How Many Movies Can One Man Watch?

Photo by H Berends/

My husband is a very laid-back guy — he has an easygoing personality and doesn’t have any hobbies to speak of. His one vice — which, of course, costs $$$ — is smoking (time to quit, honey!).  But the man just LOOOOVEESS his movies. He spends all of his free time watching them through various outlets, and I’d be lying if I said it didn’t drive me nuts.

Why can’t he just sit and read a book? It’s just not in his DNA. I’ve even caught him pausing a movie to watch something else on his laptop (which is on the coffee table in front of him — and the TV). For me, it’d be the best day ever if there was no more cable TV, or DVD players, or YouTube.

Even Baby Frugalista is now getting in on the act, courtesy of her father, who occasionally plops her on his lap to watch the Muppets, Fraggle Rock, Scooby-Doo, or his new favorite, Wonder Pets. Naturally, this generally happens when Mommy is taking a nap or running errands.

Here’s a rundown of how Mr. Not-So-Frugal gets his (excessive) movie fix:

— The super-duper cable package. The whole enchilada. This means we have every cable and movie channel known to man. The movie package costs $32/month in addition to our normal cable package. We also get access to the video-on-demand feature for all channels we’re subscribed to, which, thank goodness, is included for “free.”

— Pay-Per-View. Yes, my dear husband also occasionally orders movies (costing anywhere from $1.99 to $4.99) from our cable TV provider. This is usually when he’s impatient to watch a movie before it comes out on DVD/video-on-demand, or it he has an itch to see a film immediately.

— Netflix DVDs. Yes, the old-fashioned DVD-in-the-mail package. He’s on the two-fer plan, which now costs $12/month with new Netflix pricing that goes into effect on September 1.

— Streaming Netflix. Again, thanks to the Netflix price increase, this will now cost us $8/month. The movie selection isn’t as large for the streaming option as it is for the DVDs, but Mr. NSF just loves the cheesy old movies prominently featured online. The movies are streamed through our Roku player, explained in the next point.

— Streaming Roku. We don’t have a gaming system like the Wii, PlayStation or xBox through which we can stream the Netflix movies, so I got Mr. NSF a Roku player for Christmas last year, costing about $70. The Roku also features additional TV and movie “channels” we could subscribe to, but thankfully, this is where Mr. NSF finally draws the line.

Monthly, the costs for my husband’s movie fix is about $50-$60. I have to mention that we don’t ever go to the movies, and spend almost nothing else on entertainment.

AND I’m finally giving in to Mr. NSF’s request that we get smartphones once we’re eligible for new cell phones in April. That will be another $40/month, but I hope to find a deal on the phones (maybe a BOGO?). I hope he doesn’t think he’s going to watch movies on the phone, too.

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