Redbox Instant Combines Streaming Videos With Kiosk Choices for Subscribers #GotItFree

Redbox Instant

I was recently invited to try out Redbox Instant, the new home streaming service from Redbox, via BzzAgent. The following review is my own words and thoughts.

Most people are familiar with Redbox, the instore kioks that offer nightly rentals of videos, but Redbox now also has a home video streaming service.

I was invited to sample the home service via a one-month trial, and here’s what I thought of it.

Redbox Instant does have some newer titles, as well as a back catalog of older films, but it doesn’t have nearly the selection of its closest competitor, Netflix. Some of the films I watched are the 2012 remake of Red Dawn, the first Hunger Games, and Skyfall, the last James Bond film. You can also use your account to rent/buy digital copies of new releases.

But where a subscription to Redbox Instant excels is your monthly fee includes four free kiosk rentals each month. So if there’s a recent release you want to see, or just happen to want an actual DVD to watch, you get four rental credits to do so every month.

There is also a Redbox Instant App that allows users to stream movies away from their computers via select android phones, iPhones and tablets covered, at 3G, 4G or by Wi-Fi.

Redbox Instant costs $8 a month ($9 if you want blu-ray rentals), the same as a Netflix streaming service account, but Netflix charges you an extra fee for physical DVD rentals through their service.

If you’re the kind of movie watcher who wants to do a combination of streaming and DVDs, then a subscription to Redbox Instant might work for you.

You can try it out for yourself with a free one-month trial of Redbox Instant at redboxinstant.com. They will ask for your credit card, but as long as you cancel before the trial month is over, you will not be charged.

My Favorite Vegetarian “Meat” Offerings

For the last few months, I’ve been cutting back on my meat consumption by trying out various meat-less meat options. In all fairness, I’ve only tried offerings by Boca, Gardein, and Morning Star Farms, because that’s what’s readily available to me in the stores I shop in.

If you’re looking to try going meat-less every now and then, here are my favorites to try:

Veggie burgerBest Burger: Morningstar Farms Grillers Prime
These really do taste quite burger-like. The texture is a bit off, but piled in a bun with toppings, and a few condiments, and I really don’t notice a difference, except there’s less fat.

Best Chicken Patty: Boca Spicy Chicken Patties
The texture and the taste are nearly identical to spicy chicken patties at fast food restaurants. I like to add a sweet & spicy condiment on top, or go with a little mayo and lettuce on a bun. I love these!
Runner-Up: Gardein Crispy Chick’n Patty – If you can’t find the Boca ones, these are really good, too, but with less spice.

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Playing It Forward Combines Music and Charity Into a Win for All

Playing It Forward  John Legend

Combine surprise concerts by well-known musicians with donations to charities that deal with children’s issues (education, etc), and you have the exciting new concept known as Playing It Forward.

Many know Robert Downey Jr as an actor, but he is also a talented musician, whose interests in music were nurtured in school. Together with his wife, Susan, via their production company Team Downey, they have partnered with Crackle, the multi-platform entertainment network, to organize these impromptu concerts that benefit charities of the participating artist’s choosing.

Playing It Forward  John Legend

Presented by FedEx, the first artist to participate was John Legend, who set up with a piano at the Culver City Town Plaza in Los Angeles. Last minute social media clues were the only advance notice given that this concert was going to happen. The Grammy Award-winning artist performed three fan favorites, “All of Me,” “Ordinary People,” and “Shine” to an unsuspecting and amazed crowd.

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Kmart and Sears Offer Free Holiday In Store Pick Up #spon

Presented by Mami Innovative Media, this is a sponsored post on behalf of Sears and Kmart. All opinions expressed here are my own.

The holidays are a busy time of the year, with shopping, decorating, baking, and more, on top of your regular schedule of work and family time.

Sears In-Store PickupOne way to lighten the schedule is to shop online when it’s convenient for you, but then you incur shipping fees. Well, Sears and Kmart want to help out with free in-store pickup.

Simply order online at either store, then arrange to pick up your purchases in-store in as little as 5 minutes – or whenever you’re ready. You can even have a friend or relative pick up your order and pay in-store with cash. How easy is that?

With in-store pickup you’ll avoid lines, busy stores and the wasted time of walking down every aisle.

