Barnes & Noble Semi-Annual 50% off Criterion Sale

Jake Lipson

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If you order titles one at a time, you don't take the hit on shipping that you do without a membership.
Yeah, I wish I had one for that reason. If that were the case, I wouldn't have to wait for one thing I kind of want to come back in stock before I order the other one that I want that is in stock now.

However, this is the first time I've shopped at the website in years. When I logged in, I discovered they still had my home address from six years and two houses ago set as my default address. That was worth a good laugh while I was deleting it. So the membership wouldn't make any sense for me at this time.

Our local store is in the same mall as the AMC movie theater which I used to go to before they remodeled it to segregate the wheelchair seats exclusively to the back row. Back when I used to go to that theater, I would stop into B&N periodically, but even then I would find retail prices or nominal most things. One time, I did an impulse buy of a book that looked interesting while I was at the theater for Baby Driver, and then came back to Amazon and found I'd overpaid by $15 at B&N. I like that physical bookstores exist, but it doesn't make sense to me to pay more just to get something there.

Because I never actually go to that movie theater anymore, my shopping at that mall has also decreased. Typically, I go in there during the Criterion sale and that's it. I would probably have gone in there today if not for the virus, but we are getting absolutely hammered here, so I'm just doing online shopping this time. I usually enjoy being able to go in and get it right there. Hopefully by the summer sale comes around again next July, there will be a vaccine and I can just go in and get stuff without having to worry about a free shipping minimum.

On another note, does anyone remember when during the month Criterion usually announces new releases? I know they are announced through their September slate, but have never paid any particular attention to when they make those announcements. I was wondering if, perhaps, an announcement for the October titles could be forthcoming before the end of the sale. If so, would those go up for pre-order and qualify at the reduced pricing temporarily?
 
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Jake Lipson

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We know that they will be releasing Original Cast Album Company at some point, and it is already on the Criterion Channel. That is a holy grail title for me one of the few titles I care enough about to actually pay $27.99+tax from Amazon for regardless of a deeper sale. So it would certainly be nice If that were to be announced and listed during a sale period. But if not, I'll pay more for it.
 

Hollywoodaholic

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David Norman

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Is that normal for pre-orders with B&N? My order includes Marriage Story, which is being released on July 21, and it currently says they will ship it on that date. It would be nice if it went out a little earlier, although if I wait a few days after the release, that won't be a huge problem. I am pleased that they are shipping it for free because the whole order was over $35, even though it was the only pre-order I included and therefore the other two in-stock ones shipped separately.
I don't preorder a lot of items at B&N, but normally I get them pretty close to release date. Occasionally Saturday, but it's rare that I remember many later than Wednesday unless it's one of those that every retailer has issues with. The MOD titles (Warner, Universal, Sony) are always more unpredictable, but the Criterions I've preordered usually ship a few days pre-release

Or are you talking B&N shelving/unboxing new releases prior to release day - that is unusual, but may be partially due to lower staff. The Mall Anchor store has been really bad about not even unboxing their new releases for days after release since they eliminated the Dedicated Movie Clerk/Manager. Anytime I'm having trouble at that store I try to sneak behind the counter or on their Cart and look at the open boxes to see what;s not been put on display yet and it's amazing how often I'd find 1-2 week old titles still in their shipping box.
 
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Jake Lipson

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Or are you talking B&N shelving/unboxing new releases prior to release day
No, I was just wondering when to expect my Marriage Story pre-order, so your first paragraph answered that. Thanks. I normally do my disc pre-orders with Amazon, where I get free shipping via Prime. I went with B&N on this one because I was already ordering two other in-stock Criterions, so it didn't cost me any shipping to throw it in.
 

Hollywoodaholic

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Huh. Of the three titles I ordered...only Destry Rides Again and The Story of Temple Drake have shipped. NOT The Lady Eve.
Got The Lady Eve today. War of the Worlds on track for tomorrow. I just remember ordering from BN around 10:30 am on the 10th. Originated in Kentucky to Central Florida if that makes a difference.
 

Dave Jessup

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Temple Drake was my in-store purchase near the beginning of the sale. I'd hoped for War of the Worlds but the last copy was on hold for a customer who ultimately got it; since then all locations within 100 miles have been out of stock. Ended up ordering in-store / ship to home today - plenty of other goodies to watch here, but not unlimited $$. I'm perfectly OK with "three to eight business days."
 

