October 10, 2016
‪‪The Criterion Collection‬ And ‪Turner Classic Movies‬‬ Team Up To Launch FilmStruck

‪‪The Criterion Collection‬ and ‪Turner Classic Movies are‬‬ teaming up to launch FilmStruck, a new movie streaming service. It will launch October 19, according to Nerdist. The focus of the new service will be on classic films, arthouse films, world cinema, and new independent releases.

FilmStruck will contain two tiers of content available to subscribers. The first is the material provided by Turner Classic Movies. According to a press release from Turner, FilmStruck will include a large mix of arthouse and classic films from a variety of movie studios.

"FilmStruck's impressive library will feature a deep roster of films from such celebrated indie studios as Janus Films, Flicker Alley, Icarus, Kino, Milestone and Zeitgeist, along with movies from Hollywood's major movie studios including Warner Bros. Among the hundreds of critically acclaimed and award-winning titles to be featured on FilmStruck are Seven Samurai, A Hard Day's Night, A Room With A View, Blood Simple, My Life As A Dog, Mad Max, Breaker Morant and The Player."

Seven Samurai movie promotional poster
[Image by Toho Company]

The second tier of content for FilmStruck is being called "The Criterion Channel." This will feature a huge amount of new and old films curated from the Criterion library of titles. Additionally, in a press release from Criterion, they note that they hope to expand the service in the near future to include movies that Criterion has not yet even been able to release on physical media.

"One of the most exciting things about the Criterion Channel is that it will give us a chance to capture that energy for our audience, to champion and show more films by filmmakers working today, not just the few we have rights to publish on disc. We'll bring you carefully selected contemporary films that you might not find anywhere else, including streaming premieres, and we'll invite those filmmakers to champion the classics they love, as they have been doing on our top-ten lists for years—but now the movies will be available for subscribers to watch right on our channel."
In a world of what seems like more and more new streaming services arriving all the time, FilmStruck may satisfy many hardcore film fans. Nerdist writer Kyle Anderson might be one of them. "I'm already contemplating dropping several other services because this might be all the movies I'll ever need."

Film buffs may be wondering how much all of them will cost them. Anderson breaks down the details on the different levels of pricing and programming available for viewers.

"There will be three tiers of subscription for folks to choose from. Their basic service for $6.99/month features all the TCM streaming titles plus extras, original pieces, and interviews; the middle tier for $10.99/month is everything in the basic, plus the entire Criterion Collection streaming library and special features, plus channel-exclusive content like master classes, filmmaker profiles, guest-curated playlists, and more; and the final tier is an annual subscription for $99/year, which saves you about $30 over buying it monthly."

Helena Bonham Carter and Julian Sands in A Room with a View promotional poster
[Image by Goldcrest Films International]

Movies in The Criterion Collection library are currently exclusive to Hulu subscribers, but they will be removed from that service on November 11. Despite the big step into streaming media, Criterion is careful to note that they do not intend to stop releases of physical media anytime soon.

"Once we're up and running, the Criterion Channel will not only offer continual access to our library of more than 1,100 films, along with their special features, it will also give us the chance to approach the Criterion mission in a whole new way...

"It's been thirty-three years since Criterion published its first special edition laserdisc and nearly twenty since the dawn of DVD. The launch of FilmStruck and the Criterion Channel marks another exciting beginning for us. We are as committed as ever to publishing the world's greatest films in definitive Blu-ray and DVD editions, but we think these new services are going to add a whole new dimension to the Criterion experience, and we hope you'll give them a try."

FilmStruck will be available on web browsers, Amazon Fire TV, Android, and iOS starting October 19. There is no official word on compatibility with Roku or Chromecast as yet.
[Featured Image by Proscenium Films]