Netflix to shutter DVD rentals in September

Originally published at: Netflix to shutter DVD rentals in September | Boing Boing


Ah, fuck - this is how I watch movies. Trying to figure out which service - if any - actually has a specific movie is impossible (much less then subscribing to watch a single film), and Netflix killed all the video rental stores. I wonder if they’ll come back… I suspect not.


Yeah - I have a much more expensive plan to get 3 dvd’s at once - I’ve had it through thick and thin - though all the ‘9.99’ crazy stuff and here I am a schmuck paying almost 30 bucks a month to keep the disc’s coming.

Ah well - I only stream 1-2 shows from Netflix a year at this point - talked with the wife about this and most likely we’ll go to no sub - with a once or twice a year binge like many others do.

I wonder how many of the over 1 million people who still use this service will do the same - seems like a ton of money to leave on the table.


Check out your local libraries, seriously. Mine has almost every movie on DVD or blu-ray that’s been released recently.


An avid Netflix-by-mailer since 2002, Netflix was the only way to get obscure content back in the day, their library was obscenely deep. Sadly, nowadays I’m lucky if more than two new releases a month from my watchlist get carried by them. If they didn’t fold, I was close to leaving anyway. Alas, having 5-out-at-a-time once, a constant pile of circulating red envelopes on my coffee table for under $20/month with 48hr turnarounds, was what made me the cinema fan I am today.


Kenan Thompson Reaction GIF by Saturday Night Live


Also, what @lion said about libraries…


I am quite certain that the USPS was rarely or never the problem. Evidently someone out there was using the discs to test their sandpaper and/or to dance on them, and then Netflix (at least in this area) never checked the returned merchandise for scuffs, scratches etc. before sending them along to the next chump.

I haven’t been a subscriber in almost 8 years but, at that time, it seemed like there was much more still on disc than they were offering online (again assuming one received a playable disc).

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Just Watch is your friend. It’s my go-to for checking where a movie is.


Yeah, the streaming very much snuck in on the back of the DVD service for me, too - streaming only became more important in recent years as they’ve been throttling back on the DVD selection. Losing customers was rather inevitable and self-inflicted, given what they’ve been doing.

Ah yeah - I used to get a ton of stuff from the local library, but fell out of the habit as Netflix was easier, so I’ve not paid much attention to that in a while. I suspect returning to the library will fulfill my needs.

Interesting that the preview there had more information than their actual page at this point…

I’ve actually noticed an (extremely small, low-rent) video rental place not too far from home, though I suspect the selection is nothing I’d watch (and likely in Spanish, and quite possibly VHS tapes…). So apparently they didn’t disappear completely.

But yeah, a return to the library is in order.


Redbox is still around, and arguably as much of what killed movie rental stores as netflix. There is probably a kiosk in a grocery store or pharmacy near you.

Amazon, apple, and google streaming services have streaming rentals for a few dollars with no subscription needed. Unlike the subscription services they all have basically everything except the newest releases so you can just use the service that has the least sucky user interface on your chosen viewing device. I don’t like to “buy” from them since they can just disappear if the service gets shutdown, but if you only want to watch it once, it’s OK. One downside is that the rental time is short, like 48 hours, if you have trouble watching a movie in one sitting, it may not be as convenient.

Of course as Lion points out, your local library probably has a lot of movies to rent in DVD format, and free.


So do you get to keep whatever you have checked out when they close up shop?

Asking for a friend.


As the article points out… you can get stuff they don’t have on streaming.

Streaming’s big con is the content. As in you don’t control it. “look what’s going away on Netflix this month” doesn’t happen with physical media.


I too have been a Netflix DVD subscriber for two decades.

This looks like a promising replacement:
Although 3D has died out, they offer 2D blu-rays and 4K blu-rays. Their selection is not as big as Netflix; about half the titles I checked are available.

Locally the video stores were long gone before I saw my first Redbox. (Though, oddly, I haven’t seen one in a few years.)

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Well, hell.

This truly is the end of an era. I’m one of the diehards holding on to a disc sub, and I am not happy about this. I have various streaming services; but nothing beats the quality of the spinning disc. Disc audio is particularly good:

It’s also nice to have access to the extras (behind the scenes, bloopers, etc) for flicks I really like.

Not to mention, the loss of the monstrous catalogue is just terrible. It has gotten smaller in recent years; but at its height, it featured over 100k titles. Streaming never came close.

So long, red envelope. You will be missed.


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