As you may know, there’s a new horror movie streaming service called Shudder. It comes from AMC Networks, and costs $4.99 a month (or $49.99 a year). It’s in beta right now and only open to those who get an invite. You can go to shudder.com and sign up to let them know you’re interested, and you’ll get an email when they’re ready to invite you.
I had the luxury of getting an early invitation, and I’m currently taking it for a spin. My guess is that you’re wondering if it’s worth giving a try. I’m going to say yes. Here are ten reasons why.
Shudder offers over 200 horror movie titles so far, and it’s not just a bunch of bargain bin bullshit. They really do have a lot of good stuff. Sure, you can find quite a few of the titles on other services like Netflix or Hulu, but they also have some that you won’t. The offerings range from old school classics to modern horrors, and include films from various parts of the world. Long story short, it’s a damn good introductory catalog. I’d expect them to add a lot over time, and ultimately it will depend on how frequently they update the catalog that will determine if they can keep subscribers for the long term.
As mentioned, it will only cost you $4.99 a month, so that’s significantly less than Netflix. Obviously Netflix has a lot more to offer beyond horror movies, but if your’e reading Modern Horrors, I’m guessing you’re a pretty big fan of the genre and spend a lot of your time consuming it. Considering that a month’s worth of this service costs less than most VOD new releases, you tell me if it’s worth it.
As an added bonus, there’s a constant live stream of horror movies playing on the site so if you can’t decide what to watch and just want to check out what’s on, you can do that too. It’s like having a live horror TV channel in addition to the on-demand offering. This could make for some fun Twitter viewing parties.
If you’re like me, you have a Netflix Instant account as well as Netflix DVD membership. My DVD queue is enormous and it never shrinks no matter how many I get shipped. I’m constantly adding to it. By offering titles that Netflix Instant doesn’t have available, Shudder lets me more quickly get some titles that I may not have prioritized in my queue. I’ve been a member for one day and I’ve already watched two films I’ve had in my Netflix DVD queue for months.
Shudder is ad-free viewing. You could only hope that it would be considering you’re paying a subscription fee, but even still, it’s nice to know that up front. You won’t have to sit through annoying commercial breaks between kills.
I’ve only watched a couple movies on the service so far, but I’m pleased to report that they both played flawlessly with no noticeable deterioration in quality of picture or sound. There’s nothing more annoying than having to watch some pixelated garbage when you’re trying to watch a film. Thankfully, that’s not an issue here, at least in my experience.
It probably helps that so few people have access to the service at this point, but I’m also pleased to report that I had no problems with playback. No buffering or interrupted service. Like I said, the movies I watched played flawlessly.
While Shudder is only available for web browsers right now, they’ve already said that they’ll be launching on iOS, Android, and Roku soon. This will please many people. In the meantime, you can still watch the service on your TV if you have a Chromecast. Just use the Chrome web browser to beam it to your television, and you’re all set. Chromecasts only cost $35 by the way.
Shudder is actually letting uses request titles, which is awesome. They have a pretty good selection out of the gate, but there will no doubt be other films you’d like to see available. They have a form where you can submit a request for a film, and they use this feedback when trying to make purchasing decisions. So far, I’ve put in a request for Possession.
This is the thing that really got me to sign on. They’re giving away a sixty-day free trial of the service so you can give it a good, thorough test drive before deciding if you really want to spend $5 a month.