MoviePass barely passing…but it passes

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Movie Pass is a subscription service  that works at most movie theaters, such as Marquee Cinemas.

Staff Photo by Maxwell Bryn

Movie Pass is a subscription service that works at most movie theaters, such as Marquee Cinemas.

America loves its media, but America does not love paying for it. In the age of the internet and digital piracy, we can access a plethora of content for low standard fees. With physical formats of media such as CD stores and movie theatres being left behind, old businesses of America’s yesteryear are desperately trying to keep up with new age competitors. MoviePass is a direct affront to the content riddled powerhouse of America.

For only ten dollars a month, subscribers can see one movie a day every day in theatres. Proven to be a business plan that can reap a profit, MoviePass has taken people aback. MoviePass intends to revitalize the pleasant experience of supporting films respectfully in theatres all across the world. However, is the experience truly pleasant? MoviePass, while it works, presents subscribers with many complications, some annoying enough to make current subscribers reconsider their subscription altogether.

Using a MoviePass isn’t as simple as showing the theatre a screen on a phone and walking in. First, one must acquire the MoviePass itself; a physical Mastercard credit card with its own expiration date, CVV code, number, and patron name. Upon buying the subscription, MoviePass quoted me a waiting period of two weeks to receive my card. After the two week period ended, I was left without a card but the monthly charge on my account.

For a company to expect to charge its subscribers without even letting them access their services is heinous to me, but somehow reasonable to MoviePass themselves. ”

I discovered this after a slow four day long texting conversation with customer support. MoviePass does not believe in utilizing telephones. It was clear that MoviePass sources their labor out of country, establishing a language barrier that makes it more difficult for many consumers to resolve their problems. However, it appears many never do get solved. My questions about when I would be receiving my MoviePass were never answered, due to a lack of a reply. Four additional weeks came and went until my MoviePass was finally in my hands.

Acquiring a MoviePass wasn’t the only hurdle in the race to see a movie; one must link it to the smartphone app that registers when subscribers are at a movie theatre. It’s pleasant to think that a subscription service of 150,000 subscribers (1.5 million received monthly) could hire someone a little more professional than they did when creating the app. The MoviePass app is riddled with crashes, bugs, an unorganized layout, and incorrect geomapping. The process to register the card took eight tries. None of the movie’s information, such as picture, summary, and ratings are filled out. Theatres sometimes register on the app’s map of nearby theatres, or never do at all. The app, after every crash, logs the user back out. The app does not allow users to register for a movie more than 30 minutes ahead of time and further than 100 yards of the theatre. Due to this, MoviePass cannot be used for popular showings of films, such as the release day of a Star Wars movie, due to being sold out months prior. The application is only an added insult to injury already derived from the extended wait time, poor business ethics, and horrendous customer service.

None of that mattered to me, however, when I was watching my third movie of the week. While the application is bugged and the company itself unprofessional, the subscription works. Numerous movies later, MoviePass proves an amazing way to get out of the house, enjoy a movie, all while spending only a fraction of the price. Moviepass has more than enough room for improvement, and if you’re willing to put up with their current issues, the business truly does have a steady foundation of delivering a service that they say they will deliver to lean upon.

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