The issue I have with studios is the laziness of the way they are treating their catalog titles. Why it has to be DVD-Rs? Why can't they set a proper system where produce a limited set of catalog titles, have them pressed, include extras and sell them on a limited time or quantity basis through e-tailers? I refuse to buy these overpriced DVD-Rs where the quality is no better than VHS or a bootleg.
Indeed. The major studios are on one hand happy to chastise people for illegally downloading their films but at the same time they put no effort into making them available themselves. You can't charge $20 for a DVD-R and expect people to be thankful.
I'm just thankful we have companies like Criterion, MoC, Artificial Eye, BFI, RHV, Dolmen/Cristaldi, Edition Filmmuseum etc. who are willing to put time and effort in to make excellent DVD releases, which are great value-for-money due to the fantastic transfers, optional subtitling and extras that help enhance and contextualize the films themselves. I'm currently studying Rocco e i suoi fratelli
in class and I can't explain how handy it is to be able to have a private copy of this film with a booklet and an extra disk full of extras to help start to analyse the film and the environment it was created in.
I only got into quality films (and their DVDs)
last summer when I purchased a few German and Italian language titles to help get back into the swing of things before arriving at university. I was disappointed with the quality of the releases I bought: Sophie Scholl
was non-anamorphic, Cinema Paradiso
wasn't the OAR. Wondering why I had bothered, I was going to start just downloading the films instead as I didn't feel like that they were worth my money. To cut a long story short I ended up discovering this forum and along with it the likes of Criterion, MoC and BFI etc. As a result I have discovered a whole treasure trove of films on fantastic DVD releases, which I probably wouldn't have otherwise been aware of.
I guess what I'm getting at is that if I hadn't discovered the specialist DVD labels I'd likely to be downloading any films that I would be interested in due to be disillusioned with what I had previously bought. Now I'm eagerly anticipating my Lubitsch in Berlin
set, looking forward to the likes of M
on Blu-ray and looking forward to buying some RHV and Cristaldi/Dolmen titles when I'm in Italy later this year.