Courtesy of The New York Times

MoviePass: Barely Getting By?

Their redacted updates in a nutshell

By Lizbeth Galeno Contributor

When hearing about MoviePass for the first time, people’s initial reactions are awe at how good the deal is. It’s almost hard to believe.

MoviePass is a movie theater ticket subscription that initially marketed itself as a card allowing you to watch a movie a day, with a small monthly fee of $9.95. It was a steal, especially considering how discouraging it can be going to a movie theater these days where tickets are $12.

The movie pass arrives in the mail with the promise that you’ll be able to watch more movies than ever before. A benefit of MoviePass is that it could potentially increase movie theater sales, since streaming services and rising ticket prices have over the years brought along a decline in theater attendance.

However, things aren’t running as smoothly as promised. Subscribers are reminded of this every time another news story reveals MoviePass’ newest change, stating that they’ve increased the fee for new subscribers, changed some rules, or in this case, changed them back. The most recent rule change was perhaps their biggest one yet.

With confused subscribers and doubtful onlookers, people begin to wonder how long this dream can last, and how movie theaters might take a direct hit from the fallout.

On May 30, MoviePass announced a change to both new and current subscribers. Movies were not allowed to be watched more than once. Additionally, some users received a popup on their app telling them that they had to upload a photo of their ripped ticket stub. If they failed to do this, it could lead to a subscription termination. New subscribers were even wedged out of the one movie a day luxury. Their monthly fee promised only four movies per month. Suddenly, the huge promised deal was changing more and more. It seemed like things might be slipping through the cracks.

Courtesy of The New York Times

With so many updates, angry subscribers, fee changes and even select AMC theaters beginning to pull out of accepting MoviePass, moviegoers could not help but question the future of their MoviePass fairytale. Then, just days later, MoviePass decided to retract their newest four movies per month plan. After this controversy, MoviePass brought back their unlimited one movie a day monthly plan.

With all these inconsistencies, people begin to ask questions. How well is the company doing? How are they making money? How long is this going to last?

With confused subscribers and doubtful onlookers, people begin to wonder how long this dream can last, and how movie theaters might take a direct hit from the fallout.