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PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2016 9:04 am 

Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2009 8:38 am
Trees wrote:
When I answered that question, I was talking specifically about 4K projectors at cineplexes... it's very easy to spot the difference.


Most DCP's are not 4K, so whether the projector is or is not is a rather moot point, on the whole. You are making shaky claims here, as was pointed out earlier. I've seen 2K DCP's at a Dolby Cinema, and they were about the best (digital-acquisitioned) things I've seen projected digitally. 5K camera files, so that had to matter, apparently. So I know that the contrast of a Dolby Cinema DCP can be amazing. On the other hand, I've seen amazing 4K restorations like 'Lawrence...' on a huge screen, looking pristine as well, i.e. - it depends.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2016 10:58 am 
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Emilio wrote:
Trees wrote:
When I answered that question, I was talking specifically about 4K projectors at cineplexes... it's very easy to spot the difference.


Most DCP's are not 4K, so whether the projector is or is not is a rather moot point, on the whole. You are making shaky claims here, as was pointed out earlier. I've seen 2K DCP's at a Dolby Cinema, and they were about the best (digital-acquisitioned) things I've seen projected digitally. 5K camera files, so that had to matter, apparently. So I know that the contrast of a Dolby Cinema DCP can be amazing. On the other hand, I've seen amazing 4K restorations like 'Lawrence...' on a huge screen, looking pristine as well, i.e. - it depends.


It doesn't seem like there is anything we are actually disagreeing about. I saw some 2K footage from the Tom Cruise film "Oblivion" graded and projected with Dolby Laser Vision, and as you mention, the increased contrast, particularly at the edges, increases the apparent sharpness and resolution.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2016 4:06 pm 
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https://twitter.com/loneblockbuster


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 11:52 am 
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We will NEVER raise our late fees because that wouldn't be fair to you and we can't figure out how to change prices on our computer.

In an effort to cut costs, our automatic doors will be automatic between 2 and 6pm and normal doors the rest of the time.

Whoever keeps putting Passion of the Christ in the comedy section can burn in hell.

Our manager used to have a rule about inter-staff dating until she realized there was absolutely nothing she could do to stop us. Nothing.

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@loneblockbuster My mom JUST found that lost copy of #TheBeach. Wants to know if she can just keep it at this point.
The Last Blockbuster Retweeted:That's fine, just give it back when she passes.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 1:27 pm 
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Hey people stealing our candy, jokes on you, most of that stuff expired in 2008.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 1:30 pm 
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I'll be honest and say that I can still not tell whether this is real or a parody account.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 1:38 pm 
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TMDaines wrote:
I'll be honest and say that I can still not tell whether this is real or a parody account.



Seriously?


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 3:01 pm 
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My favorite is the one about the place next door threatening to put in a Redbox if they don't mow their patch of grass.


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 3:34 pm 
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The following half-baked rant is a reaction to the Scream Factory steelbook releases of John Carpenter’s films and Fargo, so apologies in advance for lack of cohesion, ill-formed arguments/theories and poor grammar. But perhaps some of this mess can get a discussion going by its end.

While I’m not a huge fan of steelbooks, or limited alternative packaging on releases in general, the fact that these Shout/Scream releases can be produced (and will probably sell out) is utterly deflating as a film collector, particularly as a Canadian one.

This past month, HMV, one of Canada’s last corporate distributors of physical media, closed its doors – this, after SUNRISE RECORDS, a larger independent chain in Ontario, did the same a few years ago. Sunrise was a bigger hit to our local market because, while it was a larger store, its main downtown Toronto locations were staffed by folks who were clearly film fans, and who ordered not just for the general consumer, but the art/foreign/off the beaten path film collector. They had pretty much everything you could want, and if they didn’t, they would happily order, and at not much of a mark-up. I have no idea what happened to those folks, but I can’t imagine their skill sets, especially the older ones, were effortlessly transferable.

HMV was more corporate, of course, but they had very deep stock (albeit at more of a cost mark-up to the customer), and still felt like a small independent that supported local talent much of the time. And if you waited long enough, you could often pair the more esoteric stock that didn’t really move with something else for a really good two-for-something deal, or at the very least, not worrying about missing out on a competitively-priced new release of something.

