First, there were the locally owned and operated Mom and Pop video-rental stores. Then, corporate behemoths Blockbuster and Hollywood Video came out of the sky, struck down those shops and became kings of the movie-rental industry. It was a long, unchallenged reign, but they eventually faced a competitor: a little company called Netflix that offered DVD rentals through the mail. "What foolhardiness is this?" Blockbuster and Hollywood cried, unaware that less than a decade later, one of them would be dead and the other mortally wounded.

The point of this ancient parable is that it's difficult to stay on top forever. If you do something right, someone is bound to replicate your methods, possibly even improve on them, and then attempt to viciously dethrone you. Netflix, with its powerful Instant Watch, may be the current leader of the Rental Empire, but according to the L.A. Times, that vicious little neighboring city-state, Redbox, is looking to confront them directly with an online movie-streaming service of its own.

Ladies and gentlemen, prepare for war.
categories Movies, Cinematical