Kmart In-Store PickupBoth Sears and Kmart offer $10 back in points when you spend $59 and free in-store pickup, letting you earn more points while shopping thousands of gifts online in the comfort of your own home. Order online from Saturday, December 7, 2013, at 6pm CT, to Tuesday, December 10, 2013, at 9am CT. Shop instore Sunday, December 8, 2013, only.

Now it’s no question that you should do your holiday shopping at Sears and Kmart while earning more points and try the free in-store pickup at Sears or Kmart, but there’s now a question of, what will you do with more free time over the holidays and your extra points? A few ideas include: give yourself a gift using your points before volunteering at a shelter, making gingerbread houses with the kids or simply putting your feet up and enjoying the view of the Christmas tree.

Learn more at Sears: http://bit.ly/HL896t and Kmart: http://kmrt.us/1bmIoRk

Disney’s Frozen is Great Family Film with Lots of Laughs [Review] #DisneyFrozen

Disney's Frozen

Disney’s Frozen is probably my favorite Disney animated film since The Lion King (not counting the Pixar films). It is smart, cute, and funny, with strong lead female characters that can save themselves.

Frozen is based on the Hans Christian Andersen fable “The Snow Queen,” and tells the story of Anna (Kristen Bell), an optimistic princess who sets off on an epic journey to find her sister, Elsa the Snow Queen (Idina Menzel), whose icy powers have accidentally trapped the kingdom in eternal winter.

Disney's Frozen

Along the way, she meet up with a rugged mountain man (Jonathan Groff), his loyal reindeer Sven, and a hapless snowman named Olaf (Josh Gad). Together, they battle the elements and others to save Elsa and the family kindgom of Arendelle.

Continuing the strong female lead of Brave, Disney has created two strong female leads with Elsa and Anna. While they are technically “princesses,” they’re not fussed-over royalty. They’re women who can take care of themselves, and ultimately save each other.

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Watch Breaking Bad Blooper Reel Teaser Video

If you’re like me, you’re sad that the series Breaking Bad ended this year. However, you can relive every episode when Breaking Bad: The Complete Series comes out on Blu-ray DVD on November 26.

Breaking Bad: The Complete SeriesThis collection of every episode of the show is packed on 16 discs inside a collector’s money barrel packaging.

It also features over 55 hours of special features from all seasons, a new 2-hour documentary, a 16 page booklet with letter from Vince Gilligan, a commemorative challenge coin designed by Vince Gilligan, and a Los Pollos Hermanos apron.

An awesome Christmas gift for the Breaking Bad fan you know, right?

Among the special features is a blooper reel from the final season. Thanks to Entertainment Weekly, here is a teaser video from that blooper reel:

Watch Aningaaq the Short Film Companion to the Movie Gravity [Spoiler]

If you’ve seen the brilliant movie Gravity, starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney, there’s a scene in the film where Bullock’s character of Dr. Ryan Stone sends out a distress call in the capsule. That call is received by someone who doesn’t speak English, and Stone eventually breaks down and asks the man to make the dogs in the background howl for her.

Aningaaq

Well, Warner Bros actually had a companion short film to Gravity that showed the other side of that mayday conversation, called Aningaaq.

It was directed by Jonas Cuaron, son of Gravity director Alfonso Cuaron, with whom he also co-wrote the Gravity script. It was filmed in Greenland, on a budget of about $100,000, and dialog from Aningaaq and Gravity are wound around each other in both films.

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Delivery Man Delivers Laughs and Feel Good Moments (Review) #DeliveryMan

Delivery Man poster

Earlier this month, I had the chance to see a sneak preview of the film Delivery Man, directed by Ken Scott, and starring Vince Vaughn, Chris Pratt, and Cobie Smulders.

The film is a remake of Scott’s 2011 French-Canadian film, Starbuck. In the film David Wozniak (Vaughn) learns that the many donations he made to a sperm bank under the alias “Starbuck” twenty years earlier ended up fathering 533 children.

Yes, that’s right…533 children.

Delivery Man - Brett and David

A large number of the kids sue the bank to learn who their father is, and Wozniak has to decide whether or not to come forward. Not an easy decision since Wozniak is a slacker working for his family’s butcher shop, his best friend Brett (Pratt) warns him against fatherhood, and his pregnant girlfriend Emma (Smulders) has told him she doesn’t think he’ll be a suitable father.

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