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Steven M.

1 Level 1 Contributor
  • 4 Reviews
  • 9 Helpful Votes
  • 0 Thank Yous

Experience: Entertainment, Shopping

Member since September 2017

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4 Reviews by Steven

Netflix DVD rental used to be great. Great selection of movies, great customer service, great prices - you get the idea. The decision to split the company into separate parts - one devoted to streaming content and the other to renting out hard copies has not been good for those of us who would rather watch/rent dvds than stream stuff online. There are now a remarkably large number of movies simply UNAVAILABLE if you want to rent the dvd. Many dvds arrive in unplayable condition as well. But the biggest problem with the service now is THROTTLING, which is a deliberate denial/slowdown of service to users who return discs too quickly for NetFlix to make a profit from their accounts. This is a REAL THING, not tin-foil hat conspiracy craziness.

My account was closed for an extended period of time and when I decided to start renting again, I also decided to open a new account. As dvd renters know, the first month for new accounts is free. And what a terrific free month it was! Turnover on rentals was brisk. I'd mail things back the day after receipt. I generally found myself getting TWO deliveries from NetFlix per week. Which STOPPED shortly after the free month ended. Now, dvds I mail back seem to vanish into nowhere for days at a time. Getting them to ship stuff out is like a grudge match now. Look, if sending too many dvds out to folks is all that much of a problem, why don't they just change their rental plans? Charge a set amount PER DISC. I'd be more than happy to pay 2-3 dollars for each dvd I rent if that's what they want. But the way they screw around to try and keep profits up is really annoying.
I've used DVDShrink for a while now and think it it works just fine - if you want to copy an entire dvd (menus and all) or just the main feature, it's terrific. It's ridiculously simple to use. You may encounter a fair number of discs that DVDShrink will not open, but as the software hasn't been updated in a while, that's to be expected. Download other freeware (like BDLot and DVD Decrypter) and you'll find that, using one program or another, you'll be able to copy and back up most anything you want.
Classic Flix used to be a rental-by-mail company that filled a pretty solid niche - they concentrated on older films and also rented a number of manufactured-on-demand dvd's from the likes of Warner/Fox/Universal Archive series. Problem was - they couldn't seem to get dvd's out and in the mail in anything resembling a timely fashion. Either they were the most incompetently run rental business ever or they were just deliberately bad at it so they could charge for their service but not actually DO ANYTHING meriting payment. I go with the latter for a pretty simple reason: on more than one occasion I wound up paying a monthly "unlimited dvd's" fee when I'd only gotten ONE dvd that entire month and when I requested a refund, it was refused.

They're no longer in the rental business and are now a small boutique company issuing dvd's of older films*. I haven't seen reviews of any of their releases, but from my dealings with them as a rental provider, I can't expect much. It looks as if the few titles they've put out are all public domain films.

*I have seen a few of their dvd releases and they're uniformly terrific. They have found the best available prints for all the films I've seen and added plenty of bonus features on some of the discs. Color me surprised - I didn't think they could do anything right.
Swap-A-DVD is a great idea, unfortunately, the way it plays out is not good. Simply put - no matter how cheap and readily available a dvd may be in the world of internet retail, you will NEVER get it from Swap-A-DVD. I say this as someone who sent out TWENTY-FIVE dvd's after joining six months ago. Since then, I've received ONE lousy dvd - a public domain version of Bob Hope's Son of Paleface, which I could have bought on Amazon.com or eBay for 3-4 dollars. Granted, most of the dvd I sent out were not especially rare or expensive, but at least half of my list is made up of things that are readily in print and selling at very low prices online. Swap members simply don't post anything even remotely valuable on the site. If you want to waste a lot of money and time - join up, post a bunch of dvds and then ship 'em out. Just don't expect to get anything in return. Think of it as a purely altruistic activity and you'll be a happy camper. Personally, I'd like my dvd's back. Swap-A-DVD blows.

Steven Has Earned 9 Votes

Steven M.'s review of DVDShrink.org earned a Very Helpful vote

Steven M.'s review of Netflix earned 3 Very Helpful votes

Steven M.'s review of SwapaDVD earned 5 Very Helpful votes

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