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Blu-ray gets another big boost

Dance-flick-poster Paramount Pictures has announced it will release Dance Flick on Sept. 8 in a barebones DVD rental version and an extras-laden Blu-ray. You won't be able to buy a standard DVD version until four to eight weeks later.

This follows a similar move by the Walt Disney Co. to release its upcoming special edition of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs exclusively on Blu-ray on Oct. 6. A standard DVD of Snow White won't be available until Nov. 24, although Disney's family-oriented Blu-rays all include a DVD copy of the film.

While sales and rentals of DVDs are dropping, Blu-ray sales continue to increase, and studios see the new format as an opportunity to revitalize the stagnant home video market.

I don't think a movie as inconsequential as Dance Flick will have any noticeable impact on Blu-ray sales figures. It will be interesting to see what happens when Paramount tries pulling the exclusivity deal on a major catalog title like The Godfather or a hot new release like Star Trek, or if Disney makes Pixar's Up a Blu-ray exclusive for the holiday season.

Seventhseal Although Blu-ray initially sounded like just another gimmick for studios to wring more cash out of their tired catalog titles, the format has proven to be a gift to cinephiles. Once you get used to watching films on Blu-ray, it's hard to go back to DVD. The Criterion Collection's Blu-ray release of The Seventh Seal, for example, is so sharp and vivid, it makes you feel like you're seeing the movie for the first time.


If you want to see what the format is capable of, ask a store salesman to throw on the Blu-ray of The Searchers and get ready for your eyes to pop out of your head.

I've just started the first season of Mad Men on Blu-ray, and the clarity of the image is startling - leagues beyond the quality of high-def cable and satellite TV. The better the image looks, the more captivated you are by what you're watching and the more enjoyment you derive out of it.

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Adrian Ruhi

I agree wholeheartedly about both Seventh Seal and Searchers on Blu-Ray. If you haven't already seen, Barnes and Noble has 50% off all Criterions (including Blu-Ray). "For All Mankind" is stunning in Blu.

Rene Rodriguez

Thanks for the awesome tip, Adrian! I agree, re "For All Mankind." It's a stunner.

I'm gonna pick up "Chungking Express" and "The Last Emperor" from this sale.

Adrian Ruhi

Watched "Chungking" for the first time the other day on Criterion Blu. Very satisfying, small film. The visuals are stunning, and it's a great tale of quarter-life crisis.

Juan

I was reading that Watchmen sold a damn good amount on blu ray. Its interesting to see that the DVD market is down but blu ray is indeed picking up steam. I see that as a very good thing.

Rene Rodriguez

Yeah, Juan, the Watchmen Blu-ray accounted for 36 percent of all sales of the title last week, which is a new record and a surprisingly high number.

I bet you the Star Trek Blu-ray beats it, though.

Leo

I wouldn't really call that a "50% Off Sale of Criterion" as Amazon.com has all those titles at that exact same price as well with faster shipping and better reliable customer service than B&A. But...unless you possess the Membership card, you save $2, but is two dollars that big of saving when paying $25 yearly for their Membership card? Mmmm... I dont think, not unless you shop like a maniac at B&A then you get something out of your membership, which is a good deal, but for those that only buy little often from the store or site, that membership is a ripoff. I went ahead and ordered them through Amazon, I love their service and prices.

Leo

P.S not to mention that B&N charges Tax for online orders, while on the other hand Amazon does not. ;) Amazon FTW

*Typo before, I mean B&N not B&A. Oops.

Adrian Ruhi

Leo, Amazon has the same prices because they are pricematching B&N. Those are not Amazon's "normal" prices for the Criterions.

Soon as the B&N sale ends, Amazon's prices will go back up, too.

Leo

Oh ok. Do they have the same Tax charge?

Leo

Yeah I thought so.....

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