Vinegar Syndrome - New Genre Label

Discussion in 'General' started by MorallySound, Sep 12, 2012.

  1. shape22

    shape22 Well-Known Member

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    And even though this consistently makes me a back of the line person, I support this policy. They should take care of their best customers first. Priority service is a perk, and perks should cost money. I wish all small retailers handled things in this manner.
     
  2. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    Same here, man.

    I gotta find this old ad from a music magazine (I kept it 'cuz there's an interview with my old band where they publicly slag my guitar playing....great bunch of guys, them). It's a drawing of a waitress with a tray of something, shooting a nasty look behind her and says "You'll get your order when it's good and ready!"

    Would make a great meme today, and VS should make it their home page image.
     
  3. delicreep

    delicreep Well-Known Member

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    Plus, VS ships quickly. Even during their massive sales, orders will be done shipping in just over a week, two at the most. The company is nothing if not organized. Their customer service is top-notch, as well.
     
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  4. russweiss

    russweiss Well-Known Member

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    I've been waiting two and half years for a Dorado Jess Franco blu-ray so this is nothing to complain about. :D
     
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  5. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    While we wait for our discs, I wanted to ask these questions of the subscribers:

    How often do you watch movies at home in general?
    What percentage of those movies are VS titles?
    How often do you RE-watch VS titles?
    (Be honest here) If you had RENTED some of those movies or streamed them first, would you still purchase them?
    How many unwatched VS movies do you have?

    (I first posted this over at DVDTalk.com). Don't take this as criticism; I certainly see merits in being a subscriber. Obviously getting stuff immediately, not worrying about out-of-stock, and the big one, not having to research the movies. You just get everything, and watch it when you want. You might find a hidden gem in a movie that didn't interest you by its description and probably wouldn't have bought single.
    But it's still a lot of money, and those questions are the reason I don't subscribe. For me (and again, this is ME, you might feel differently), the perks aren't enough to justify the cost. For one thing, with my life schedule I'm lucky to watch 1-3 movies a week. Since VS releases about 3-4 a month, a large percentage of my movie viewing would be their movies. While I do enjoy their movies, I enjoy other ones too, and I feel that a VS subscription would cut into that. Also, I feel I'd have to rewatch at least some in order to justify the cost. And I don't have the time to watch them once let alone multiple times. Even at half price, a one-watch movie is $16-17 per viewing, and that's not economical in a hobby that's not economical to begin with. Plus, there's the fact that I've gotten a lot of bums from VS. Like, if I'd rented Dominque from Netflix, I'd give it two stars, drop it in the mailbox, and never think about it again. Even ones I like (Snapshot is probably my favorite title so far) have only been spun once.

    And there's the porn, of course. Now, I like porn, and I like VS porn a lot. I love some of the darker themed ones like A Woman's Torment and Memories Within Miss Aggie (looking forward to Climax of Blue Power, thanks you guys who recommended it), Dracula Sucks is an ambitious attempt at combining classic horror with porn, Blue Ice is good, Ribald Tales of Canterbury is actually somewhat faithful to the source material. But over the weekend I watched Oriental Hawaii. It's just 80 minutes of sex scenes filmed in a house in California, with stock footage of Hawaii in between the fucking. Granted, I wasn't expecting Citizen Kane, I bought it 'cuz I'd seen the lead girls in some other movies and they're damn cute, and I got to watch them fuck. I got what I expected. But yeah, it's not really even trying to be a movie. And I think that's the norm with even the porn VS selects. So I like being able to get a movie here and there in this genre, but I sure as shit don't need every release.
     
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  6. zbinks

    zbinks Beset by Creatures of the Deep

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    Honestly, I don't think the future of rental / on-demand / streaming has much of a place for older, more obscure films like Dominique or Snapshot. It doesn't seem to have much of a place for them, now, as it is.
     
  7. CPT HOOK

    CPT HOOK Well-Known Member

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    There's a lot to answer here, and I'm not really sure where to start. I guess a quick one would be the porn titles. You can get a completest subscription that includes the porn titles, or there is a cheaper subscription for horror / exploitation only where you don't get the porn titles (but you still get the arthouse stuff like Decoder, Putney Swope, etc). I have the second subscription, so I didn't get the 10 adult releases for 2019, nor will I get the 8 for 2020. The only adult titles I've received in my time as a subscriber are Liquid Assets (which I sold as new), Memories Within Miss Aggie (which I watched once and sold at a nice profit), and 5 Years 5 Films Volume 3.

