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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Movies for Less!


During this season of award shows I'd like to review cheaper ways to see movies. Those who want to know March 2nd, 2014 is the Oscars. You can see it live on ABC 7 e/ 4 p.  

   I am someone that loves the Oscars and the Golden Globes. I also love to be able to see the movies before the award season is over. Sometimes, like in instance of "Precious," I was not really interested in seeing the movie before I saw the award show clips. At the time I was working at BPH and I worked with a lot of girls who were like Precious. The Oscars normally awards nominations and the Oscar itself to movies that push the boundaries. They like to see character go through a metamorphous and they like to see a character go through real struggles. So these movies sometimes are really hard to watch. 

  "Precious" was not an easy movie for me but it was done right. When you work in hospitals you need to arrive at the hospital with your life problems and you put them away for your shift. In a hospital, especially one like BPH in inner cities, you see a lot of horrible things like rape, incest, death, and miscarriages. You also get to see beautiful things like babies being born healthy, people recovering from horrible illness, women who thought they were not strong enough pushing out a newborn, the look on a father's face when he hold's his first born child and proud families taking pictures of newborn babies. But because of HIPPA you cannot discuss these things with anyone outside of the hospital and only so that other patients etc cannot hear.  You cannot carry all these horrible things with you so you need to let them live at the hospital. So at the end of your shift you can pick up your own life's issues and you need to leave the issues of the Hospital at the hospital. I did  not want to watch "Precious" after a long week at the hospitals because I wanted to keep those painful situations at the hospital.

  It was the Oscars that made me rethink seeing the movie that I at first said not going to see it.I saw how amazing Mo'Nique was in the clips and I had to see it! I also now adore Gabourey Sidibe. So instantly after I was moved by Mo'Nique I added the movie to my Netflix Queue. As soon as that movie was available I arranged in to be in the top position in my Netflix queue. When it was available I had it arrive at my mailbox which is why I love Netflix. I highly recommend renting the movie "Precious" but to see it with someone so you can discuss afterward and with tons of kleenex!

  Netflix is an expense that I cannot live without! I prepay/buy a gift certificates for myself so I can make sure that it is already budgeted/paid for. But it is not as easy as it once was because I still like to get DVDs and Netflix split the way to get your films. I still get DVDs which I know is old fashion but that is because all new movies releases come out on DVDs first. When I first joined it use to be arranged that for your monthly price you got DVDs and free streaming. Now I have can only purchase one gift certificate for $95.98 plus tax which lasts me only 3-4 months. It really is a pain in the butt! So every 3-4 months I have to purchase another gift certificate! They don't allow you to purchase certificates  for streaming and for DVDs just for streaming! That is rather frustrating! So I pay $7.99 for the streaming and $15.99 for the three DVDs at once. It sure beats though the old school Blockbuster store ways of charging you $6.00 to see one movie that had to be returned the next day! I still think Netflix is a better deal than Red box. I think Red box is only good if you don't like movies and maybe pick up one DVD or two a month. You will have to do the estimate to see if it works out for yourself. You could also share an account with another family member and they can use your account to stream movies. I share mine with my brother Lindsay and I share his Hulu account. This helps cut down on all the costs of these awesome subscriptions!

  I also get some of my movies from Amazon Prime as I am a member but most of those are not new release that are free. But you can purchase/rent movies. For $79 I get free two day shipping from Amazon, one free book a month, and access to Amazon's free movies/TV shows. I also get discounts on other items. But it is not still the best way to see movies that are still in the theater. However if you cannot wait you can rent or buy a movie from Amazon prime if it is available. It can then be watch instantly on your kindle, Ipad and through a device on your TV!

  I have Amazon prime and a kindle along with other instant streaming items. It made sense to get a device that allowed me to upgrade my 2009 TV and allow me to view these channels. I have Amazon prime, Hulu (through my brother), Netflix and so I went with the Roku three. I had a $50 Amazon gift certificate and I only paid $67.00 for the Roku 3, a protection plan, extra HDMI cords, and for the Roku mounting kit. The Roku was only $89.00 when I purchased it. But because of the Super Bowl coming up I imagine that is why the price has gone up $10.00. Why I chose this over the $35 google chrome was that it was easier to download the channels and the google chrome did not support Amazon Prime. Also unlike the other versions of the Roku it supports 1080 p instead of  just 780 and it is can support HD. Also it was easier to download channels than the other platforms. 

