Raise your hand if you still have physical movie collections. I only ask because I think it will become a thing of the past in years to come. A movie collection will become as anachronistic as a Super 8 projector – a VHS tape – a VCR – a laser disc – or a vinyl record… well strike the last one.
As I sit in my office, I am looking at a wall of DVDs and BluRays, mostly DVDs. There are more than 400 titles on the shelf, ranging from classics to current blockbusters – Quiet Man to Avengers. This collection started as VHS tapes back in the day, movies that I watched as a kid, movies I grew up with. When DVDs became the new big media – I hate to admit that this was after I had graduated from college, I started swapping over. I finally replaced all of them, except for those few that might not ever get ported over to anything else but VHS (in this case CHUD II – Bud the CHUD is the one that I am most sad that I don’t have in a digital format.).
This collection is heavily curated. I don’t mean that all of them are winners or Oscar nominees, but I like them and in most cases there is not only a value in the fact that I like the movie but they have a sentimental value to me as well. There are movie memories that I shared with my folks – both movie buffs in their own rights. Some are movies that my older brother and sister introduced me to as I was growing up. Family movie night was a big deal for us. I grew up in the time period before there were DVD players and streaming devices not only in every room in your house but also in your pockets. We rented a VCR and 5 movies for $20 a couple of times a month prior to buying a VCR for ourselves. Again, this was a very big deal, especially to a kid in elementary school.
College was a time to expand my movie horizons. Fell in with a group of movie people that were unlike anyone I had ever encountered. They were watching indie movies (Kevin Smith and Tarantino), they were watching foreign movies (I am still bad with these – want to like them as much as I want to love Coltrane) and they were just really making me look outside the box for new flicks to watch. I bought a lot of used movies while I was in college. I frequented the used bin at any movie store we rented from – yup, brick and mortar movie stores were still en vogue.
Since college, and movies making the move to DVD and now to a purely digital format, I have replaced my VHS tapes with DVDs and now I am probably going to swap most of them over to BluRay. I would like to go digital. I have in some cases where I can get a free digital copy but… I really like having the physical copy. I really like having all the extras. I really want to be able to rip copies of my existing collection and stick them on something digital so that I can stream in my house. I really like the fact that if I am without internet I can still watch a movie.
I have a lot of “wants” in there… Can’t wait to see what the future brings. Curate that movie collection. Whether you want digital or a BluRay collection, it doesn’t matter. Buy the movies you like and like what you buy.