iTunes Movie Rental Nightmare

On Sunday night, I got the perfect opportunity to try out the brand new iTunes Movie Rental service because a bunch of people wanted to watch Ratatouille and I had conveniently misplaced my copy. So, I log on to the iTunes Store, against many protests that I shouldn't spend money to watch a movie, because I really wanted to try out the rental service and didn't mind spending $4 to do it. Everything went successfully as far clicking the Rent button and the movie starting to download, but when I double-clicked the movie to play it while it was still downloading (something you can apparently do on fast enough connections), it gave me one of those "unknown errors" that iTunes is infamous for. This was pretty ominous and I got the feeling that "movie night" wasn't going to happen; still, I decided to wait it out until the entire 1.25GB finished downloading because it was going to take only about 8 minutes or so. Once the movie finished downloading, as I expected, it yet again gave me the unknown error and wouldn't play. Sigh, I said, signed off, signed on, de-authorized, authorized, restarted - nothing.

Finally, since I was running 10.4.11, I thought I'd try it on a Leopard machine to see if it'd work there. So, I signed out of my 10.4.11 machine, de-authorized it and borrowed a friend's Leopard MacBook, on which, disappointingly enough, it told me that the movie was authorized for another machine and it wouldn't play. So, a complete no-go. This is the point at which I gave up and emailed Apple Support, who sent one of their idiotic auto-reply suggestion emails the next day, to which I've replied back and told them that no, none of their obvious solutions work for me and yes, I would like a real person to respond to my request.

I was really hoping for this to be seamless ("hoping" is a bit misplaced; I had pretty much "assumed" it'd be seamless), and I have to say this is probably the first time one of Apple's products has so blatantly failed me. I hope I get a useful reply from Apple Support soon. I will update this entry if/when I do.

[UPDATE: I got the money refunded, but no solutions.] 

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