VLC CACA ASCII Output

If you are logged into a remote terminal and wish to quickly view the contents of video files, you can use the CACA output module of VLC to view an ASCII version of the video through the terminal. This is handy if you haven't set up X forwarding, or if X isn't available.

vlc -V caca fileToOpen

I'd even recommend doing it just for fun on your local machine. The results are surprisingly good!