Everything you ever wanted to know about MoviePass, the movie subscription service

credit: moviepass.com

First off, this is NOT a sponsored post. I've been a member of MoviePass—the $9.99 a month program, not the new $89.99/year program—since the end of September, and people keep asking me if it's worth it. I figured I'd write a post about it that will talk about my experience with it, and also answer any questions that people might have.

credit: moviepass.com

I was one of the first people to sign up for MoviePass back in August or September when the $9.99/month deal was announced. As my long-time blog readers know, this blog used to be called Yes/No Films, because I see a LOT of movies. Matinees in my area (Detroit area) are around $6-7, and night movies are $10-12, so to see UNLIMITED movies (1 per day) with MoviePass for only $9.99 a month sounded like a great deal.

When you order an e-ticket, this is the confirmation screen.

What you can do with MoviePass:
  1. You can see one movie per CALENDAR day. I swear this used to be per 24-hour period, but now the app says it's per day. Pretty simple.
  2. You can either go to the theater and do a "check in" or you can get an e-ticket - but it varies per theater. The MJR Theatres chain in my area are all e-tickets on the app, which I love. On a day when I want to see a movie, I open up the app—regardless of how close I am from the theater at that time—and reserve a ticket for myself (see screenshot, above). If it's a theater that has reserved seating, I can also choose my seat at that time.
    If the theater is *not* an e-ticketing theater, you must be within 100 yards of the theater to check-in, and after you do so, you'll get a message that says you have 30 minutes to purchase a ticket with your MoviePass debit card (see screenshot, below).
  3. You can see movies that normally you might be hesitant to waste money on. For example, I still want to see Pitch Perfect 3 even though the reviews are awful. I will most likely go to MJR Troy on a random weekday or weekend and see it, with MoviePass. 
  4. You can double dip with movie reward cards! When I go to Emagine or AMC to buy a ticket, I use my Emagine Rewards or AMC Stubs rewards cards, and I get the points for buying a ticket. For MJR, you cannot do this, because MoviePass uses e-ticketing for them. 
  5. You can see movies at any theater in your area, for the most part. There are a few that don't participate, just double-check on the app before you go. You can also use MoviePass out of state, I believe, if you are traveling.
When you check-in for a film ON the app, this is the confirmation screen.

What you CANNOT do with MoviePass:

  1. You cannot see 3D, IMAX, or any other 'special' versions of the films. You are only allowed to see 2D versions of the films, even if it's a 2D IMAX (or EMAX, with our local Emagine chain) showing. I believe MoviePass *might* be offering another option soon that includes 3D or IMAX films, though, based on a recent survey they sent me.
  2. You cannot get more than one ticket per MoviePass plan. If you have a friend or significant other that also enjoys seeing movies, I highly recommend them getting a MoviePass plan too—my boyfriend and I see movies together all the time now because he too has a MoviePass account. 
  3. You cannot book a ticket more than a day in advance. If you are using an e-ticket, you can book it any time that day, when you are going to the movies. This presents an issue if friends are booking tickets way ahead of time—for example, we paid for our tickets for IT and the new Star Wars because we reserved seats in advance. We saw Star Wars at the new Super EMAX screen at Emagine Novi, too, so that would not have qualified for a MoviePass ticket anyways. 
  4. You cannot cancel your account then immediately decide to re-activate it. In the fine print, it says that once you cancel your account, you have to wait nine months to re-activate it.
What your MoviePass Mastercard will look like

My overall thoughts on MoviePass:
  • I see about 4-5 movies per month using it, so for me, it is worth the price. That amounts to about $2 per movie. I still see a few screenings too, for my blog, because it is nice to see movies in 3D and/or see them early.
  • The customer service is not very good but is getting better. The other day, we wanted to see The Shape of Water at MJR Southgate, which is an e-ticketing theater and also has reserved seating. We got a "Failed to Create Reservation" error message, but I sent a message in their live chat feature to a tech, who was able to check us in manually, and we used our MoviePass debit card at the theater to buy tickets.
    (another time, we tried to use the in-app chat feature and no one responded.)
  • Even if you only see two movies a month, it's worth signing up, especially if you live in a city where movies are expensive. I mostly see matinees, but night movies in my city are about $10 each. If you see 4 movies a month, that's $40 ... and you're only paying $9.99 with the service.
  • I'd welcome a chance to be able to see 3D or IMAX movies with it, even at a more expensive monthly price. I would be up for paying $10-12 per month if I could see 3D or IMAX movies. I'm hoping MoviePass will go in that direction at some point.
  • It took about 1-2 months for me to receive my actual card in the mail, so plan accordingly once you sign up. It might have just been because I signed up in the initial "rush," but it took a while for me to receive my card. I was able to see movies at MJR Theatres, meanwhile, because of their e-ticketing feature on the app, so that was fine, before I received my card in the mail.

When it boils down to it ... I saw four movies in the past four days (The Greatest Showman, The Shape of Water, Father Figures, and Molly's Game), and without MoviePass, I probably would have only seen one or maybe two of those. 

TL;DR: MoviePass is a great service for film fans, and I'm curious to see if they add any options to it in the future.

Have you signed up for a MoviePass card yet? Why or why not?

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