Ever since I was a little kid I’ve been a film collector, I was lucky enough to have a bedroom stacked full of VHS (sorry Betamax), little pieces of plastic filled with hours upon hours of entertainment. I had everything from official releases to films taped off TV and everything else, it was a fun time. Then DVD came into my life and over time my collection of tapes were replaced with these shiny discs, I dread to think how much money I spent replacing them all (although I did keep a few VHS).
Now I’ve always prided myself on my film collection, it’s the centre of my home and I always have a smile on my face when I see it. I love spending time putting it in order and adding to it, it’s part of who I am and I even have fond memories of some of the purchases or ones what were given as gifts. When 3D and Blu-Ray hit I decided after the many years spent recouping my losses with my VHS collection and the amount of money I’d spent on my DVD collection that I’d finally had enough and would never move on from it, unless I was forced to.
And that’s what scares me, what is around the corner? What is going to come after Blu-Ray and 3D? What if DVD becomes obsolete just like VHS did? It’s sad to think but I see physical releases becoming a thing of the past. With sites such as Netflix and the like it seems that streaming is the way the business is heading, from a business point of view I can understand. There’s not much money to be made in physical releases anymore, plus there isn’t too much of a demand. Even cinemas have trouble getting customers through the doors these days, despite the giant screens and immense sound systems you just can’t beat watching a film in the comfort of your own home.
Of-course this isn’t helped by illegal downloading and you only need to type online streaming into Google and you’ll find hundreds and hundreds of sites where you can watch films for free. Let me put it this way, I’m still a person who still buys cd’s, I can’t stand stuff like iTunes etc, I like to be able to hold something I’ve bought and look at the artwork and the little details.
Now, you can’t stop technology advancing but I don’t want my movie collection to be on a hard-drive or a website, but it definitely seems to be the way the business it’s going. I can certainly see the attraction of it, businesses will save millions in manufacturing, packaging and shipping and consumers will have everything at the touch of a button.
It will have a drastic effect on many businesses that rely on the current format but time moves on and so does technology, we’ve seen it all happen before. In my opinion Blu-Ray is going to be the last mass-market physical format for the purchase and consumption of movies. It’s just such a shame, especially for Horror movie fans like me who like to collect, I don’t see any ‘special editions/limited editions’ being released in a digital format.
Enjoy your days of the psychical format and human interaction buying whilst you can because sadly it’s days are definitely numbered.