STOLEN/LOST DVDs!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Roderick Gauci, Apr 23, 2002.

  1. Roderick Gauci

    Roderick Gauci Stunt Coordinator

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    In March I placed an order with DeepDiscountDVD comprising 8 discs. As one of the items, Mario Bava’s BLACK SUNDAY (from Image Entertainment) was out-of-stock at the time and Wojchiech J. Has’ THE SARAGOSSA MANUSCRIPT (also from Image) was not yet released, only 6 items from my order were shipped immediately. These were: Benjamin Christensen’s HAXAN, Alfred Hitchcock’s THE 39 STEPS and NOTORIOUS, Preston Sturges’ THE LADY EVE and Laurence Olivier’s HENRY V (all from The Criterion Collection), and the Universal Classic Monsters Double-Feature DVD of WEREWOLF OF LONDON/SHE-WOLF OF LONDON.

    Last Thursday, I finally received my package but I was shocked to discover that it had been tampered with and that only the HENRY V disc was in fact inside the box!! I immediately checked with the local post office and then with their Head Office in order to verify the amount of discs that were found in the package, which are usually opened in the presence of a local censor. Considering the large sum of money involved ($165), I was expecting to be charged a sizeable amount in customs duty on the items acquired – as had always happened in the past – but I can only say that my surprise was to be of an altogether different nature!

    Incidentally, THE SARAGOSSA MANUSCRIPT had just reached me the day before, while BLACK SUNDAY is still on the way (I hope!). On their part, when I explained the situation to DeepDiscountDVD, they were willing to reship the items at no cost whatsoever but, as I had feared, they no longer hold copies of the WEREWOLF disc (as it is now officially on moratorium) in their stores!

    To be honest, this is not the first time that items I had ordered got lost in transit:

    From PLAY.COM: THE EXORCIST – 25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION (Region 1), also OOP at the time of my order, was shipped twice – with the first copy arriving a week or so after the second (shipped three weeks later!) and which I duly shipped back to this U.K. supplier; I also have a sneaking suspicion that my order of LOST HORIZON (Region 2), shipped at the beginning of March, has gone the same route – “Lost”, I suppose, is right in this case [sic]!

    From DEEP DISCOUNT DVD: MONTY PYTHON AND THE HOLY GRAIL – SPECIAL EDITION was shipped to me no less than 3 times - and I only received the 3rd copy, some 5 months after my initial order (!); a package including REBECCA (Criterion) and THE STUNT MAN - LIMITED EDITION also never reached me – and by the time the replacement copies were shipped, the store had run out of the Limited Edition (a 2-Disc set), and I only received the regular single-disc version of THE STUNT MAN! I was so infuriated at this that I did not want to keep it and I promptly sent it back to them – they then offered to replace it with another disc and I chose MY MAN GODFREY (Criterion), which I’m still waiting for! To make matters worse, when I resorted to another store (DVD Box Office) where THE STUNT MAN – LIMITED EDITION was supposedly available, I was informed via e-mail from them at a later date that it is presently “backordered”, and has remained so for the past month!

    Other orders I have placed with both DeepDiscountDVD and DVD Box Office include 10 Charlie Chaplin DVDs which also happen to be OOP – THE CHAPLIN MUTUALS VOL. 1 and LIMELIGHT are also listed as “backordered” at one store and THE KID/A DOG’S LIFE and MONSIEUR VERDOUX, likewise, in the other!

    I am sure you can empathize with my present state of mind at this whole charade: why on earth should a DVD go on moratorium is beyond me, and as regards to why anybody should ‘tamper’ with other people’s valuable property, I won’t even say a word. Still, I would like to know if any of you have gone through something similar to this. Curiously enough, I was discussing this same subject with a local VHS/DVD rental store owner and he told me that 14 DVDs he ordered recently from PLAY.COM never even reached him - on their part, they were willing to refund him the entire sum but also advised him not to order from them again! The thing we agreed on is that this never used to happen with packages containing VHS only!

    Although I don’t blame the DVD stores themselves for what has happened to my lost packages and stolen items, ordering DVDs from far away countries is beginning to look like a hazardous enterprise and a mean feat in itself or, putting it another way, like taking a trip to the Bermuda Triangle!!

    I sure envy those of you who simply buy their DVDs from local shops (rather than online) and I would appreciate it if you would offer me suggestions about how to remedy my present purchasing dilemma or, more precisely, where I may still find copies of WEREWOLF OF LONDON/SHE-WOLF OF LONDON, THE STUNT MAN – LIMITED EDITION and the Charlie Chaplin DVDs.
     
  2. ChristianB

    ChristianB Stunt Coordinator

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    Sorry to hear about your dilemma. That's a lot of wasted time and money [​IMG]
    One question I have is how exactly do these stores ship to you overseas? By ordering large quantities of DVDs and only using regular airmail or a bulk mailer system seems rather risky.
    I'd rather have the assurance of a courier or some other method which is traceable. Therefore if something does happen to the package (damage, loss, theft etc), you can claim for this with the courier.
    Christian
     
  3. Garrett Lundy

    Garrett Lundy Producer

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    On a similar note: If your the greedy underhanded bastard that lifted my copy of Kevin Smith's DOGMA from my apartment, Please return it. Ot at least come and steal the amary DVD-case, so I'm not constantly reminded of it's loss.[​IMG]
     
  4. Mark_Wilson

    Mark_Wilson Screenwriter

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    Perhaps you should try a different method of shipment, perhaps DHL or even Registered Mail. Registered Mail is under 'lock and key' at all times.
     
  5. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    I guess we here in the USA have it lucky where our packages are not censored, have plenty of direct online stores as well as B&M to drive to.

    I am with the other guys, have it sent via Airborne Express, DHL, or whomever services Malta to be able to track it down and have the courier be responsible for replacement costs. I know you want to go the cheap route with shipping but in your particular case, cheap isn't always the best way to go.
     
  6. Kyle McKnight

    Kyle McKnight Cinematographer

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    Damn, that sucks. I'll make note if I ever start selling DVD's not to ship to Malta.
     

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