Monday, February 22, 2021

Movie method

Matt Thomas wondered how I get movies for our household. Here’s a more detailed answer than the one I gave in a comment.

I’m the one who usually does the looking. The sources, via Roku: the Criterion Channel, TCM on-demand, and YouTube. With Criterion and TCM, it’s just a matter of seeing what’s available and for how long. YouTube requires greater craftiness. Sometimes a movie will prompt me to search for a director’s name or actor’s name to find other films. I’ll sometimes check a title in the IMDb to look for cast members who might be of interest.

I like to limit YouTube searches to the current month to avoid bringing up the usual suspects. So I’ll search for, say, film noir — why is it always film noir? — and look at what’s been uploaded in February. I’ve learned to ignore links that promise Full Movie with no time listed; they’re just come-ons to get the gullible to visit some other site. I’ve also learned to not ignore links with no movie title; they almost always turn out to be genuine uploads trying to fly under the copyright radar.

I’m enormously grateful for the possibilities that the Criterion Channel and TCM offer, but I love the hunt with YouTube. It reminds me of nosing around used-book stores in search of something worthwhile. For instance: The Suspect (dir. Robert Siodmak, 1944), Lost Boundaries (dir. Alfred L. Werker, 1949), Jazz Dance (dir. Roger Tilton, 1954), The Case Against Brooklyn (dir. Paul Wendkos, 1958).


I forgot about my university’s library, which has a vast DVD collection. But there’s no browsing now, and I try to stay off campus anyway.

comments: 2

Matt Thomas said...

Thanks for this. I bet a lot of people don't even know YouTube has full movies. I mean, I know, and I always forget. Also important to note that the TCM Roku channel requires a cable or satellite subscription. ;-)

Michael Leddy said...

Right — we get TCM on-demand because we have cable. There’s no extra charge though for watching via the Roku. (Not like Netflix.)

Something that surprises me: how few students here take advantage of the library’s DVD collection. Then again, you need an optical drive for that.