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The Star Trek Into Darkness Blu-ray ignites furor over limited bonus features

08.29.2013

Fans who purchase the STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS Blu-ray are going to be making "Khaaaaaan!" faces of their own at the Paramount marketing geniuses who pulled this one. We all have been told of the push by studios away from physical home releases of movies on DVD and Blu-ray in favor of digital downloads. Whether those be online via iTunes or in a format like Ultraviolet, fans have not taken to this model as quickly as anticipated. I, personally, love holding a hard copy of the movie in my hands. Unwrapping a new movie is always like getting a present. Digital just doesn't lend itself to feeling like you truly own something.

In what amounts to not much more than a "f*ck you" to fans of hard copy films, Paramount has limited the special features on the STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS Blu-ray. Sort of. Check out the explanation from The Digital Bits:

It turns out more extras were created for this title. But Paramount’s marketing wizards took those additional extras, split them up and made them all available as retailer exclusives. So for example, the iTunes Extra download does have audio commentary with J.J. Abrams and his team. There are additional featurettes that have been split up as CinemaNow and VUDU digital extras. Still more are only available on exclusive bonus discs at Target and Best Buy. So in the end, fully half of the bonus content created for this title got scattered by the marketing team as a retailer promotions.

I recently purchased EPIC for my kids at Target and chose the version that was designed like a storybook. Sure it was a couple of bucks more, but specials like that or steelbook releases always make it a little nicer. But, I also check to see if there are additional features on these that aren't on the standard release. It never occurred to me that there would be less.

It already sucks to get a movie from Netflix or Redbox with none of the special features included, but now to not be able to buy one version of a Blu-ray to see everything is downright ridiculous. It wasn't even two decades ago that we were all primarily watching VHS tapes and didn't even know what a special feature was unless it was a deluxe edition with a featurette after the credits on the tape. We have gotten used to these features as a standard and most of us scoff when a movie hits stores with nothing more than menus and trailers.

I wouldn't be surprised if Paramount is planning to release a deluxe Blu-ray close to Christmas with everything in a 2-disc package. It stinks, especially for those who shelled out their money to buy the current release of STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS.

Let the backlash begin!

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