Imagine…you put the kids to bed, pour some wine and watch the movie of
your choice without having to listen to the guy behind you smack his
lips on Sour Patch Kids. The line between TV and PC is becoming blurred
and the newest gadgets and services aim to make each more like the
Recently, I shared a few devices for watching streaming movies at home, perfect for moms who aren’t exactly hitting the theater every weeknight. In streaming movies redux, here are more options that provide you with instant access to movies and TV shows directly to your computer–all without any extra hardware at all.
(Video On Demand) is a site with a big library of educational and
mainstream movies. There is no membership fee–simply purchase
blocks of time and then can let loose to choose whatever you want to
watch, all or even parts of movies. When my kid suddenly needs to get out of bed and pee right in the middle of a movie, it’s nice to have
the option to start and stop as I please.
Besides, if you want to see just
the volleyball scene from Top Gun over and over again, it’s all you.
is the big man on campus when it comes to streaming media. It is
already integrated into most set-top devices, but Netflix also offers a “watch instantly” feature that allows you to stream any TV show or movie
from its massive library directly to your PC. Netflix also recently
announced a distribution agreement with NBC/Universal, so that infamous
‘Saturday Night Live’ skit with Betty White and her ‘muffin’ can be ready and waiting for you when you need a five-minute break from diaper changing and homework wrangling.
is an online content streaming service from NBC, ABC, Fox, and most of
the major broadcasters (sorry CBS fans) and movie studios. A lot of the content is free,
but there is also a Hulu Plus version which hooks you up with premium content for
$9.95/month and is about to support iPhone, iPad, and other mobile devices. So, if you still can’t figure out Lost and need to
re-watch the first couple seasons to confirm your theories about John Locke and the Smoke Monster, you’ll need to upgrade to Plus.
As we all know, Amazon.com goes far beyond books. Amazon Video on Demand
is another service that offers TV shows and movies for rental and
purchase. You can download movies directly to your laptop for instant
viewing, or save them for later to watch if you own it. It’s a perfect way
to keep those little ones entertained when you’re traveling. (Remember,
as cute as your kids are, no one wants to hear them whining on a plane)
Whether you go high-tech and stream content directly , or go the old school way and order DVDs via mail, I say the most
important thing is to take some time for yourself and invest the two
hours to watch a movie every once in a blue moon. Also, don’t forget the