One of many joys in life is when you go to the nearest electronics retailer store on a Tuesday afternoon to purchase a newly released movie on DVD. Four months pass and you have seen all the extra content on the DVD and have watched the movie plenty of times to remember most of the dialogue in the film. You sit down and watch television, and commercials are on. You pay no attention and wait for the show to come back on, but then it happens.
“Available Tuesday, own the limited edition epic super unrated extended director’s cut with three extra minutes, two new documentaries, more commentary and three new deleted scenes.”
And you know what the sad thing is? People fall into the trap of re-purchasing the film they already own, as if a few new features will fully enhance their experience watching the same film.
The movie studios are laughing and counting money, while fans of these films with multiple DVD versions go out and purchase each new version coming out, feeling that they would not be true fans if they did not own the most recent version.
“The Lord of the Rings: the Fellowship of the Ring” DVD was released on Aug. 8 2002, containing two discs with bonus features.
Three months later, the extended version was released with a longer version of the film. The extended version contained two more discs and more documentaries. The four-disc set was boxed nicely to give it a nicer presentation.
Four years after having released the film on DVD, there is now another “edition” of the film. The third edition contains both the theatrical and extended versions as well as a few new documentaries to accompany the already extensive extra features.
George Lucas is going down that route as well, by recently releasing DVDs of the first “Star Wars” trilogy that contain the original and enhanced versions, which are mainly geared toward true fans of the films.
Trilogies are not the only films that movie studios re-release expecting fans to cough up more cash.
The cult classic comedy “Bad Santa” has also followed suit.
The DVD was originally released on June 22, 2004 with one version being the film shown in theaters, and the other unrated and extended, called “Badder Santa.” Guess what kind of version is next? “Bad Santa: Director’s Cut” is next in line this October.
All these special editions being released are targeting devoted fans, further proving that the movie industry will do whatever it takes for that extra buck.
For the “Lord of the Rings” fans, those who must own every copy, have, by now, shelled out a good amount of money. Adding the regular version of each film from the trilogy, the extended version and the newest version, adds up to nearly $300.
Taking advantage of the film’s fans in this way is not right, and fans should be able to choose which versions they would like to purchase.
Going to an electronic store and seeing over four versions of a film on DVD is just ridiculous. How can there be that many different versions of the same movie?
They are taking advantage of the consumer, and fans should be more careful of falling into the marketing trap and buying these DVDs.
I bought “Sin City” when it was released, and months later, the Director’s Cut came out. I was furious. As much as I loved that movie, I couldn’t go and buy the same movie for just some extended scenes and more extras. They are not going to get my money.
All these re-releases and new editions of DVDs has left me skeptical of buying the film the day it comes out. I usually check the extras on the back of the box to see if it has enough. If it does not, most likely a newer edition is bound to hit shelves within several months.
Maybe I’ll just wait 25 years for the 25 Anniversary Deluxe Edition. Just to be safe.