Review: Moviepass and Recent Movies

Moviepass and I have a love/hate relationship.  It is hard to rationally hate a program that allows you to see 4 movies a month (or a movie a day, depending o your plan) for a fraction of the regular cost.  And yet.
Most people who have Moviepass, myself included, still somehow manage it.

Why?
Because the customer service is straight out of the seventh circle of hell.  Imagine the speed of the DMV and the helpfulness of, well, something extremely unhelpful.

I’ll share my own personal story, but if you want details there are tons of anecdotes online of various customer service fails.

Having heard about Moviepass while in France, I was very excited to sign up when I returned to the US.  As I understood it, Moviepass was a risky business venture that would allow one to see a film a day for a fixed price (approximately $10).  My guess is that they operate this way in the hopes of raising theater attendance enough the theaters come to rely on the new influx of viewers, and are willing to give into Moviepass’ demands. A cut of the ticket or concessions sales, perhaps?
Anyway, I have no idea how that’s working for them or even if it is actually their planned course of action.

When I got back to the states Moviepass had just stopped offering one-a-day passes in favor of four movie a month passes and access to some radio channel.  The two plans are approximately the same price.  When I first saw this on the Moviepass website, I emailed asking if it were no longer possible to sign up for the film-a-day option.  After a week and a half with no answer, I subscribed to the only plan available to me- the four film a month one.  It has been just over a month since my account was activated (ten days later, when I received my card).  I have never used my radio account (as pretty much expected).  Maybe another week later, around the time I got the Moviepass card, I received an email back from a customer service representative, telling me that they had checked my account and I was subscribed to the four-film option. No shit, Sherlock. That’s because I didn’t receive a response for more than half a month.
Shortly thereafter, Moviepass beginning offering the unlimited option again. I emailed explaining my position and saying that I would like to switch plans.  After another rather extended wait, I was told that that was not recommended and that I could wait until my three months of plan had elapsed and then could switch.  If you cancel your plan before it is completed, you must wait something like nine months before you can sign up again.
So yes, Moviepass, super bad customer service.
Also, not my complaint, but the complaint of many others- they have a tendency to change the conditions of your contract without giving you the option to opt out, without forewarning, without any price change.
Meh.  It’s a first world problem to the tenth degree but it’s frustrating and rude.

Films I’ve seen since I got home:

No spoilers.

A Quiet Place: I wasn’t super into the trailer but heard so many good films I had to see it. They were all true, it’s amazing.  And worth seeing in a theater, the eerie and tense silence of everyone in the audience is a really interesting atmosphere.

Solo: Not so great, guys.

Deadpool 2: I liked Deadpool better, in large part because it was such a breath of fresh air and had never been done before. Of course, a sequel doesn’t have that advantage. The humor was still good, if you liked Deadpool the first you’ll probably like this, and it was a fun watch, but I don’t need to see it again.

Will You Be My Neighbor?: Mr. Rogers is a prince among men and we should all emulate him.

American Animals: I have very mixed feelings about this film and it’s subject: the true story of four college freshmen who plan and execute a heist on one of their campus’s rare book library.  They’re both disgustingly entitled and kind of sympathetic. The soundtrack is great.  Some interesting film and narrative choices are made that slow down the action and pull you out of the story a bit, but they ultimately make the film much more unique and interesting and give it more depth.

Hereditary: An amazing amazing film. Scary, yes. But there are so many layers to it, so many readings and so much subtle foreshadowing that you only notice in hindsight. Ultimately a viewing experience that left me feeling respected by all involved in the filmmaking process, which is pretty rare. And it’s a film for which close-watching really pays off. Like you feel rewarded watching it by all of the little ties you notice. Brilliant.

Coming up next?

Incredibles II.

 

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Friday Links 5/11

boop.jpgHappy Friday and Happy Mother’s Day weekend!
Do you have any plans?
In a few hours we (my parents and I) will be going up to Belfast, Maine to spend the weekend with my Aunt Susan and Bill, whose mother owns an alpaca farm.  There will be alpaca shearing, vegan food, and tactful discussions about Infinity War without mentioning to movie fan Bill (it’s so nice to be around other movie fans) that I never plan to see it.

