The Avengers, DVD vs Blu-Ray, and Lost Faith In Humanity

Ok, so this has not much to do with anything.

Last night I was browsing on Amazon.com, because that’s window-shopping for lazy folks. Anyway, I came across the product page for The Avengers movie. (It’s not released yet, but people can pre-order.) I was a bit surprised when I saw a number of 1-star reviews for what I thought was a pretty good movie (I saw it in theaters twice) so I checked them out.

The prevalent gripe seems to be that the DVD version of the film does not have all of the same special features that the Blu-ray version has. And for this, and this alone, some people gave the movie a 1-star rating.

That is just ridiculous.

It would have been one thing if people gave poor reviews if they saw some major flaw with the film, or if there was an error with the disk (the movie hasn’t had private release yet, so they wouldn’t know if it did.) But for special features? Really? Special features have nothing to do with the quality of the movie, and they certainly aren’t grounds for a 1-star review. (Back in the stone age when we all still watched movies on VHS, they didn’t really even have extras.)

Worse, a few people even cited the fact that they don’t have Blu-ray players and shouldn’t be “punished” for not buying them. Another person, one who evidently had some sense, commented humorously pointed out that the movie wasn’t available on VHS at all and joked that he shouldn’t be “punished” for having a VCR (internet high-five for that guy.) Come on guys, Blu-ray has been out for years. DVD will soon be phased out just like VHS was, and you won’t be able to buy DVDs at all anymore. You can buy a used (or even new) Blu-ray player for relatively cheap these days. Get with the times or quit complaining.

But why doesn’t the DVD have all of the extras the Blu-ray has? Is it because companies want to punish people for having DVD players? Is it a clever scheme to make more money? No. I hate to burst everyone’s bubble, but there is no evil conspiracy at play here and “the man” is not out to get you (this time.)

The answer is simple: Space.

A DVD has 4.7gb of space on it if single-layer disk, and 8.5 if duel-layer. At most, a duel-layer DVD can hold about 3 hours of SD video. Contrast this to a Blu-ray, which has 25gb of space in single-layer, and 50gb in duel-layer, and can about 23 hours of SD video and up to 8.5 hours of HD (depending on the method of encoding) in duel-layer. See the difference? You’re comparing a closet to a mansion here and wonder why you can’t fit the same volume of furniture.

Now, The Avengers has a runtime of almost two and a half hours. That would take up almost all of a DVD’s space that is available to hold video. There simply is not room for extras like there is on a Blu-ray. To hold any considerable amount of extras, enough to really miss, there would have to be a second DVD just for the bonus material. And, what do you know, there actually is a 2-disk DVD addition available (it’s even right on the same page where the complains are, all one needs to do is select it from the drop-down menu!) rendering the “no extras on DVD” moaning completely… well, normally I’d say “retarded” right here, but I’m told that’s a bad ablest habit (and it is.) I rate those reviewers 1-star. Sometimes, I wish I could slap people though a computer screen.

I think this is a problem when just anyone can review anything. Some of those reviews are going to be stupid.  However, they aren’t as stupid as failing to see The Avengers. Even if you’re not into comics or superheros, GO SEE IT!

… What was this blog supposed to be about again?

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Posted on 2012/08/30, in Random Things. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Anthony Damiani

    The movie only clocks in at 2G compressed on the Digital features disc; they used extra space to include an extra file format.
    I purchased the collection because I wanted to see the bonus material; that’s the value-added to me over waiting for Netflix or HBO, Redbox or any of the other distribution channels I normally watch movies over.

    Their decision to package it only on one of the formats is regrettable, and merits a downgrade.

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