Friday, August 30, 2013

Do Not Buy Star Trek Into Darkness

As a life long Star Trek fan, I want to support the franchise. However, sometimes that can't hold. With the upcoming release of Star Trek Into Darkness on Blu-ray, I cannot recommend buying it. Not because of the quality of the movie (lacking but a different subject) but because of Paramount choosing to provides its best extra features as exclusives. Over half of them in fact. Now the concept of exclusives is not new but until now the exclusives where either about the packaging, an extra item or a second rate extra feature. Now that has changed to special covers (6 at last count), special collectibles (a phaser or Hot Wheels USS Vengeance), and breaking up their best extra features as exclusives. By purchasing the movie, you are encouraging bad behavior and guaranteeing they continue this horrible practice. Even worse, you will encourage the other studios to engage in the same behavior.

If you want to listen to the JJ Abrams commentary on the movie, that is an iTunes digital version. If you want to see the set designs and alien design, that is a Best Buy exclusive. Target also has 30 minutes of unknown exclusive content. Oh did I mention that VUDU and CinemaNow have other exclusive features too. According to The Digital Bits, more than 100 minutes of extra features will not be available to you or 3 hours if add in the JJ Abrams commentary. In short, if you want to get the "full" home video experience you have to buy the movie at least five times. If you want to own all the covers, you have to buy it six times. If you want all the exclusive collectibles then that is another two purchases. Even worse is the average consumer isn't going to know they have literally 8+ different options to choose from to try and maximize their dollars and so no matter what will likely be disappointed in their choice because they didn't know a choice existed.

At least before, the content on the discs were the same, you were only making a choice on cover design or paying a little extra for a collectible. The choice was a little easy. Now you are missing more than a little bit. You are missing more than half of the special features created for the movie. Even if you don't care about special features you should care when a studio is taking away things that make your dollars worthwhile even if later you choose to not take advantage of it. For the die-hard fans its even worse as Paramount is blatantly trying to force you to buy the same movie more than once. They are willfully trying to rip you off and that should anger you. Its crap like this on why people turn to pirating or just don't bother to buy discs anymore. As if to further this practice of Paramount shooting itself in the foot regarding Blu-ray sales, iTunes has Star Trek and Star Trek Into Darkness double feature set (incl. Abrams commentary) for $25, essentially the same cost it would be buy the movie separately.

Now Paramount has every right to be con artists. However, you as the buyer have a right to not put up with the behavior. When you allow companies to get away with bad behavior by buying their stuff anyway, you are the reason when the bad becomes the norm. If STID has strong Blu-ray sales despite trying to rip everyone off, Paramount will do it on future movies and other studios will take up the practice. So while you may not care about Into Darkness special features, what about some future movie release? Think long term. Speak with your wallet. Do not buy Star Trek Into Darkness in any form.

If my argument seem incoherent, then read Digital Bits commentary as they explain it better. The end result is the same - Paramount is treating their customers like fool and that should not be tolerated.


  1. if everyone buys from the same place it would hurt all the other sales and only buy the dvd an not the blueray since dvds lately don't have any extra features plus there always cheaper then the blueray