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All-you-can-watch MoviePass returns

All-you-can-watch MoviePass returns (photo)

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It sounded too good to be a true: $50 bucks a month for all the theatrical movies you could watch at basically any national theater chain. That was what a company called MoviePass offered when it first launched at the beginning of July. Sure enough, it was too good to be true and their beta test was called off at launch because the company hadn’t cleared their service with the movie theater chains that would be honoring it. When exhibitors heard about MoviePass the same way we all did, by reading about it online, they weren’t too pleased. And that put the kibosh on the whole thing for the time being.

Today, JoBlo (via Variety) says that MoviePass is back, even though they still haven’t reached an agreement with exhibitors. Instead, they’ve partnered with a company called Hollywood Movie Money, “that specializes in vouchers for movies.” This is Mike Sampson from JoBlo’s explanation:

“Now, MoviePass subscribers would just print vouchers at home and the company will reimburse theater owners the full amount. So how exactly do they plan on making money offering up unlimited tickets but still having to pay the theater owners back at full price? Well, they’re hoping you don’t really use the service as much as you think you would. The big hook in their business model is that you pay $50 for unlimited movies but probably only see 3-4 movies a month. That would still allow them to clear around $10/month.”

This strikes me as a strange business model. Essentially, MoviePass is banking their future on customers not using their service. They plan to find people who are so obsessed with going to the movies that they’ll pay $50 a month to see as many as they want, but are also so disinterested in going to the movies that they never bother to get their money’s worth out of the service. That seems like a very small niche of wealthy, stupid consumers. By the way even if a New Yorker used MoviePass to “only see” 3-4 movies a month, at the citywide average of $12 a pop, that’s already $48. That means bye bye profit margin even on customers using MoviePass at the company’s preferred levels.

Seems risky to me, but what do I know? I barely passed high school economics. I’m an extreme case, I know, but I see probably ten to a dozen theatrical movies a month. That makes me the perfect customer for MoviePass and also the worst case scenario for MoviePass. We’ll see if I get the chance to try it out. I’d like to.

Would you buy a MoviePass? And if you did, would you use it infrequently enough to make it profitable for MoviePass? Tell us in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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