    As for my particular viewing habits, I travel a lot so I don't always have access to my collection. When I'm home and I do though, I watch a movie every night, sometimes two. It helps that I don't require a lot of sleep. So if I'm home for an entire month, my monthly VS package doesn't really eat up a lot of that. For a lot of the horror titles, this usually isn't my first encounter with them, so a lot of times if it's a movie I've seen before I don't always watch it right away.

    As for re-watching, I really don't rewatch any movie more than once a year. Usually less frequently than that. I will be doing the annual watches of Christmas Evil and Jack Frost this month, both VS titles. It all depends on the movie. I'm a bit of a completest when it comes to slasher movies, 80s horror, and regional horror in general, so even if I don't watch the movies all the time, I like having them there when I need them. I'm generally happy with most of what I get, although I'm not especially crazy about some of the Euro-horror stuff.

    Another thing to consider with the subscription is that since you automatically get the limited slipcover, they tend to retain their value. So if you get a movie you don't like, you can always sell it. With the slipcovers, it's pretty easy to recoup your $16, in fact you can probably unload it for more than that. Also, a lot of these movies are upgrades for me, so I also have the now obsolete DVD or VHS for a lot of these titles to sell off. That takes a nice dent out of the $16, and in some cases for me it has completely covered the cost.

    Also, Vinegar Syndrome sends you coupons for re-subscribing. For instance, I got $60 off my 2020 subscription for being a 2019 subscriber. So even though it looks like a lot of money (and it definitely stings spending it all at once), it typically works out to being considerably less in the long run. Especially once you factor in how much I would have spent on Vinegar Syndrome releases anyway by picking and choosing.

    It's definitely not for everyone, but for me personally, I love it!

    Amazon Prime does have a lot of obscure titles, including quite a few from the VS catalogue. As with all streaming services though, the titles come and go, so there's no guarantee anything will stay.
     
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  8. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    I agree 100%. I like collecting what I actually LIKE. Over the last several years that VS has been a player I own a sum total of 10 of their blu-rays, only 2 of which were actual blind buys (Count Dracula’s Great Love and Uninvited). As a general rule I don’t plunk down hard earned cash on a movie I’ve never seen before, so I see the subscription route to be really counter economical no matter how much you “save”. I wouldn’t feel any sort of pride about having every single release by a company regardless of merit, I’d feel like a sucker. And I say this about any company, not just VS. I like Criterion and Arrow, too, but I sure don’t need Armageddon or Waterworld on my shelf.
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2019
  9. loutoad23

    loutoad23 Active Member

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    About Shipping: Connecticut did get hit with like 2 feet of snow after black Friday. which I am sure slowed down USPS.
     
  10. MorallySound

    MorallySound Mad Mutilator

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    As a Canadian completionist subscriber (who also has to pay 1.33 times the price with the exchange rate and then a bit more with adding Canadian shipping to the subscriber price) for this coming year, and the past two years, I do have to admit that I do have a stock pile of unwatched VS releases... but it's not too many (13 titles out of the 176 I currently own and kept). I watch a lot of movies at home, probably 95% of my movie watching is at home (averaging 25 to 40 first-time viewings a month), which a good 70% of that being watching movies I've bought on physical media (be it Blu-ray/DVD/VHS). And on average of that I'm watching probably between 2 to 6 VS titles a month which allows me to keep up with the subscriber package and I actually watch, and want to watch, everything they put out, even when a movie I've seen before and didn't like as I want to see if my opinion has changed and sometimes the restoration itself is worth re-watching. So as to re-watching, I tend to only keep the movies I do plan to re-watch or serves a purpose in my collection since I am a collector, but if it's something I don't ever plan to re-watch after the initial VS viewing it goes up for sale. As to renting and/or streaming, as a Canadian I have even more limited options to rent/stream these titles, if at all, seeing as a lot of Prime or streaming VS titles are not licensed for streaming outside of the US and we don't have Netflix rentals in Canada, only streaming... so for titles I haven't seen before, the physical release is the only way I can see it without resorting to illegal downloads. And honestly, streaming does not really support VS, or any cult film distributor so even if I had the option I'd rather purchase the physical item as the profit from those sales goes to support the company so more titles can be licensed, restored, and released. The royalties for steaming are pennies compared to purchasing a DVD or Blu-ray. While sure, streaming does indeed provide additional revenue it's no where near being a solely viable option for the continuation of cult film preservation, which is also why I'm a subscriber - to support the preservation of forgotten to most films/films studios would never touch or re-release, whether I like them or not. And that I'm a collector first and foremost.