The biggest hit to Toronto was when SUSPECT VIDEO, one of the city's most beloved video stores, that pretty much had everything that you could ever want in an alternative culture video store, and that allowed you to develop a rich unconventional film education on own your own, closed its doors this year when condo development booted them from their almost-thirty year location within HONEST ED’S. QUEEN VIDEO, our city’s other brand name independent, is barely alive anymore.

TARGET abandoned our country before making it through even one fiscal year, fucking over a shitload of Canadian suppliers (ordering tons of product, entering into receivership, not paying for that product, then shipping it, still wrapped on the pallet, back to the U.S.) and smaller merchants and restaurants who signed long-term leases for space under the impression left by realtors and landlords that Target was going to anchor foot traffic and customers to their new location. Now they can’t find a single comparable retailer in size to fill the cavernous spaces of those dusty shells.

BEST BUY (Canada)’s movie departments are embarrassingly stocked, or simply exist in the form of discount bins of dreck that no one really wants. I’m sure the only reason why they bother with any physical copies of film anymore is to move major Disney/Star Wars/Superhero discs upon release.

WALMART CANADA is just as shit, and rooting through the shelves and bins there incurs a distinctly a sleazy feeling in the film buff. This won’t come as a shock to most, but WALMART, I’ve decided, is for people who actively hate film.

Not one of those retailers can be trusted to stock even major studio releases anymore (this year, copies of the fucking Oscar-winner for best picture of the year, MOONLIGHT, were noticeably absent from all Best Buy stores in Toronto on its release day, which I, of course, don’t think was some sort of conspiracy of corporate racism, but just an oblivious type of ignorance about the existence or marketing potential of non-mainstream films), never mind rarer things that I actually have to seek out. I would never think of asking a staff member at any of the box stores about anything stock-related, as they would simply look at me like I was speaking another language.

Only BAY STREET VIDEO remains, and it truly is an oasis of friendly, knowledgeable staff, with a massive selection of fairly priced films, and really the only video store worth visiting in Toronto.

All of this to say that, it is becoming increasingly hard to be a consumer of physical media in Canada.

Last week, Leslie Feist released her first album in six years. Here, Feist is a big deal. Without getting into whether or not you like her music, I don’t think anyone could argue that she creates her art organically, and is not someone motivated by the allure of large sales, but only by whatever muse she finds within. She just happens to be one of the few artists that has crossed over into mainstream success. This new release had completely flown under my radar, so when it was covered in just about every media publication in our city last Friday, I thought, “Awesome, I’ll just walk on over to the record store on lunch and pick up a copy.”

But I couldn’t. Because we don’t have a record store in the downtown core of the largest city in the country anymore.

There are still amazing independent stores like SOUNDSCAPES and SONIC BOOM, and I’m so happy that they (and BAY STREET VIDEO) will probably absorb a lot of HMVs customers, but they are neighbourhood shops, a transit ride away, not a walk, and simply not convenient for a quick lunch hour jaunt. So there was literally nowhere to buy a major release from one of Canada’s most successful independent artists that wasn’t more than thirty minutes away by transit. And it’s not limited to her. Celine Dion fans would be in the same conundrum.

That leaves transit to a neighbourhood retailer or Amazon. What happens when the last of the locals folds?

Other examples:

Warner Archive blu-rays only make it up to independent retailers here as expensive imports, and even then, it’s usually weeks later than U.S. stores, if they come at all. Most aren’t listed on Amazon Canada until after the release date, and even then, only through third party sellers. Warner. Archive. I know these discs are limited in pressing, but this is the exact same parent company that owns Turner Movie Network, and who releases Harry Potter and Batman movies. They have the exact same paths of supply and distribution as those films do, for fucksakes, but I’m still waiting for my blu-ray copy of RIDE THE HIGH COUTRY to arrive at BAY STREET VIDEO almost a month after its release. And in all honesty, it really shouldn’t be this difficult for a local indie retailer, going out of their way to provide excellent customer service, to access the product they pre-ordered months in advance, and I have to ask why their pre-orders were not accounted for in the production and distribution of the product in the first place?

