still not on DVD … but cable’s got ’em

We don’t have cable TV. It’s expensive, especially when you add in the TiVo or the DVR or whatever you crazy kids are using these days to catch the shows later when you’re not home for them. We’re also a little bit afraid that if we get cable, we’ll end up vegging in front of the TV all day long, wearing out the buttons of the remote.
Usually when something really good is showing on cable that I can’t live without, I send out a general begging email to a bunch of friends and someone records it for me. I try not to abuse this goodwill.
It’s going to be difficult this month, though, because Turner Classic Movies is showing a lot of movies that aren’t available on DVD (at least not in the US/Region 1, anyway) as part of their Summer Under the Stars lineup. I wouldn’t have known, because of the no-cable thing, but I found the info on Out of Focus.
I couldn’t look up every single movie to see its availability on DVD, but I did look up a bunch that I thought were interesting. The following list may be heavy on Katharine Hepburn movies and Thirties comedies, but it’s a sample of some good movies you might want to catch on TCM. Or persuade other people to record for you. Check the TCM site for times, etc. I wish I had time to include delightful descriptions of these movies, but that’s what the Web is for.
(Note to friends: the only one I will probably beseech you to record is Theodora Gone Wild. Well, one of the very few, I promise. Well, maybe we should call the cable company.)

  • Ride the High Country: August 3
  • Sylvia Scarlett: August 5
  • Dragon Seed: August 5
  • Christopher Strong: August 5
  • 3 Godfathers: August 6
  • Major and the Minor: August 9
  • She Done Him Wrong: August 13
  • A ton of Astaire-Rogers films: August 15 (some will be released on DVD Aug. 16)
  • Theodora Goes Wild: August 18
  • Dance, Girl, Dance: August 21
  • Private Lives (1931): August 25
  • Executive Suite (1954): August 28
  • The Night of the Iguana (1964): August 30

4 thoughts on “still not on DVD … but cable’s got ’em”

  1. TCM has been a wonderful resource for me. I love the movies they play, and my friendship with you has given me a larger appreciation for this type of movie. I never watch one when I don’t think of you.
    I understand why you don’t have cable (it’s a huge money and time suck) but with TCM (and to a lesser extent, American Movie Classics) I can’t believe it. I also have the IFC and Sundance channels for tons of independent films… but I have to be judicious… I can’t just watch all the time!

  2. Tim, I think if I were getting paid to write about movies, that would justify my having cable and maybe even the TiVo. Even if the writing didn’t cover costs, it would be justification in my mind (and also possibly a legit business expense).

  3. I assume you’ve looked at satellite? In our area D-TV (your comments form won’t let me mention the company name, did you know that?) costs about half as much as cable, and it includes the Tivo service. We pay $35/month for satellite and Tivo; I think we had to sign up for two years to get that deal. The equipment was $100 but that was Tivo and a triple satellite setup, including installation.
    And the picture quality is so much better that I would go with digital satellite over cable even if it were more expensive. We have barebones basic cable, too, because Jeremy occasionally takes a class that has lectures rebroadcast over cable, so we can directly compare the picture quality — it is HUGE.

  4. Beth, I will have to find out about the weird comments form thing when the boyfriend gets back in town. We haven’t looked into satellite because the main reason for no cable isn’t money, it’s the fear that we’ll become couch potatoes. However, I’ll have to remember the satellite option when we do eventually cave. We are all about improved picture quality.

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