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The new MoviePass is back ahead of Memorial Day weekend, but is it any good? What to know

The new MoviePass is back ahead of Memorial Day weekend, but is it any good? What to know
The new MoviePass is back ahead of Memorial Day weekend, but is it any good? What to know

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Like the Phoenix rising from the ashes, MoviePass lives to fly another day, returning to 4,000+ theaters nationwide ahead of Memorial Day weekend. While still in beta, the new MoviePass subscription launched on Thursday, May 25 to the public in the United States.

This follows the original service’s shutdown in 2019 and the new iteration being tested in a limited market last year. With MoviePass' past defeat still fresh in the minds of many consumers, and with other streaming services pricier than ever, you may find yourself wondering if this new iteration is an improvement or if it's doomed to fail. Here’s what we know.

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What is MoviePass?

Originally launched in 2011, a MoviePass subscription allowed customers to watch a movie a day in theaters. Next to the likes of Netflix and the ability to binge-watch shows for hours on end, this might not sound like much. However, what made MoviePass stand out is the fact that MoviePass worked for any movie at any (commercial) theater. And the best part? It was only $10 a month. For a time, it dipped as low as $6.95 a month. Many at the time felt the price was too good to be true. And in a way, it was.

What happened to the old MoviePass?

As it turned out, allowing people to watch a movie a day didn't make for a very sustainable business. The price drop to $6.95 a month was followed by an explosion of new subscribers, and with the company buying tickets at list price from theaters, MoviePass ultimately began to lose money. Towards the end of its life, the original iteration of MoviePass would limit the number of free movies subscribers could watch per month to three, with additional movies being discounted $5 from the ticket price. MoviePass previously shut down its services for weeks at a time, preventing users from using it to purchase tickets. These cost-saving measures were too little too late, and caused major headaches for customers. The company finally filed for bankruptcy in 2019.

How does MoviePass work?

This new iteration of MoviePass, referred to as being in beta on its site, operates on a credit system wherein users will use credits in lieu of a movie ticket. Credits are fluid in their value, as the number of credits it costs to see a movie reportedly varies based on demand. This means that a weekday matinee would cost fewer credits than a weekend evening show.  Credits will roll over from month-to-month, allowing you to keep unused credits for up to two months. Unfortunately, you can’t use MoviePass to fund a friend’s ticket, as the credits can also be used for one ticket per movie.

Join the MoviePass Comeback Now

🚨The MoviePass beta is now available to the public!🚨

Posted by MoviePass on Thursday, May 25, 2023

How much is the new MoviePass?

There are three tiers available, each with a different number of credits. The $10 Basic plan gives 34 credits which translates to 1-3 movies per month, according to the site. The $20 Standard plan gives 72 credits, or 3-7 movies per month. The Premium plan is $30 per month and gives 113 credits. And lastly, the limited availability Pro plan, which costs $40, gives you 640 credits and allows you to watch 30 movies per month (the number of movies you could watch for $10 with the original MoviePass).

Should you get the new MoviePass?

It’s a bit too early to say, but viewer discretion is advised. The good news is that the pricing seems much less ludicrous than the original iteration of MoviePass, so if you’re worried about this version quickly going the way of the dodo, rest assured that this seems to have more longevity.

Whether or not you’re getting a deal is up in the air and this ultimately comes down to how far your credits will take you when demand is high. If you’re only able to see one movie a month with it, it’s not much different than buying a ticket directly from a movie theater. But if you’re able to see three movies for $10, then you’re getting a pretty good deal. The jury is still out on whether or not this demand-based credit system will prove to be worth it.

Ways to upgrade your home theater instead

Upgrade your home theater with a TV that has world-class performance and wide array of features.
Upgrade your home theater with a TV that has world-class performance and wide array of features.

Weary of joining MoviePass? It’s only natural to feel that way after the way the original MoviePass played out. You can play it safe, of course, by getting movie tickets on an as-needed basis directly from theaters. Or, you can upgrade your home theater instead with some of our favorite products. It’ll feel like a movie theater in no time from the comfort of your home. All you need is to queue up a movie from your streaming service of choice.

From mood lights to a high-quality screen, here's what you need to upgrade your home theater:

Related: Make your own home theater with Memorial Day TV deals at Amazon, Walmart

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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.

This article originally appeared on Reviewed: MoviePass 2023 launch: How new plans work and if it's worth it