THE MOVIE THEATER — A few months ago, one of my fellow KSL.com contributor friends, Travis Poppleton, introduced me to MoviePass. When he told me about it, it seemed too good to be true.
Basically, MoviePass is a service that allows you to see up to one movie in theaters per day, every day, all for $9.95 a month. Sounds too good to be true, right?
Like many others, I thought $10 was worth the risk, but was still pretty skeptical. I tried for about a week to get signed up, but due to so many visitors to the website, it kept crashing. Eventually, I was able to sign up. A few weeks later, I got my MoviePass card and have been using it ever since.
History of MoviePass
MoviePass has actually been around since 2011. The CEO of MoviePass is Mitch Lowe, the co-founder of Netflix and former president of Redbox, and he recently decided that the company needed to lower their fees from $50 to $10 month. The response was massive. They went from 20,000 subscribers to 150,000 in just two days, and are still growing like crazy.
There were some growing pains from growing so fast, but those kinks are continually being ironed out.
How it works
Go to MoviePass.com, sign up and they will send you a MoviePass debit card in seven to 10 days. Once you get the card, you download their app. Through the app you can browse theaters and showtimes. When you find a movie you want to see, you go to the theater, you check in on your app and you go to the box office or kiosk and use your MoviePass card to complete the transaction.
Now that you know about the service and how it works, here's a quick look at the pros and cons:
- It is only $10 a month. If you see more than one movie in the theater a month, it will pay for itself.
- You can use it at most movie theaters. In my own experience, I have yet to find a theater that will not take it. Even when I was in Las Vegas a few weeks ago, it pulled up theaters right by my hotel.
- It allows you to see movies you are borderline wanting to see. Do you ever find yourself saying “that movie looks like it might be good, but I don’t know if I want to pay full price to see it.” Well, with MoviePass, it eliminates those fears. I also find myself not so mad walking out of the theater when the movie was not great knowing that I used my pass instead of paying the full price.
- It is simple to use. The app is well designed and the process has been pretty smooth for me getting tickets.
- There are no blackout dates. They do not limit when you can see your movie.
- MoviePass doesn't include 3-D or IMAX. I’ve never cared for 3-D but sometime movies like “Dunkirk” need to be seen in IMAX for the full experience.
- You must buy your ticket onsite. The app to check in only works 100 yards away from the theater. There is a feature on the app that tells you whether or not a particular theater allows you to use select seating, but I have yet to see a theater that does. So, if you are looking to go to “The Last Jedi” opening day, you can’t just hop on now and reserve your ticket. You have to go to the theater the day of and hope there is seating available. To go along with that, it only offers individual purchasing so if your whole family has a MoviePass, you all still need to check in one at a time.
- Other users I know have experienced complications with the app, and apparently it can be as bit buggy. My friend showed up five minutes before his movie started and the app would not let him check in for 20 minutes.
- Another friend complained to me that he is spending the money he saved using MoviePass on food and drinks at the theaters, which I think is one reason why theaters passed off on this.
MoviePass has won me over. If you love going to the movies, I highly recommend getting a pass. With how expensive movie tickets currently are, this pass will easily pay for itself if you see two movies a month. Who knows how long the $10-per- month fee will last, but for now, I say take full advantage of it.