Redbox Grows Tired Of Being The Dirty Loose Cannon Among Videostore Killers

You can't just slap a tie on Larry the Cable Guy and expect it to matter.

I'm not sure if this is the sort of thing I should be embarrassed to admit or not, but I tend to use the shit out of Redbox. My house only has Netflix Instant, so if something comes out on DVD that I need to see right way, Magic Mike and Moonrise Kingdom to give two very recent examples, I always hit the Box. It's cheap and convenient. Also, I live in a weirdly rural/suburban area, and there must be at least 2,000 Redbox kiosks strewn across my front lawn alone. One's falling from the sky as we speak.

Later this month, Redbox -- teamed with Verizon -- will unleash Redbox Instant, a subscription service that will cost you $8 a month, letting you go one penny out of your way to stick it to Netflix's lowest offered $7.99 price point. You'd think they would have gone for $7.98, but they're Redbox, man.

For that, you get access to an unknown quantity of films to stream in an unknown quality. Also, you get four free physical Redbox rentals. Additionally, you get to look like a yokel who has never heard of Netflix but without missing out on all great services Netflix actually has to offer. Or close, anyway. Instead of having movies delivered directly to your house, YOU CAN GO GET THEM YOURSELF FROM A BIG RED BOX! Only four, though. And only for one night each.

Despite going live in less than a month, there are still a lot of unknown factors regarding which movies studios will give Redbox Instant streaming rights, but it's clear that Redbox Instant won't yet be offering any sweet day of release streams, which is about the only way they could really get a leg up here.

This feels like classic overreaching to me. Redbox has this really good thing going that separates them from everyone else, and yet they want to risk a bunch of money on a venture that makes them look like everyone else. They should be satisfied with their status as the place I go to get Jean Claude Van Damme movies after buying my Jean Claude Van Damme Frozen Pizzas at the Jean Claude Van Damme Grocery-aporium.