Whether you see films in the cinema or deliberately wait for it to come out on DVD / Blu-Ray, the cost of keeping up with recent blockbusters can mean silly prices.
High Street stores do themselves out of business making prices higher and higher. But what’s behind that trend? HMV want to stock a vast catalogue of choices so you can’t blame them for trying to make a bit more on the volume stuff to subsidise the more arthouse films (how many copies of Amour do you expect them to shift in comparison to Avengers Assemble?)
Supermarkets only stock the Top 10 so they buy pallet loads of them, offering further discounts if you’ve bought your own weight in beans. How can entertainment stores compete? Well, they don’t, do they?
As someone who used an HMV voucher in January, just 8 hours before they announced their administration, it’s not hard to see how they got themselves in such a pickle. Not accepting giftcards online? How very 90s of them. LackLustre Video are another to wonder where the 90s went. Going outside in the rain to visit one of their soulless stores? No thanks.
But the traditional outlets’ main competition comes not from Tesco and Sainsbury, or even from illegal downloading. It’s from sites like play.com which sell a wide range of media at decent prices and with prompt delivery.
Even Amazon can sometimes still come up with a bargain but usually play.com comes up trumps.
And then there’s the other, perhaps more satisfying option; eBay. Yes, I know what you’re thinking. We’ve all seen people listing films on eBay at many times the price they can be bought for in the real world, but these are presumably the people you see walking down the street with their mouths open. But in amongst those pointless listing, there are sellers offering perfectly good quality films that they’ve taken out of the cellophane and watched just once. I’m happy to be the second person to watch that disc if I can buy it for £3.99 including postage.
And once I’ve built up a few of these, I bundle them together and sell them on via eBay to the next person. I’ve usually got more by bundling than I would have done for the individual films.
So, if people think the trend is firmly away from physical media to downloads, I’m not so sure. The route for getting those physical copies has changed but it’ll be a while before we’re all using Netflix.
How do you generally watch most of your new releases, and how do you get them?
Image courtesy of porbital / FreeDigitalPhotos.net