The sorry state of DVD rentals.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Roby Adams, Nov 15, 2001.

  1. Roby Adams

    Roby Adams Stunt Coordinator

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    Ok, here goes.
    There are a crap-load of smaller DVD titles and reissues that I cannot find anywhere.
    ANYWHERE.
    Short Example:
    The War Room
    Live Nude Girls Unite(documentary)
    A Better Place
    Open Your Eyes(Spanish film)
    Suspiria
    I can’t get these titles locally at any rental chain near me, nor can I get them online at dvdovernight.com, rentmydvd.com, or cafedvd.com.
    There are also some reissued titles that I would like rent.
    Ex:
    Basic Instinct SE
    The Siege DTS
    2001 – remastered
    The Shining – remastered
    There are others as well. DVD rental companies both B&M and online do not seem to give a crap about smaller hard to find films or reissues. Most consider Memento as ‘independent’ as they are willing to go.
    For me VHS is not an option. It is basically the excrement of the studios.
    I also can’t afford to buy every title I want ‘sight unseen’. The companies who rent DVDs need to get off their butts. I’ve e-mailed all three online companies I listed above and gotten only one response. I asked very nicely if they had any plans to carry the titles listed. Only one company responded and it was a half-assed attempt at that. They only said “We already carry Basic, Siege, 2001, and The Shining.” Of course they are the old versions. In my e-mail I took care to specifically state which versions I was looking for even to the point of including catalog numbers and links to DVD sites. The person who responded didn’t even address the other titles at all.
    It’s really frustrating. We need an online rental company that caters to the true DVDphiles and film buffs.
    Note: I have specifically not addressed netflix.com because they are the spawn of Satan. I refuse to do business with them since they seem content to rip off everyone. 2 weeks in the ‘released to ship’ category? Losers.
    Sorry for the tone of this post. As you can tell I am very big fan of movies and DVD.
    You better be glad I didn’t address rentmydvd.com’s practice of renting each disc of a multi-disc set separately, or BB and HV having only the pan and scan version of titles that are released in both formats. The profanity would have been really flying then.
    [​IMG]
    ------------------
    200 and 40 dollars worth'a puddin'
    My DVDs
    [Edited last by Roby Adams on November 15, 2001 at 10:20 PM]
    [Edited last by Roby Adams on November 15, 2001 at 10:21 PM]
     
  2. SteveGon

    SteveGon Executive Producer

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    I know the feeling! However, my local Hollywood Video has been putting more dvds on their shelves - I was surprised to see some Criterion titles like Autumn Sonata and The Last Temptation of Christ. While they don't have everything I'd like to see, it's better than it used to be. And at .99 a rental for five days, I can't complain too much...
     
  3. GlennH

    GlennH Cinematographer

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    I agree. It's very difficult to find anywhere to rent many DVDs. And forget trying to find new or special edition versions if they already have an earlier one.
    Until such time as the rental places (local B&M or online) improve their libraries immensely, I'm convinced that the only way to see certain titles is to buy them.
    Of course, there is the option of buying, watching and then selling online via EBay, Amazon Marketplace, or Yahoo Warehouse. Or trading online.
    Pros and Cons of Buying then Selling instead of Renting:
    Pros
    • No due date, so no rush to watch
    • No scratches or blemishes on the DVD, much less likely to have problems playing
    • You get to see all the original packaging, and all discs in a multi-disc set
    • Can decide to keep it if you really like it without paying for a rental first and buying later
    • Often can nearly break even or make a small profit reselling if you get a good deal on the initial sale (preorder discounts, coupons, etc.)
    Cons
    • Higher up-front cash or credit outlay
    • No due date, so no rush to watch, so you don't for a long time and you're out the money in the meantime
    • More hassle and time required to list for sale, package, and ship a DVD than to just return a rental
    • May not be able to sell certain titles easily
    Well, those are the ones I can think of offhand anyway.
    [Edited last by Glenn Heberle on November 16, 2001 at 01:15 AM]
     
  4. MikeF

    MikeF Stunt Coordinator

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  5. Alexander_I

    Alexander_I Auditioning

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    To Roby
    "For me VHS is not an option. It is basically the excrement of the studios. "
    Before i will go on with my humble reply.... do you mean that VHS-users are excrement-eaters?
    ------------------
     
  6. GlennH

    GlennH Cinematographer

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    quote: --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    More hassle and time required to list for sale, package, and ship a DVD than to just return a rental
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    That's something of an understatement, don't you think?
    [/quote]
    Well, no, it's not that much of an understatement. I've sold DVDs on Amazon Marketplace and it really isn't too time-consuming or difficult once you get the supplies you need. After you set up your seller account (easy to do) you can list an item for sale in literally a minute or so by just clicking the link next to the normal Amazon item listing. Then Amazon alerts you when it's sold and gives you the address of where to send it. I can then print out a mailing label and slap it on a padded envelope and package the DVD in just 5 minutes or so. I take it to the Post Office the next morning (2 minutes from my home) on the way to work and send it via Media Mail. Amazon takes a 99 cents + 15% commission. You get the money direct-deposited in your bank account every two weeks. So, as long as you get it down to a science like that it's pretty painless. But it may not work for everyone.
    [Edited last by Glenn Heberle on November 16, 2001 at 09:43 AM]
     
