The Blockbuster stores of old may have disappeared from our high streets, but renting is still alive and well when it comes to using the internet to watch movies in the comfort of your own home.
But whereas renting a movie previously required you to trudge out to the local town centre to search desperately through the meagre collection of films on offer, modern renting is often just a variation on streaming movies online where you’ll lose access to a movie after a pre-defined period of time.
Modern renting might be more convenient, and offer more choice, than heading to the shops to get a physical disc (or even, gasp, a video cassette), but in our opinion buying a movie still has its benefits.
Enjoying a movie again and again
The most obvious benefit of buying a movie rather than renting it is being able to watch it again and again at your leisure. Thanks to the wonders of digital distribution, you can also watch a film on whatever device you choose.
The first time you watch a musical such as ‘Sing’ you’ll likely not even register most of the song’s lyrics, but on repeat viewings you’ll notice all sorts of little jokes and quips within its musical numbers that combine to really add to your enjoyment of the movie.
There’s no rush
Before you even get to the point of doing repeat viewings, there’s the matter of just finding time to watch a movie in the first place.
Life, as it turns out, often does a really good job of getting in the way of being able to find a couple of spare hours to sit back and relax with a movie.
This is annoying in itself, but can prove disastrous when you’ve paid to rent, rather than buy, a movie, since most services will only give you a certain amount of time to do so. Once that amount of time has expired, your film disappears, whether or not you’ve had the opportunity to enjoy it or not.
Once you’ve bought it, it’s yours and you can wait for the perfect, distraction-free, evening to enjoy a movie as rich and as entertaining as Sing, or perhaps you could download it to your phone to save it for a long train journey.
Rediscovering forgotten favourites
This is more of a long term benefit, but buying rather than renting your movies means that over time you’ll have the chance to build up an actual library of movies, each of them with a specific memory attached of the first time you watched them.
While a video streaming service like Amazon Prime or Netflix might present you with a massive catalogue to dip into you won’t have heard of most of the movies on offer, let alone have any memories attached to them.
Contrast that with your own film catalogue where scrolling through the digital titles you own you’ll have a memory of the first time you watched each one, as well as the people you enjoyed them with.
A digital film collection is more than a catalogue of films to watch on demand, it’s a reminder of the experience each of them has brought you.
Going digital, but not necessarily rental
Whether you’re downloading or streaming movies, try opting to buy rather than rent.
You’ll be able to enjoy your favourite movies over and over again, you can avoid rushing to watch them before your rental expires, and over time you’ll build up a collection you can truly be proud of.
So whether it’s the latest big-budget, fun animated movie like Sing, stick to buying if you want the premium movie-watching experience.