New to VUDU: Week of July 31st, 2011

For quite a while now, we’ve provided you with weekly updates here in the blog about titles entering and leaving the Netflix stream. Personally, I prefer VUDU for my rental streaming needs. The company’s 1080p “HDX” files are very close to Blu-ray quality, and are often significantly better than the artifacty crap that Netflix calls “HD.” Going forward, we’re going to offer you a look at what’s coming new to VUDU as well.

The following titles enter the VUDU stream this week. All dates provided refer specifically to rental availability. Check VUDU for sell-through availability, if interested.

  • ‘The Beaver’ (8/5)
  • ‘Camp Hell’ (8/1)
  • ‘Carbon Nation’ (8/1)
  • ‘Exporting Raymond’ (8/2)
  • ‘Gabi on the Roof in July’ (8/1)
  • ‘The Harimaya Bridge’ (8/1)
  • ‘Jane Eyre’ (8/2)
  • ‘The Lamp’ (8/1)
  • ‘Main Street’ (8/6)
  • ‘Soul Surfer’ (8/2)
  • ‘The Striking Truth’ (8/1)
  • ‘Tracker’ (8/1)
  • ‘When Harry Tries to Marry’ (8/1)

I’ll be honest that I’ve never even heard of most of these. Many of them are direct-to-video releases, or indie titles of such low profile that they’ve flown way below the radar. This is a week without any major releases. However, two titles of interest stand out.

The newest adaptation of ‘Jane Eyre‘ from director Cary Fukunaga (‘Sin Nombre’) received some very strong reviews earlier this year, despite the fact that the story has been made into a countless number of movies before. The film stars Mia Wasikowska as Jane, and Michael Fassbender (Magneto from ‘X-Men: First Class’) as the brooding Mr. Rochester.

The Beaver‘ is Jodie Foster’s latest directorial effort, in which Mel Gibson decides that he’s only going to talk to people through a hand puppet. The movie got some pretty mixed reviews and was a box office bomb, even on the indie circuit. However, Gibson’s notoriety and the extremely weird concept give it a high curiosity factor.

Both movies are available for VUDU rental in advance of their official Blu-ray releases, which will hit on August 16th for ‘Jane Eyre’ and August 23rd for ‘The Beaver’. This would be a good opportunity to check them out without having to commit to a purchase.

Be sure to also check for VUDU’s $0.99 Movie of the Day offers, which are announced each day on the company’s Facebook and Twitter pages.


  1. Deaditelord

    While I do agree that VUDU’s HD streams trump Netflix’s HD streams in terms of quality, Vudu unfortunately suffers from the same problem facing video stores and that’s not having a reasonably priced monthly subscription service. Why should I pay $3.99 or $4.99 for one rental (sorry, I don’t count the $.99 rentals since so far those have not been current movies) when $16.00 gives me unlimited streaming and one blu-ray unlimited rentals per month? After just 5 Vudu rentals you’ve already paid more money than Netflix. For someone like me who watches around 10 blu-ray movies a month and uses their streaming service quite a bit (I’ve cut the cord), Vudu just doesn’t make financial sense.

    Now if Vudu were to offer an unlimited monthly streaming service, even if it was slightly more expensive, I’d drop Netflix’s streaming service and stick with their movie only plan. But I rather doubt that’s going to happen.

    • Josh Zyber

      As a home theater enthusiast, my approach has always been to put quality ahead of convenience or price. I’m willing to pay a premium if the quality is worth it, just as I pay a premium for Blu-ray over DVD.

      I’ve never been particularly happy with either the selection or quality of Netflix streaming. For me, and the amount of renting I do (which is less than you), VUDU is my streaming service of choice. I can certainly understand why your priorities may be different, however.

      I also agree that an unlimited monthly plan would be a good business move for VUDU to help them compete with Netflix. I wonder if their licensing agreements with the studios limit what they can do in that regard?

      • Deaditelord

        Probably so. I have a feeling the second VUDU tried to offer an unlimited monthly plan the studios would force VUDU into the same 28 day window policy as Netflix. It’s too bad because I do think VUDU’s HD streams are noticeably better than what you get on Netflix.

        I’m also in total agreement with you when it comes to DVD/Blu-ray and will always pay extra for the blu-ray as I think the quality is worth it. But with streaming, I’m willing to compromise a little since I think of streaming as my cable TV service which, with the exception of HD via an OTA antenna, has always looked ugly on an HDTV. But I get your viewpoint on not wanting to sacrifice the quality of the streams for something cheaper.

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