    And the biggest factor is physical media allows me to recoup my investment if it's a title I don't want to keep, which I can't do with streaming or renting. Especially since I'm not located in the US it's a lot harder for me to get these titles at an affordable price, and again usually can only see them on physical media, and so the subscriber package allows me to get them for an average of $20 CAD shipped with the website exclusive slipcovers, where as most of these if I bought them individually would cost me $30 for the standard releases to upwards of $50 CAD each with shipping especially if I wanted the limited slipcover versions. And for titles I've sold after, on average I've been able to sell them for 1.5x what they cost me since they retain their value, and if they go OOP I've been able to make 3 to 4x that so being a subscriber really pays for itself. So being a subscriber is not only economical for me personally, but it ensures the continuation of VS and their work.
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2019
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  11. MorallySound

    MorallySound Mad Mutilator

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  12. russweiss

    russweiss Well-Known Member

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    Although I watch a few hundred films per year a good deal of them are theatrically. I find that I am more of a collector than watcher (which some people may not understand). This is my first year subscribing to VS although I came close both of the past two years. I've found that I tend to buy several hundred dollars worth of VS titles over the year and figured I'd spend a bit extra to get all the titles (less the porn). At minimum you can sell titles you don't want. Most for a pretty decent price (I've seen Blood Hook sell for over $100). I was also sent a $25.00 discount code because I purchased the pre Black Friday titles and as Hook mentioned subscribers were given a $60.00 code to resubscribe which is pretty nice.

    As I mentioned I don't watch a whole lot of VS titles but I still really like having them. I probably buy about 300-400 movies a year and only watch a small amount of them. I tend to even buy foreign titles of films that I already own to have different extras and different cover art. I don't have any expensive habits like drinking, smoking, or buying Starbucks everyday but I do like spending money on movies. I have ever since I was 10 years old and picked up my first copy of Famous Monsters back in the 70's.
     
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  13. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    I just wanted to clarify, when I mentioned "renting/streaming", I wasn't suggesting it as an alternative to buying Vinegar Syndrome product; rather I was pointing out that many VS movies are NOT available in that medium, and thus blind buying probably happens more with their movies than most other labels. And if you HAD seen it in some temporary fashion like that, would you still want a copy in your collection?

    Everyone collects differently. Russ admits he collects more than watches. Not my cup of tea, but he ain't using my money to do it, so more power to him. For me (and once again, this is just me), owning a movie is a reflection of my opinion of that movie's quality. I may see a movie in the theater (or see it via Netflix, Shudder, or premium cable) and think either I hate it, I like it but don't feel the need to have a copy on hand in my home 24/7, or love it and do want a copy in my home. VS movies have hit all three of those buttons for me, but because I almost always have to buy them first, the ones in the first two categories are kind of a waste of cash for me.

    I was just curious if anyone else felt the same way. If 9 out of 10 movies hit that last button, then it's probably worth subscribing. I've found it's less than that (one more time, FOR ME), and thus a subscription wouldn't be feasible for me.
     
  14. Mutilated Prey

    Mutilated Prey Soul Stealer

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    Not sure who your weatherman is, but I live 10 minutes North of VS’s shipping in CT, and we didn’t get 2 feet of snow. More like a 1/2 inch at best :D

    NH and VT got like a foot or so depending upon where you are.
     
  15. baggio

    baggio Well-Known Member

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    Myself I have quite a few titles that are sitting my shelf. Haven't had the time to watch them. But for some reason I like having them there. Sorta like what you're saying. I enjoy collecting them. My collection I've almost stopped buying "regular" film releases. Toned down quite a bit. Now I mostly buy stuff from the smaller companies(like VS, Kino, Scorpion, etc...) and the rare old titles that get released on Blu. That, and when certain TV Complete seasons go on sale. I pick them up from time to time. The rest I just go to the theater and watch on Netflix.
     
  16. baggio

    baggio Well-Known Member

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    I'm not a VS subscriber. For me it's just not worth it. There are so many titles(no even talking about the pron) that I would never get. There are tons of VS titles that I've passed on, even during Black Friday sales.

    Now I've never seen the complete math. Would love for someone to take last years Subscription, the horror/exploitation only. And list the complete total number of releases and amount if bought individually, using the prices VS had on release of each said title. Because each title release isn't the same amount as we have seen. Then there's the well you can sell it on ebay or whatever. I just don't have the energy for that. Besides, you can pick up just about any VS title in various stores for even cheaper than VS's own store. (without slips)
     
  17. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    Yeah, I hear ya, man. I do buy "regular" releases, but it's usually from the used record stores I frequent, and they're ridiculously cheap. Just got the Blu of Seven last week for 3 bucks.

