Monday, October 25, 2010

Missing parts

I just finished watching Repo Men, and have the DVD's bonus screen music playing on my headphones as I type this. (Mother and baby sleeping in the other room.)

I'm doing a little bit of internetting, and I thought, might as well have one of the bonus features on in the background. An unusual step for me, since I rarely watch extras even with films I like, let alone those I don't really care for. Repo Men falls into the latter category.

But I also kind of dig things like fake commercials made in the style of the movie, you know, advertising some shadowy organization that's part of the plot. I'm pretty much describing the exact extra I thought I'd watch on the Repo Men disc, called "The Union Commercials." The Union being that nasty little organization that sends people out to reclaim your vital organs after you've defaulted on your payment for them.

But when I tried to select the link to "The Union Commercials," this is what I got:

"This disc is intended for rental purposes and only includes the feature film. Own it on Blu-ray or DVD to view these bonus features and complete your movie watching experience."

Um, no thanks.

My guess is that this phenomenon is not limited to Repo Men, that there are other DVDs out there with some of their vital organs missing. But I do wonder why you would go to the trouble of making a special version of the DVD, just so you can deny people who rent it. There has to be an extra cost involved, which should outweigh some of the intangible benefit of this denial.

And it's clearly just denial for denial's sake. You're operating on the theory that someone who rents this movie will buy the DVD only because they want to see the extras -- not because of how much they liked the movie. The latter is the only legitimate reason to ever buy a movie, not so you can see its deleted scenes or watch another feature called "Inside the Visual Effects." (Especially since these visual effects were nothing to write home about.)

And now I'm actually wondering if this is the DVD that is given out to all rental outlets, or just Redbox, where I'm watching Repo Men for the bargain price of $1.10, including tax. (Having seen it, I might have gone as high as $1.25, ha ha.) Could this have been a special burn just for Redbox? Is that the price you pay for getting to watch a movie at a fraction of its rental price from Blockbuster? Or maybe they just think you won't have time to watch the extras if you have the DVD for only 24 hours?

It's just as well, seeing as how I'd rather see less, not more, of Repo Men.


Simon said...

I hate that. I like watching deleted scenes, and the guys who release them are such dicks about the whole thing.

Vancetastic said...

Simon, I just realized I forgot to respond to this.

Yeah, I don't really understand the point. And am sorry to hear that it's a relatively widespread phenomenon with rental discs, which I'm only just recognizing now. I get it if the extras come on a separate disc -- it makes sense not to rent that separate disc. But coming up with a new version of the original disc, just for rental? It's too much.