Going to the movies is expensive. Tickets can cost more than $10 and the snacks are even worse. MoviePass makes going to the movies less of a financial burden by offering an inexpensive subscription-based service. The concept is as simple as it sounds. See one movie a day for only $9.95/month.
How MoviePass Works
When signing up for MoviePass, they give customers a special debit card. Using the MoviePass mobile application, choose a theater and a movie time, then pay with the MoviePass debit card. Now, go enjoy the movie.
There are a few stipulations, of course. Choosing the movie time does not work when farther than 100 yards from the theater or more than 30 minutes before showtime. Buying advanced tickets is not an option. This might affect those who enjoy seeing mega-blockbusters on opening night.
The service also cannot choose 3D or IMAX movie showings. This does not bother me, but I rarely see movies in 3D or on the IMAX anyway. While I think 3D and IMAX are awesome, I don’t like paying the extra money, and the concept behind MoviePass is to save money.
There is no family or group plan, so the service only purchases one ticket. Purchasing two tickets requires two MoviePass accounts, debit cards, and subscriptions. Perhaps in the future, MoviePass will offer a family plan or allow for a multi-person plan with separate profiles like Netflix and Hulu.
My Sign-up Experience
I heard about MoviePass three years ago when their subscription-based movie service cost $36/month. The idea sounded unique and brilliant, so it excited me when they lowered the cost to $9.95/month. I signed up and learned I was not alone in my excitement. The number of people rushing to sign up crashed the MoviePass website and mobile app.
After completing the sign up, the site said I would receive my MoviePass card in seven business days. But due to the number of new accounts, MoviePass did not have enough machines to create the debit cards in time. I received an email stating I wouldn’t be receiving my card for another two weeks. Two weeks passed and I received another email stating it would be another two to three more weeks. One last email arrived stating I would receive my card in five business days.
Finally, I received the card in the mail, almost a month and a half after I initially signed up. And I felt like I’d been given some ungodly amount of power. Ask anyone who knows me and they’ll tell you that I love movies. The first thing people notice about me when they enter my house is either my love for Star Wars or for movies.
Once I was able to use the MoviePass system, I knew that my movie watching experience would never be the same. Going to the movies felt as good as it did when my dad used to take my brothers and I. It didn’t feel like I was paying too much money or making some insane financial commitment for my entertainment.
Why MoviePass is a Good Thing
Economies inflate and technology updates, but the financial model behind movies has mostly remained the same. And the movie industry struggles to stay afloat by raising ticket and refreshment prices. Something needs to change with how we pay to see movies.
The music industry had to respond to the digital era and now the movie industry must do the same. Some companies have started selling movies digitally shortly after the releasing the film in theaters. I already own Spider-Man: Homecoming digitally even though it is still showing at my local theater. While this option is a step in the right direction, most people won’t pay $20-$30 for a film they haven’t seen, and it doesn’t help those people who actually want to see a movie at the theater.
The theater is a different experience altogether and one that I thoroughly enjoy. I’ve been going to the movie theater since I was a child, and it is one of my favorite places to go. But with rising ticket prices, it is harder to make it there as often as I’d like. The movie industry needs a way to get people in the theater. In my opinion, a subscription-based service with such an amazing low price such as this is a step in the right direction.