It’s rare to find anyone with a huge movie collection sitting on their shelves or even a digital one stored locally. That’s because there are now dozens of apps that deliver an on-demand ability to view your favorite movies through your television or smart device.
Plus, digitally stored movies occupy hard drive space quickly (with each being around 2GBs in size on average), so storing a large collection requires quite a bit of hard drive memory, which financially could quickly become prohibitive.
Everyone is likely familiar with streaming juggernauts like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney +, Hulu, Apple TV+, and HBO Max, but all of these (as well as multiple others) offer their vast movie and tv show libraries for a monthly subscription. But what about those users who would prefer to save money but still have access to a vast library of movies to enjoy for a night off or time with family.
Luckily, not all apps with movie libraries and good streaming capabilities charge users for their use. Many are actually offering their movie collections for free, making these a very cost-friendly option for casual movie viewers. Let’s take a look at 10 of the best free streaming apps for movies.
Let’s start with the best name in free movie streaming, Crackle. You may be familiar with this app as Sony Crackle, but they got acquired by Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment (CSS Entertainment), which renamed it to Crackle.
Crackle is one of the best free streaming services that offer on-demand movies and TV series. They do have to make their money somehow, so the trade-off for the free ticket to in-home or mobile device choices, you do have to endure some ads.
One way you can actually see fewer commercials is by creating an account or logging in with Facebook. But you don’t have to; You can access Crackle pretty much everywhere and start streaming right away.
Featuring many classics and more recent Sony films, Crackle is a great option for those who do not want to splurge on a monthly payment for their entertainment.
If you do not want to create an account to watch free movies, Tubi might be a good app choice for you.
The app boasts an impressive library of generally older films, but it does include some newer titles too and the app does add more movies and tv shows to its library weekly, so there will never be a shortage of choices.
The films are broken down into fairly broad categories so that any section can offer you a healthy selection. All of the movies are free to view without exception. Most of the movie choices are not compressed for space savings, so you can enjoy nearly any selection in crisp HD format.
You are not limited to watching Tubi on the screen of a mobile device either with compatible apps available on most smart TVs and streaming devices like AirPlay, Amazon Fire Stick, and Chromecast.
With its nicely developed, smooth, and intuitive interface, Vudu is a great choice for someone looking for a good free movie selection.
The movies and TV shows available are organized into sensible categories to make it easy to find the movie type and title that you feel like consuming. To play the movie, you need only to tap on the title to get the experience started.
One great feature of Vudu is that their movies can be downloaded to be watched offline. On top of that, there is a Disc to Digital feature that can be used by which the viewer scans the barcode of a DVD they own in order to be able to view the digital version of the film.
Another key feature is that aside from free movies, Vudu also offers a wide variety of movies that you can pay for to watch. Unlike a monthly subscription, you can utilize this pay-per-view method to ‘rent’ a movie that may not fall into the free movies domain, but a fun night’s splurge can still be available for your viewing pleasure.
Did you think YouTube was simply a place for video content of basically everything but free movies? Well…surprise, YouTube actually has loads of free movie content that can be watched as long as you are willing to put up with the occasional ads.
If you need something different to watch with kids, YouTube’s free offerings are fairly heavily geared towards a younger audience and also feature some more obscure title choices that you can select.
While identifying free full-length features on YouTube may not be the most intuitive thing, the platform curates a movie playlist that puts many of the movie selection choices in one convenient place. Each of the movies available will be labeled as being available with ads for full disclosure.
There are other movies (older ones or classics) that are not included on the curated playlist too for those who love the nostalgic feel. There are also plenty of movies you can rent for a small price on YouTube, and consume those without the interference of ads, much like many other movie renting platforms.
Available on multiple streaming platforms, FilmRise is another option to stream movies for free. It has movies and tv shows, with new content being added daily into categories that include crime, action, horror, drama, comedies, and documentaries.
To access FilmRise you do not need a user account (it’s optional). This will not stop you from being able to keep track of the desired watchlist so you can track what movies or shows you wish to watch at a later time.
FilmRise houses many cult classics and favorites from years past, offering a great chance to catch up on movies you may have wanted to watch when they came out but passed on them for bigger contemporary titles.
You can access FilmRise on your smartphone (iOS and Android) and streaming devices like Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Facebook Watch, and Xbox.
Pluto TV is a great option for people who want to get some free on-demand movies in addition to many custom niche channels.
For those looking for just movies, and are comfortable watching them as the air live or through on-demand titles, might be overwhelmed by the number of channels available, but if that is something you can live with, there are quite a few options for content to stream.
It’s important to point out that Pluto TV lets you hide the channels you are not interested in watching off your guide as well. There are many popular and classic movies available, including some relatively newer titles. You can also view movies that Pluto will air at a later time on one of their many channel options.
The best part is that Pluto TV can be streamed from almost any streaming medium you can think of including (but not limited to) Android, iPhone, iPad, various smart TV platforms, Amazon Fire, Windows, Vizio, and Chromecast.
Dish-owned TV streaming service Sling TV is one of the best cable tv substitutes out there. It provides a select grouping of channels that are commonly watched and even allows 50 hours of DVR recording time. But that is the subscription version.
You can also enjoy the free Sling experience by logging on through your browser or through their app, available on most streaming platforms. The free version of Sling gives the viewer access to a lot of on-demand content (ad-supported) including movies and tv shows.
Sling’s interface is nicely designed but isn’t quite tailored to On-Demand searches. That certainly does not mean that you cannot find a great many options to watch, and the quality of picture streams in high definition quality with rare issues in this regard.
If you have a library card at a library supported by Kanopy, then you have access to this cost-free, ad-free streaming platform.
Once you have logged on to Kanopy, you will be able to access tens of thousands of movies for free, which can be streamed on your phones, tablets, streaming mediums, and smart TVs.
The movies can be browsed by genres and accessed easily through Kanopy’s clean interface. It even includes a section loaded primarily with movies for the little ones that everyone can enjoy together as a family.
Another popular free movie watching option is Popcornflix. The app contains the option to choose from movies, tv shows, and viral videos, all spread into separate sections designed for easy browsing.
The movie section is divided up further into sub-genres like action, drama, comedy, etc. You also won’t be relegated to just watching older, more obscure films, as Popcornflix offers a good selection of newer, more popular films, most of which can be found under the new arrivals section.
If you are a fan of lots of sub-genres of Asian cinema, check out Viki. Viki offers subtitles for users who do not speak the language and offers a wide selection of Asian movies free of charge.
It’s certainly something a bit out of the ordinary, but many movie lovers do not care much for where their movies are from, as long as they can kick back and enjoy some quality acting and storytelling.
Asian movies are not the only thing available. There are also plentiful options for lifestyle shows and television dramas from Korean, Japanese, and Chinese sources. There is even a chat option that lets you communicate in real-time with other people using Viki and is a great way to meet those with similar viewing tastes.
There are ads of course, but for a low monthly subscription starting at just $4, the ads can be removed, and access to fresh, new content is enabled.
There you have it: our list of the 10 best movie apps.
Did we miss your favorite one?
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