I’m an unabashed horror buff, and have been since I was a kid watching Magic Shadows on TVO with my dad every Saturday night. I am also not ashamed to admit I was really excited about the PHANTASM box set from Well Go, even though, deep down, I know that three-fifths of that set is shit. Doesn’t matter. I loved the first few back in high school, and I was going to get this set no matter what. Until I just couldn’t. Not because I’d changed my mind, but because not one single copy made it to a retailer north of the 49th parallel. Well-Go’s distribution deal allocated a certain percentage to Amazon US, some went to DiabolikDVDV, and the remaining copies to Best Buy box stores in the States. I’m fairly certain that none of the set’s limited nature was disclosed in the press release of the set because nothing went to Amazon Canada, even though the pre-order links were available for months in advance. Keep in mind that this company, who bid and won on the production and distribution of this set, and who is responsible for these region A-locked copies finding their way to customers throughout all of North America, very quietly chose to ignore a nation of customers, reasoning that copies of a $75 box set would somehow sell more to Best Buy walk-ins than guaranteed pre-orders through the Canadian wing of the major distributor of media in the world. And worse, the small independent shop, who keeps companies like Well Go and Arrow and Scream going on a grass roots level, and who would probably benefit a great deal from a release like this, were completely fucked over.

Arrow US releases were almost prohibitively expensive to import into our country for years until they worked out a local distribution deal. Now that they’ve come down to a reasonable price, Criterions have taken up the mantle. There isn’t a Criterion released here that is under $40 CAN, and they never, ever go on sale at Amazon Canada. Importing them into our country during an amazon or B&N sale isn’t cost effective either, because our dollar has dropped so much, and after import fees and the higher cost of even the most basic international shipping are tacked on, you wind up paying the same $40 CAD per disc.

Scream Factory releases are about $35. I like Scream. I like the idea behind them and their releases, which is to pay respect to a genre traditionally marginalized as juvenile or amateur amongst most, and I actually have no issue with them re-releasing classic genre movies that have already been well-represented on blu-ray, like CARRIE or INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS or THE THING or MIDNIGHT RUN, in new deluxe editions that really are the last home video word on the film. And when they were $24, I felt better about taking a chance on lower-profile things like PUMPKINHEAD or I, MADMAN or (more recently) TALES FROM THE HOOD) being as nostalgically fun as I remember them two and a half decades ago. But nostalgia, for some reason, doesn’t feel so good at $35, before tax.

So this is all just a very bloated way of asking, is this regionalism? Are Canadians just gnats to U.S. companies, beholden to deliver their product simply because of contractual obligation? We are certainly afterthoughts to distributors south of our border, that is if they remember us at all. Our avenues to accessing physical media seem to be disappearing faster in Canada than those in the U.S., and I really don’t want to have to start increasing my purchasing from amazon to cover off that apathy from US suppliers. I like supporting my local shop.

To me (and trust me, I know that this is very much a first-world problem, so my own internal politics are still very much unresolved about why this thing bothers me so much when I have still have all my own personal, career and family issues to work out), it’s vexing when distributors put together multiple versions of films, still in print, with high-end packaging, rather than concentrating on new or ignored catalogue releases, or fixing the distribution model/path to an entire country you’re responsible for delivering your product to. Limited alternative packaging plays upon the worst kind of OCD in collectors, because, after years of being conditioned to seek out rarities, it makes you think your life will somehow be better if you own a greater rarity. It reminds me of the “variant cover” scheme in the comic book world, which, along with other types of sales strategies that emphasized gimmickry over content, kind of forced a an implosion and collapse of that medium in the late nineties/early two-thousands, and may be doing the same thing right now.

Let’s hope that’s not case for physical releases of film. It took years for comics to recover (only to repeat the same mistakes a decade later), but thanks to streaming services, I’m not so sure DVDs and blu-rays are capable of a similar recovery. Comic fans are notoriously protective of their physical things. Film has always been marketed towards a wider audience than comics, and now the notion of owning it in physical form has been completely devalued. It’s certainly reached a nadir of disposability in Western culture, maybe worldwide.

Or maybe I’m completely wrong.


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 3:44 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 1:14 pm
Totally recognize this is like completely quaternary to your concern, but Warner Archive doesn't release in stores anywhere, that's what differentiates it from regular Warner.


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 4:09 pm 
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My brother has had me order him Warner Archive titles and then ship them up as the stores in Canada (which do stock them) charge a hefty price. I just assumed WA didn't ship to Canada, though maybe they do but their shipping is ridiculous?

