Why Are Criterions STILL Overpriced?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by MichaelEl, Mar 11, 2009.

  1. Ray_R

    Ray_R Screenwriter

    Feb 22, 2004
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    What do you get off on saying true film fans who watch TCM and IFC are in their 40's? I just turned 30 and I love older and more obscure films and I still watch alot of mainstream stuff.
    I only own three Criterion titles at the moment:

    The Rock
    Silence of the Lambs (OOP for $5!)

    I'm also a huge fan of Kurosawa and purposefully aced the film history class way back earlier this decade which was about him that one semester.
    I even have a major complaint at Warner Bros. and that's about I want more Errol Flynn movies on DVD to purchase! Yes, me, a younger person can actually be a fan of film and have a diverse taste in them. Yeah, I certainly did enjoy Michael Bays TRANSFORMERS and I certainly also enjoy North by Northwest alongwith alot of other Hitchcock films I've seen. There're still many titles I'm eager to purchase and alot of those are even Criterion and from other companies. I even import alot of the times due to an Oppo player I own. Alot of DVD's I'm still keeping even when I upgrade to HDDVD or Blu-ray since there are several titles I'm highly fond of which I'm still keeping the versions I hunted down for.
  2. MichaelEl

    MichaelEl Stunt Coordinator

    May 10, 2006
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    People in their 40s grew up watching a lot of classic and obscure films, younger generations generally didn't, and so tend not to respond as positively to that sort of material.
  3. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

    Nov 15, 2004
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    The basement of the FBI building
    Yep, everything was better in the old days. [​IMG] I doubt the number of people that were in their twenties in the 1980's that were interested in classic movies is any less than today. If anything, the easy availability of titles on DVD has probably made more people interested in classic film than 20 or 30 years ago.
  4. Pete York

    Pete York Supporting Actor

    Dec 1, 2004
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    Why are you taking this as some sort of generational slam, Travis? I don't think it was intended as one. In fact I don't think you're going back far enough--you make the comparison with people in their twenties, I think MichaelEl means much younger.

    I'm not even 40, but growing up in New York, broadcast television--all seven(!!) channels (CBS, NBC, WNEW, ABC, WOR, WPIX, WNET)--constantly ran classic films to fill up their programming. On a weekend afternoon, you might find THE AFRICAN QUEEN on Ch.5, KING KONG on Ch.9, and THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD on Ch. 11. There had to be more kids watching those movies in the 70's/80's than watching them today, strictly based on opportunity. That's what was on, so that's what you watched. And it's easier, surely, to get that person into those films for life than it is to introduce those same films to a 25-year-old today and get the same reaction.

    Each successive generation's viewing became more compartmentalized with more channels and options available and the disappearance of classics from free tv led to less exposure. The point is not which generation was/is more likely to embrace classic films, but that the age in which people are exposed to them in general is later and later. Thus whenever the audience is measured, whether it be for TCM or the demographic for who's buying classic dvds, I imagine it skews slightly older than say, anything on Adult Swim or Spike or MTV.

    Certainly a 10-year-old today with such an inclination, and parents with a Netflix account, has it made over his 'partner' from the 70's/80's in some ways, but there are less of them--their interest blooms at a later age. Heck, thanks to the Million Dollar Movie I knew the theme from GONE WITH THE WIND when I was 5! And then they would show something like MAGIC TOWN or THE KING AND FOUR QUEENS or INVADERS FROM MARS or THE TALES OF HOFFMAN. You know there were movies shown on tv that have never been on home video. So the statement that 'people in their forties grew up on films that succeeding generations didn't' is likely on its face, true.
  5. scribe1964

    scribe1964 Extra

    Feb 25, 2009
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    I grew up watching those channels, too. Not only were old movies always on, but there was hardly anything else to watch! I must have seen dozens of John Wayne movies as a kid in the early 70s. AND I remember the week WOR ran King Kong every night of the week (this was in prime time!).
  6. Jacqui

    Jacqui Stunt Coordinator

    Feb 23, 2006
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    I turned 27 last week and I am more than happy to pay Criterion prices. This is my current status.


    The Lady Vanishes
    The 39 Steps
    49th Parallel
    Ace in the Hole
    Brute Force
    A Canterbury Tale
    Carnival of Souls
    Fiend without a Face
    The Furies
    Shock Corridor
    The Virgin Spring
    Night and Fog
    The Naked Prey
    The Small Back Room
    Eyes without a Face

    On order via the DVDPacific Criterion sale

    Haxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages
    Pickup on South Street
    The Naked City
    Night and The City
    The Night Porter


    And God Created Woman
    Army of Shadows
    Berlin Alexanderplatz
    Day of Wrath
    The Fallen Idol
    Forbidden Games
    House of Games
    The Killers : 1946 Version
    The Last Wave
    The Long Good Friday
    The Passion of Joan of Arc
    Peeping Tom
    The Rules of the Game
    The Spy Who Came in From the Cold
    Thieves Highway
    The Third Man
    Through a Glass Darkly
    The Tin Drum
    The White Dog
    Unfaithfully Yours
    Monsters and Madmen

    I would also love to purchase Salo, but it is banned in Australia.
  7. Peter McM

    Peter McM Supporting Actor

    Nov 18, 1999
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    Indianapolis, IN
    Real Name:
    To this day I still only own one Criterion: the now OOP The Unbearable Lightness of Being.
  8. DrBenway

    DrBenway Auditioning

    Sep 4, 2007
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    Before cable the only thing on TV late night was old movies. Most of the time they were the best thing on but often they were the only thing on. No computer, no video games, no choice. Kids were rejecting their parents world more violently than ever and were not interested in the music, The War or The Depression but The Marx Brothers, The Wolfman and James Dean were iconic images. Today's kids are more clever and educated in many ways than we were, it's just that with all their options they aren't forced to watch old movies and unless someone in their life introduces them to Fred and Ginger they won't be much inclined to.
  9. MarcoBiscotti

    MarcoBiscotti Producer

    Sep 2, 2003
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    I don't think there's ever been a studio who's maintained such consistent quality over the years in relation to production costs; It's totally justifiable. Especially when considering that Criterion don't own any catalog titles and all of their film acquisitions are licensed out at higher cost than what it takes for the major studios to release their films. Yet the quality of restorations, transfers, supplements and content not to mention packaging and presentation is entirely representative of the price consumers pay and entirely worth it in my opinion! I'd sooner pay $27 for Anthony Mann's classic The Furies in beautiful packaging with extra features than I would put up the same cost for one of WHV's dreadful burned "Archive" dvd-r discs of many much lesser films...
  10. Sean A

    Sean A Stunt Coordinator

    Oct 15, 2003
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    As a New York kid of the 1970s, I remember it well : those channels were my film education. Channel 5 used to often run a whole week of late night movies devoted to a particular star, like Cagney or Bette Davis, while nobody of that time could forget that Thanksgiving meant "King Kong" and it's sequels. In that pre-VCR era, you often had to forego sleep to catch a rarely shown classic . I remeber my mother actually let me play hookey from school one time only to catch a 1AM showing of "The Heiress" on Channel 5 the night before.
  11. Bradley-E

    Bradley-E Screenwriter

    Nov 11, 2003
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    They have to pay for the licensing of these films unlike the studios who have a library in place. You pay more to have the priviledge of having great films on DVD and Blu ray that you may not have otherwise.

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