  Also very interesting is that for the HBO go app that you love on your kindle and Ipad can also stream on your TV now through the Roku 3. Only through HBO go can you stream ALL of the seasons of a series which is a feature that is not even available on demand through your TV. I have gotten into Games of Thrones through this way! I did not get HBO until last year. Here is another way to save on movies. I noticed last year that I was paying way too much for my cable and new members were getting all of the premium channels for free and for only $89.99 a month. I was paying twice that for standard cable! So I called up my cable company and I got all the premium channels. I did not get it for $89.99 (that is also plus taxes and fees) but I pay way less than I was before. For those of you who are broke or who are smart if your friend/family has HBO go you can enter their information and get HBO for free. But since I already have HBO it is already free for me. 

  So far I am beyond happy with my Roku 3 and my husband loves it as well! This way we do not have to upgrade our 2008 blue ray player and we still were able to download his YouTube so he is happy! Plus it has this nice feature where it has ear phones for the ear phone jack. When he wakes up early or I am watching TV late at night I do not have to keep him up and I can hear my programs. 

  For those movies that are still in the theater and you really want to see I recommend getting the Entertainment Book which has coupons for movies and also you have access to a website that sells discounted tickets. Unfortunately they use to include free or discounted movies with free drinks/popcorn for Bow tie Cinemas but not anymore. None of the movie theaters in the book are local enough for me. So because those movie tickets are able to be used all around the states I often send them to my family. I can walk to two of the Bow tie Cinemas so it makes sense to buy tickets for those. For a yearly subscription it is $35 but it has so many other coupons that it basically pays for itself! Also through out the year you can purchase them for as cheap as $19.99. It also has coupons for travel and this plus eBates really helps your money stretch! I just recommend the Entertainment Coupon book because you get your money's worth if you like to go out, travel, and shop. 

 The tickets for Bow Tie Cinemas through Entertainments associates are $7.50 but with shipping/handling and taxes the price of the tickets come to $8.55 a ticket. It could be less if you do not have your tickets insured but if the tickets get lost in the mail you are out of luck! It is only $6 or so dollars more for shipping insurance but it is worth the extra costs. When you purchase these tickets online you need to buy at least 10 tickets . Night show tickets at Bow Tie Cinemas cost $11.00 a ticket so it saves you $2.45 a ticket and for the matinee it saves you $0.45 which adds up. If you want to see a 3-D movie the savings really helps although you have to pay the $3 upgrade fee for 3-D. The tickets were easy to purchase and within a week I had the tickets in my mail box. There are also other movie companies with even better deals but since I live in Fairfield County the tickets are steep! 

  Jonathan and I also like to go to Bow tie Cinema on Tuesday nights which is $6 all day price. So we can watch a movie at night for $6 when a matinee showing for an adult (non 3-D) is $9.50. We get the discount because we belong to the Criterion club where we also earn points which can be used for movies or for food at the movies. It is free to join and we have already easily gotten free movies. I do not use the movie tickets I purchase online when I go on Tuesday nights because that would mean I over paid by $2.55.

  I use to also belong in Massachusetts to the AMC club card as well and I earned a lot of points for free movies/popcorn as well. I don't remember if they have discounted movie nights.Through my work I got discounted tickets for AMC. I was not near any of the Clear Channel movie theaters but for all optimum cable members they had  free movie nights on Tuesdays. Since April 2013 after Bow Tie Cinemas bought them out they no longer have free movie nights.

  But this is a lesson always ask how you can get discounts at your favorite movie theater! Ask local movie theaters if there are any discounted passes or movie tickets that you can buy. Ask if there are any programs or if a donation can cause discounted passes. There was a local artsy theater I went to in Massachusetts where they had kind of expensive tickets. If you went there often and wanted to be a paying member then they discounted the tickets and made it worth the price. If you are a student in a student town always use your pass or as if they discount to students. That is the reason you went to college, right? To get free stuff and to have fun. I continued to use my student pass for about three years after until it got obvious I was not a student.

 Another way to get free movies and free new releases is going to the library. If you cannot get Netflix then use the poor man's Netflix. There are late fees and I you have to be aggressive to get on the short part of the list to see new movies. But those on a budget who love movies should use the resources of the library. I get free library books onto my kindle by using my library which helps make my amazon prime price last longer. Not all books are available for the kindle at the library but it does not hurt to check. Or if it is not available you can always try to the old fashion actual book for free as well! I highly believe those on a budget should use the library because not a lot of people use that resources. Often you can also request books and movies to be available if you cannot find them a the library or perhaps inter-library loan the item. But patience is the key to this and you have to have time to pick up items and to drop them off.