David Norman

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Figured it was close enough to at least post a Heads Up.

3-4+ people have been given a start date of Nov 6 already, I just got off the Phone with one of my good Stores adn the clerk
read off her computer screen -- Criterion 50% Sale Starting Friday November 6 and runs through Nov 30.
1 person can be told erroneous information, but unless multiple B&N are all in on a massive practical Joke I'm going to believe these
are pretty firm date.

She didn't have any other information on the sale if terms have changed -- specifically Member Discounts which has been a worry for several years and yet to be implemented). There was no information on concurrent sales like ArrowFilms and Cohen Films like last year, but those were 95% online sales so the stores often don't get Corporate Emails on those.

Obviously -- store openings and in-store customer traffic is YMMV and will vary depending on your region. Store stocks are still reported as variable with some stores with fairly normal Criterion supplies and others pretty hit or miss (even in the stores that normally carry media).

I'd suggest if you are an in-person only buyer and think your store may be on the light side it wouldn't be the worst idea to call your store and see if they will order copies of specific titles to your store to be ready for you. Reserving an item over the phone is a different process than doing an ISPU order online esp if you are a member. ISPU usually don't get the member discount since they are considered Web Purchases and not In-store purchase.

MSRP listed -- assume $40 unless marked otherwise

CRITERION RELEASED SINCE LAST B&N SALE ENDEDMSRP
The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum Blu-ray7155152498124-Aug-2020
The Complete Films of Agnès Varda Blu-ray71551524791711-Aug-2020$250
Town Bloody Hall Blu-ray71551524991118-Aug-2020
The Comfort of Strangers Blu-ray71551525031318-Aug-2020
Toni Blu-ray71551525011525-Aug-2020
Brute Force Blu-ray7155152508188-Sep-2020
The Naked City Blu-ray7155152509178-Sep-2020
Beau Travail Blu-ray71551525101315-Sep-2020
Christ Stopped at Eboli Blu-ray71551525121122-Sep-2020
The Elephant Man Blu-ray71551525151829-Sep-2020
Martin Scorsese's World Cinema Project, No. 3 Blu-ray71551525141929-Sep-2020$125
Pierrot le fou Blu-ray7155152411136-Oct-2020
Claudine Blu-ray71551525181513-Oct-2020
The Hit Blu-ray71551525241620-Oct-2020
The Gunfighter Blu-ray71551525221820-Oct-2020
Parasite Blu-ray71551525261427-Oct-2020


Usually the New Releases will be 50% off online and for In-store generated Ship to Home orders at the beginning of the sale

CRITERION RELEASING DURING NOV 2020 B&N SALE
Girlfriends Blu-ray71551524921810-Nov-2020
Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai Blu-ray71551525281217-Nov-2020
Moonstruck Blu-ray71551525301717-Nov-2020
The Irishman Blu-ray71551525321524-Nov-2020
Essential Fellini Blu-ray71551525251524-Nov-2020$250


Items released after the listed end of the sale usually will not be 50% online or shiptohome though there have been sales in the past that this wasn't 100% followed so just to be complete

CRITERION RELEASING AFTER NOV 2020 B&N SALE presumed END DATE
Crash Blu-ray7155152536111-Dec-2020
Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Two Takes by William Greaves Blu-ray7155152520108-Dec-2020
Mouchette Blu-ray7155152538198-Dec-2020
Amores Perros Blu-ray71551525341315-Dec-2020
Three Films by Luis Buñuel Blu-ray7155152548165-Jan-2020$100
Minding the Gap Blu-ray71551525421212-Jan-2020
Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese Blu-ray71551525441019-Jan-2020
The Ascent Blu-ray71551525461826-Jan-2020
 
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David Norman

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BARNES & NOBLE Criterion 50% OFF MSRP FALL 2020 Sale -- NOV 6 through NOV 30

Start Date appears confirmed by multiple people so FWIW......

Since this thread is a few years old and things are a little different now. The General Rules are based on past sales, buy there are at least a couple question marks -- new owners, new sale, COVID interactions. Everything is still a bit of a work in progress and regional/individual stores will likely function a bit differently depending on your local situation.

