The maturity of the DVD market has meant that, inevitably, over the years, plenty of releases have been deleted. Most of the time, that’s that. The disc disappears, nobody notices, we all move on.
Sometimes, that’s part of the plan. Numbered limited editions, scarce boxsets, time limited releases… it’s all part of the game in making a DVD release feel collectable, and thus more valuable. They taunt us with the prospect of us getting rich by selling the film on for a massive profit many years down the line.
However, there’s emerging an unlikely collection of rare and surprisingly valuable DVDs, films that you might never expect to double their retail value. See if you’ve got any of these on your shelf…
Note: prices were checked against eBay/Amazon where appropriate, and were correct at the time of the article going live.
Original release date: October 1999New copy now worth: £199.99
Cliff Richard went all furry in the 1990s, when he headlined a musical take of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights. Said musical was then filmed, and put out in a pretty unspectacular 4:3 framed release back in 1999. Long out of print, the cheapest second hand copy we could find at Amazon UK is now worth ten times the original asking price.
Truly Madly Deeply
Original release date: February 2002New copy now worth: £49.98
Arguably Anthony Minghella’s best film, Truly Madly Deeply stars Alan Rickman’s Jamie as the lost love of Juliet Stevenson’s Nina. Nina’s struggling to get on with her life, and with the minimum of schmaltz, this wonderful film allows two actors to properly explore what happens next. It’s funny, moving, and hardly the beneficiary of a good DVD release. Yet the enduring love for the film has helped balloon the price of a new DVD to a penny shy of £50 at the time of writing…
Original release date: May 2003New copy now worth: $44.95
One of the running jokes of movie website land is to mock up spoof front covers for prestige DVD releases of films that, er, aren’t ever likely to get such a prestige DVD release at any point in their existence. The various designs for the Criterion Collection edition of Good Burger is a case in point. Yet might there be an element of self-fulfilling prophecy here? Long discontinued, a new DVD of Good Burger has, staggeringly, proven to be a decent investment. It’s at almost double its original retail price already…
Original release date: March 2003New copy now worth: £79.21
Vadim Jean’s drama won quiet acclaim on its first release, anchored by a strong central performance from Ian Hart. The film never had a massively broad DVD release when it was issued on the Cinema Club label in the UK back in 2003. But from what we understand was an initial £9.99 selling price, the film’s rarity has made it one of the most unlikely collectable catalogue DVDs out there…
Original release date: March 2002New copy now worth: £34.99
A cracking thriller this, and the first American film to be directed by Kenneth Branagh. We’re going to look at the movie in more detail on the site soon, but it’s a movie worth going into as cold as possible. Not that it’s cheap to get hold of. Deleted from the Paramount DVD catalogue, with no sign of a new edition on the horizon, the film now fetches a pretty premium in the UK, and it’s hardly cheap in the US either. Worth it, though.
Original release date: February 2003New copy now worth: £27.99
Ah, this would have been a good pitch meeting. Christopher Lambert in a thriller about chess? What could have gone wrong?
Turns out, Knight Moves isn’t bad, and is turning into an unlikely collectable. Out of print on both sides of the Atlantic, it’s already accrued nearly 50 per cent in extra value. And given how under the radar the movie seems to fly, that price might just go up for a while yet.Double Dragon
Original release date: May 2001New copy now worth: $64.99
This is a film that’s cheaper to pick up in the UK – where it’s got a budget release – than pretty much anywhere else. And if you happen to be looking for a copy of the second big(!) videogame to movie adaptation ever, then the US is not the place to be. The reason? The Mark Dacascos classic goes for more than twice the original price. And on the subject of videogame movies…
Original release date: August 2005New copy now worth: $46.28
We can’t tell you much about this one, as we’ve not seen it, nor are we likely to be able to anytime soon. We do admire the commitment, on the box blurb, to building up the erotic side of the film, though. It stars Richard Dreyfuss, and this is one of the more recently released DVDs on this list. Already, its price has nearly doubled, too.
Original release date: July 2003New copy now worth: $84.99
Many horror DVDs get their value from special collectable editions, or deliberately limited print runs. In the case of something like Clownhouse, the original DVD release wasn’t even that special. It’s a bog standard MGM catalogue release, of a well-liked 80s horror movie.
Scarcity, then, has driven up the price of the American release (you can get the film for less in other countries), to the point where a new copy is edging in the direction of $100…
A Dangerous Place
Original release date: June 2003New copy now worth: $83.89
Fancy spending the best part of a hundred bucks on a Corey Feldman movie? The little seen martial arts flick, A Dangerous Place, clearly has some novelty value somewhere along the line, as the price has ballooned to around four times its original price. It’s even more if you buy direct from the UK, with the cost going above the £100 mark to get your hands on a copy.
Feel free to add your own finds in the comments, below. The moral of the story, though? Be wary of chucking out that copy of Big Momma’s House 2. It just, er, might make you rich in a decade or so…
See also:105 movie sequels currently in the works;The top 50 best post-end credits scenes;The most memorable action movie moments;Top 50 modern movies made for under $10m each;Top 25 cult film actors;The best 25 horror movies that you’ve never seen;The top 50 foreign language films of the last decade