I can relate to jazzo, though, because even at the pinnacle of the DVD format, it really was a pain in the ass buying titles. Not so much a problem in the States. Specialty labels were especially awful because they didn't have decent distribution. I paid $80 (CAD) for Stalker for fuck's sake. Criterion titles were usually $60 at the very least, though it sounds as though that has gotten better. There are still a few places in Ontario that are heavy into physical media but they're few and far between and mostly one off independent places. Of the places I still hit when I go visit there's Steve's TV in Kitchener and Video Plus Books in Stratford. Future Shop was decent but then they closed all their doors literally the same day I arrived for a family visit a few years ago, which pissed me off because Best Buy sucks.


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 4:09 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:02 am
Oh, kiss my ass, Ribs.

Just kidding. Of course something like that plays into the problem, and of course that wouldn't have dawned on me. I will add, however, that they are still orderable from Amazon US and Deep Discount, just not Amazon Canada.


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 7:27 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:52 pm
Location: Canada
jazzo, I'm Canadian too and I feel and share your pain. Very true about absence of sales of Amazon.CA and how buying from B&N sales doesn't provide any benefit. I recently purchased Criterion's Blow-Up from a third party seller for just over 40$ with shipping and felt lucky to get it at that price.

All the local video rental shops around me have closed down as well - because of Netflix no doubt. If, say, I want to participate in an 80s horror film revisit, I'm left with the options of buying them all (which I won't) or pirating (which I don't).


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 8:32 pm 
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Do you not have a library?


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 8:36 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:52 pm
Location: Canada
My local library doesn't have DVDs. The only one that I know of, and has a sizeable selection, is in a major city that isn't close.


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 9:17 pm 
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No interlibrary loan?


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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 9:53 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:10 am
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
knives wrote:
No interlibrary loan?

That's not really a thing up here. Maybe in Toronto, but not in any city I've lived in. And Ottawa's public library DVD selections are pathetic, but we still have one remaining of the three good downtown video stores.


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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 3:34 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2008 12:49 pm
I'll trade you some steelbooks for health care.


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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 3:38 pm 
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Perkins Cobb wrote:
I'll trade you some steelbooks for health care.

That's pretty much my thought of these things, especially right now. There's a dedicated Canadian Deals thread on blu-ray.com, and there's pretty constant thread of people complaining about prices and availability of blu-rays compared to the US market (especially in light of the closing of the aforementioned HMV). Not a lot of big-picture perspective going on there, and some folks seem to almost believe it's a deliberate conspiracy against Canadian blu-ray buyers.


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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 3:56 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2008 12:49 pm
I mean, I'm sure it's cheaper for me to feed the physical media habit than it would be anywhere else in the world, and I'm grateful for that (even though I spend probably 10 times as much as I did five to seven years ago, when I could rent 98% of what I watched from local stores or Netflix). I'm just trying to watch as much as I can before I get a serious illness, because there's no way I'll be able to afford treatment!


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PostPosted: Sun May 28, 2017 9:20 am 
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The BBC Store, their online space allowing you to buy digital copies of their programmes, is closing. This is of little surprise I guess, everything was woefully overpriced (£2.99 for 30 minute shows, selling shows for more than the RRP of a physical copy, etc). Those people who have purchased copies are not going to be allowed to download them and watch them offline using the Beeb's proprietary player, they're just going to be refunded. Far from the worst way to handle things I guess, but my collection from the Store included multiple archive dramas that have never had a DVD release. I can easily watch my backlog before the expiry date of November, but tremendously disappointing nonetheless.


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PostPosted: Sun May 28, 2017 10:33 am 

Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2015 6:14 am
Are you able to download them using third party apps and plug ins?


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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2017 5:00 am 
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This is the least surprising news ever. What a shitty service it was.


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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2017 2:00 pm 
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Location: Aldershot, Hampshire, UK
kidc85 wrote:
The BBC Store, their online space allowing you to buy digital copies of their programmes, is closing. This is of little surprise I guess, everything was woefully overpriced (£2.99 for 30 minute shows, selling shows for more than the RRP of a physical copy, etc). Those people who have purchased copies are not going to be allowed to download them and watch them offline using the Beeb's proprietary player, they're just going to be refunded. Far from the worst way to handle things I guess, but my collection from the Store included multiple archive dramas that have never had a DVD release. I can easily watch my backlog before the expiry date of November, but tremendously disappointing nonetheless.


Even more for me, as a lot of those archive dramas were on the list of "purchase when I get a chance to watch them". And now I can't.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 7:00 am 
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Location: Greenwich Village
SONY will start pressing vinyl. Haven't done that since 1989Read here... Could there be a correlation for the rest of physical media?


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