I’ve been reading a lot, falling behind on the films I have checked out from the library, gardening for hours a day, and enjoying the springly weather. I also cooked some interesting pancakes yesterday so that  have foods when I return next week. I will report back.

What’s happening on the worldwide web?

  • Speaking of movie people, this film looks like it could be amazing. Also really excited for The Seagull, an adaptation of one of the few Chekhov pieces I’e actually read.
  • A beautiful essay that I’m at a loss as to how to describe.
  • The Duchess of Northumberland sounds like a fun lady- she created the garden at Alnwick Castle, possible the deadliest garden in the world.
  • How does Deadpool always win the promotion game? This is genius.
  • One of the greatest things about being back in America is the access to SNL’s youtube uploads. I know the main story (DESERVEDLY) is the release of This is America by Donald Glover- but let’s not forget about the Barbie skit.
  • #MeToo and Junot Diaz: Cycles of victimization and victimizing, sexual harassment, celebrity and race.
  • When two celebrity ladies (internet fashion personae?) give birth in close succession and get together to share their experiences with the early days of motherhood.
  • I love this Public Place Meditation Guide– it’s very closely related to some wisdom my mother shared with me years ago: practice seeing the divinity in everyone around you.
  • A mathematical model may explain how two brains agree on the experiential profile of smells.
  • Possibly the most charming interview I’ve ever seen. I think I may have just fallen in love with all three of these men.
  • Have you liked any pages created by Russian bots?Ask Facebook.
  • A complex algorithm predicts the likelihood of final season Game of Thrones deaths. Bye, Daenerys.
  • An amazing photograph. I love whales.

Most Anticipated Film Releases 2018

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I’m back in France (landed yesterday morning) but still thinking about films. Some things never change.

  • The Post: They’ve asked tons screen this at the White House which I find very interesting given 1) the content and 2) the presence of the very-overrated Meryl Streep.
  • A Fantastic Woman
  • Loveless
  • Winchester: This doesn’t actually look good but I love creepy house films and I could be wrong.
  • Red Sparrow: Ballerina Jennifer Lawrence becomes Russian Intelligence agent. Could be good. Could be Atomic Blonde 2, Atomic Redhead.
  • Isle of Dogs: Wes Anderson!
  • Lean on Pete: Horses!
  • You Were Never Really Here: Joaquin Phoenix and guns!
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story: There’s been a lot of behind the scenes drama with this project. I hope it turns out well because I will never not love a good Star Wars. And I’ll be sad if they besmirch the Harrison Ford/Han Solo legacy.
  • Deadpool 2: Of course.
  • Ocean’s 8: I was questioning this on a kind of Ghostbusters remake basis but the trailer looks excellent and has assuaged most of my fears. Love that the heist is set at the Met Gala.
  • The Incredibles 2: Edna’s coming back!
  • Mulan: Live action Mulan. I’m torn. I don’t believe there’s a need but if one is coming I might be here for it.
  • Bohemian Rhapsody: Another film with a lot of behind the scenes drama, but I’m excited. Queen is cool.
  • Creed 2: It didn’t need a sequel but I did like the first Creed quite a bit.

You’ll notice that the list os largely big Hollywood films, as these are the ones that tend to schedule their release dates far into the future (as opposed to the smaller independent films I tend to prefer).

Friday Links 11/17

zeb

I woke up too early for no reason so here’s a links post, on time for once!

Sorry for using up all of your free NYT articles!

Man Pain

Brought to you by men.

There’s a video we watched in my Law, Technology, and Culture class that compiled the parallel stories of many movie and television leading men who suffer from man pain.  I’ll give a go at explaining man pain, but first, here’s the video, which will likely clear up a lot of confusion. 😉 Continue reading “Man Pain”