    Agree here too. The math makes sense, but reselling on E-bay is a chore that I just don't have the time for.
     
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  18. MorallySound

    MorallySound Mad Mutilator

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    I took the time and compiled that info for ya! Here's 2019's horror/exploitation titles, and VS website prices at time of release vs. subscription prices which I'll do based on a US-based subscriber (2019 subscription was $680 USD, but subscribers were also emailed a $60 off coupon for this year's Black Friday sale because they had 3 less titles come out in the year than what was originally planned - so technically bumping that down to $620 USD, which is what I'll then base the math on). Because the subscriber's get the slipcovers, the math is based on the website sale price with the slips (** denotes LE slipcover version has since gone OOP, so these would now fetch on average 2 to 4 times the website price if re-sold):

    Bloody New Year - $24.99
    Uninvited** - $24.49
    There's Nothing Out There** - $24.49
    Splatter University - $24.49
    Wacko - $24.49
    Party Line - $24.49
    Battle for the Lost Planet/Mutant War** - $24.49
    Dominique - $24.49
    In the Cold of the Night - $24.49
    The Suckling** - $24.49
    Fleshpot on 42nd Street - $24.49
    The Corruption of Chris Miller** - $24.49
    Darkroom** - $24.49
    Grandmother's House - $24.49
    Satan's Slave** - $22.99
    Mountaintop Motel Massacre** - $24.99
    Nightbeast - $24.99
    Lust in the Dust - $24.99
    Putney Swope - $24.99
    The Passing - $24.99
    Night Owl - $24.99
    Taking Tiger Mountain - $24.99
    Play Dead - $24.99
    Hellmaster - $24.99
    Hell Comes to Frogtown - $26.99
    Decoder - $24.99
    Pledge Night - $24.99
    The Vineyard - $24.99
    Beyond Evil - $24.99
    Secta Siniestra - $24.99
    Unmasked Part 25 - $24.99
    Berseker - $24.99
    Beyond the Door III - $24.99
    Amityville: The Cursed Collection - $59.99
    The Angel Collection - $49.99
    Tammy and the T-Rex (UHD) - $34.99
    Spookies** - $27.99 (x 2 to get both slipcovers, which subscribers get both of)
    The Candy Snatchers - $24.99

    Total individual website price: $1,044.11.
    Horror/Exploitation subscribers saved $424.11.

    Completionist subscribers got 10 additional titles for only $100 more (so $720 with the BF coupon applied):

    Climax of Blue Power - $22.99
    Tinseltown - $22.99
    Skin Flicks** - $24.49
    The Pink Ladies - $24.99
    Mascara - $24.99
    9 Lives of a Wet Pussy - $24.99
    Let My Puppets Come - $24.99
    Justine - $24.99
    Hard Soap/Disco Lady - $24.99

    Total individual website price: $1,264.52.
    Completionist subscribers saved $544.52.

    For completionist, if you were to factor in the monthly package discount if you were to order that way instead ($9.96 off each month BUT there's no May package or November package because of the Halfway and BF sales, and December has only 2 releases so it's half, so we'd times that by 9.5 - $9.96 x 9.5 = $94.62), total individual website price is $1,169.90, so you're still saving $449.90.

    I've personally been able to sell anything I didn't want to keep for around $18.75 USD each minimum, some OOP titles even upwards of $60+, so based on that minimum if a subscriber were hypothetically wanting to sell off the complete 2019 Horror/Exploitation titles at that price, you'd make $825 which is still $205 profit based on the subscriber price.
     
  19. baggio

    baggio Well-Known Member

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    Wow. Thank you so much. I appreciate the time you took to do that. I can see the value(if you wanted to keep everything) And then the value if sold off some titles.

    So looking at that list I personally bought around 16 out of those 38 releases.(Horror/Exploitation) Only a handful at full price. Like the Black Friday Flash Presale for example. The rest I picked up on sale way below the initial release price. So that's like 20 plus titles I would be selling on Ebay.
     
  20. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    The only issue I have with your math, MS, is that you're taking the savings off the standard web price. I buy from VS twice a year; Black Friday and Halfway to Black Friday.

    If you take $17.99 as the usual price for VS movies (some go down to $16.49 on BF, but we'll stick with the higher price), and I bought 10 movies at each of those sales, it still only comes out to $368/year. That's why I asked my questions; I can still be a huge VS supporter and have lots of movies from them even without being a subscriber. A subscription would just require a greater effort from me both time-wise and financially.
     

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