

I bought my region free player from a company in Melbourne that openly advertises region free players of all models on their website and on ebay for many years. They're just very expensive, but not illegal. I paid extra to buy it locally because I wanted local warranty support, and as it turns out this was a good idea, because the mod chip in my unit is now acting up and will need to be replaced. I can ship it back to Melbourne for $20, as opposed to shipping it back to the US for up to $100.







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