1) 50% OFF MSRP Assuming this will include online and in-store Criterions as always

2) Online and In-store Sale for items released prior to the official end of the sale should be 50% OFF from the beginning of the sale. Preorders of items released after the end date have not been allowed for preorder online nor as ShiptoHome items in the last several sales

3) FREE SHIPPING $35 or with membership, There are a couple large boxsets like Bergman that usually get designation for Heavy Shipping charge so no FS regardless

4)**** The Major Question Mark centers on the fate of the 10% In-Store Only Member discount This applied in the summer despite rumors it was going to be blocked. For now I'm presuming this will continue to work, but everything is subject to revision until the sale starts and people have a chance to buy discs. There is one picture on reddit that again makes it a possibility that this extra discount will be discontinued. Last summer, this discount did apply to not only items you were buying on the spot, but to most store generated ShiptoHome ordered items that qualified for the sale AND several stores were even allowing it on items shipped from a distant store directly to your house on items that were in store stock, but OOS online. The latter has never been a common practice, but with COVID I think some stores were allowing it more commonly (still YMMV)

5) Criterion DVDs and Blurays included. Eclipse and Essentials branded sets also included

6) International Shipping
has been spotty at best for a few years. Some sales it seems to be allowed, others not, and still others one person can get it to work and another in the same country can't.

7) Backordered or OOS items generally can't be ordered online or ShiptoHome. ShiptoHome inventory or asking your store to have an item brought into your store for you to pickup from the Warehouse isn't always exactly the same as Online/Web Inventory. Items historically have gone in and out of stock multiple times online and stores inventories can vary wildly from region to region even with stores that still carry Discs. In July, restocking both online and in-store was extremely limited due to all supply chains from the Replication factory in Mexico to Wholesaler in Kentucky to Local stores being disrupted and warehoused inventories had been depleted even before the sale. At least some of this should be better now, but no way to know until we're in the middle of it.

8) BN has usually operated on ET so prices can start changing online sometime after Midnight ET, but it rarely is immediate and often it can take a few hours or even overnight for all the items to be marked down. Usually I expect most (not all) items to be marked down by 2am ET. At the end of the sale, the prices can last a bit later than Midnight ET, but often the prices change back well before 3am ET.
DO NOT PANIC if the sale gets off to a slow start online.

9) Coupons probably won't work even if you can find one -- at least not without a manual override so Massive YMMV.

10) There are other opportunities for savings. BN for years have had Gift Card deals online and in-store during the month and esp Black Friday weekend. These could net you 10-20% added savings though often came with Delayed Coupons or Promo Gift Cards. Each year the exact deals vary. Also some grocery stores run special deals on a PrePaid brand HappyCards (HappyTeen includes B&N)- around 10%. OfficeMax/Depot had a spectacular deal around Black Friday around 20% off and some AMEX cards have discount offers on this brand of PrePaid of around 15%. These cards work just like a Credit Card in store, but aren't always accepted online
 

David Norman

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I was thinking the same thing. However, the sale has occasionally been extended for a week.
More in the Summer, but it has happened under odd circumstances in the Fall like Hurricane Sandy (1st year the sale extended to/past BF) which botched the first 7-10days of the sale for a lot of people. 2012-2016 it ended on Cybermonday.

Since then it's been a lot more unpredictable -- 2017 they started Wed Nov 1 stopped Thurs Nov 30, 2018 - Fri 11/2 through Mon 12/3 (a full week beyond Cybermonday), last year Fri 11/1 and ended Sund 12/1 (the day before CM)

B&N had also run a different shorter 50% sale in December. 2013 there was a B1G1F sale in mid Dec and in 2018 there was an online Criterion 50% off sale in mid Dec

In previous years there has ALWAYS been a 40% off all BD sale the week before Christmas -- not quite as good, but some years coupons were allowed on the 40%, but not 50% sales. B&N skipped the 40% sale this Fathers Day week presumably b/c more than half the stores were still under or just coming off of severe COVID lockdowns. With this December completely up in the air there's just no way to predict what;s going to happen
 
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ManW_TheUncool

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Maybe they'll extend it since it's usually at least 4 weeks long, but less this time. Plus they could probably use the extra sales (and foot traffic)...

_Man_
 

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