Some Thoughts On Hulu

I don’t know how well it’ll compete with Netflix’s streaming services (though in light of the latter’s recent rate-hike, maybe we’ll be able to see), but I’ve been spending a fair amount of time lately on Hulu. Their basic non-fee movie selections aren’t exactly the widest, but they do offer a few surprises, like Wes Craven’s DEADLY BLESSING, several Troma offerings including the original TOXIC AVENGER and POULTRYGEIST, Andy Milligan’s BLOODTHIRSTY BUTCHERS and TORTURE DUNGEON, and BLOODSUCKING FREAKS. For horror fans on a budget it’s worth the hunt.

My only real complaint are the ads, which is understandable considering the licensing fees involved (not to mention an encouragement to sign up for a paid subscription to Hulu Plus), but the effect they can have on the viewing experience. The interruptions themselves are a mild irritant–they’re relatively brief, lasting maybe 45 to 60 seconds, though they’re frequent, popping up every ten minutes or so with little mind given to the ebb and flow of the movie’s rhythm. Which, really, isn’t that big a deal (come on, it’s free, and as a business model probably not long for the world).

It’s simply odd watching some of these films, many of which haven’t been seen outside of the glory days of VHS or occasional pay-cable broadcast, with commercials. Seeing BLOODSUCKING FREAKS with periodic breaks for yogurt and cell phone ads can make for a somewhat surreal experience.

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