  7. Jodee

    Jodee Screenwriter

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    You don't even need to buy padded envelopes or shipping materials. What I do is save all my DVD boxes that my online packages come in. I order a lot from DDD and they have great single-DVD boxes. Just remove the label and use a new one. Saves $$ and helps the environment as well.
    I sell my unwanted DVDs at Half.com and find it ridiculously easy, especially compared to auctions. Just type in the UPC, describe the condition, set a price, and wait for it to sell.
    I have sold a ton of VHS and laserdisc at Half, as well as quite a few DVDs. They take a 15% fee, with no listing fees, and you even get a shipping reimbursement.
    If I buy a film sight unseen, I can usually get most of my money back selling it used. It's like a free or cheap rental if I don't like it.
    [Edited last by Jodee on November 16, 2001 at 11:09 AM]
     
  8. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Back when I rented VHS, I was frustrated a lot when stores would not have the newer tapes with Hi-Fi audio. The old tapes with only linear stereo only play in MONO on most Hi-Fi machines, so I had to inspect a lot of tapes to make sure they were the reissues with Hi-Fi. (I finally got one of the few machines that does play linear stereo, so that's no longer a problem). When I moved up to laserdisc, there was one big store with a great selection but they wouldn't get in the reissues of older titles in letterbox format, just keeping the older pan-and-scan (and laser-rotted) versions they already had. Given that, I can see that rental places would be reluctant to get in new copies of previously released movies just for DTS and things like that.
    Luckily I haven't ever had to rent anything on DVD, everything I've wanted has been reasonably-priced enough that I've just bought everything, and I never get rid of anything because I'm a materialistic bastard [​IMG]
     
  9. Roby Adams

    Roby Adams Stunt Coordinator

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    I've just sent e-mails to all four dvd rental companies with a link to this thread. Hopefully someone will read it and make changes.
    ------------------
    200 and 40 dollars worth'a puddin'
    My DVDs
    --'What', then 'ever', immediately followed by 'dude'--
     
  10. Roby Adams

    Roby Adams Stunt Coordinator

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    Well I got a response. This is why dvdovernight.com continues to be my favorite.
    quote:
    Dear Roby:
    We will order these titles. We do appreciate your suggestions and do like to carry hard to find titles here at DVDO. We don't really want to be your average local video store, but an alternative.
    Thanks again.
    Tina
    Customer Service
    DVDOvernight.com
    [/quote]
    My e-mail to them:
    quote:
    From: "Roby Adams"
    To: [email protected]
    Subject: Titles I would like to see added.
    There is currently a discussion going on here - http://www.hometheaterforum.com/uub/...ML/033028.html
    about DVDOvernight and your competitors.
    There are a lot of titles that are very hard to find and I think that it would be beneficial for you to carry them.
    Some of the discs I and other DVD renters have trouble getting are new editions of previously released films. These titles frequently have enhanced picture and sound along with bonus materials not available on the original release.
    Some specific titles I would like to rent from you are:
    Basic Instinct: Special Limited Edition - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=34279
    The Fugitive SE - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=26710
    The Shining 'remastered' - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=26762
    The Siege DTS - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=21137
    I have included links to DVDEmpire which should have catalog numbers to better help you determine which discs are the new and old releases.
    There are also quite a few independent and foreign titles that cannot be had anywhere. I have listed some that I am interested in below:
    The War Room - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...4&item_id=3596
    Live Nude Girls Unite! (documentary) - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=33480
    A Better Place - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=11346
    Open Your Eyes (Spanish film) - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=39431
    Suspiria - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=35715
    The Crimson Rivers - http://www.dvdempire.com/Exec/v4_ite...&item_id=38974
    I enjoy your service and out of all the online DVD rental companies you seem to be the best.
    Thanks.
    ---------------------------------------
    Roby Adams
    [/quote]
    ------------------
    200 and 40 dollars worth'a puddin'
    My DVDs
    --'What', then 'ever', immediately followed by 'dude'--
    [Edited last by Roby Adams on November 17, 2001 at 05:27 PM]
     
  11. Takayuki Kihara

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    Location:
    Tokyo
    Real Name:
    Takayuki Kihara
    I've been selling my multimedia items (Videos, DVDs, CDs) at eBay (sold hundreds of them), and it's definitely fun. Of course you'd have to write a good description of the item and it's very time consuming to do so, but it's overall a rewarding experience if the item gets sold at the higher price (sometimes more than what it's worth) due to the good written description.
    I seem to remember reading in this forum that Anchor Bay titles are prone to break (think of "Opera," "Frankenstein Created Woman," etc.), so one of the online retailers (Netflix) decided to stop carrying their titles. It's truly a shame, but what can I do? Well, I was forced to buy "Suspiria" even before seeing the movie.
     
  12. Roby Adams

    Roby Adams Stunt Coordinator

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    I got another response. This one from rentmydvd.com.

     

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