All those who stayed loyal to MoviePass through its very public mishaps and mismanagements likely feel spurned this week. Moviegoers in the United States are celebrating a long holiday weekend, but attempts to use the MoviePass service will end up moot. The faltering movie subscription service will be out of service for “several weeks,” reports THR.
This indefinite break comes after the company behind the service attempted to introduce a number of new plans to get customers back in the fold, but the numbers reflect that these attempts have been unsuccessful, with a loss of 90% of its customer base in just 12 months. It’s a bit sad as someone who used to use MoviePass, but even more sad by watching just how slow and embarrassing the service’s death has been.
The mobile app will go through unspecific “improvements,” with MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe saying in a quite-obvious statement: “There’s never a good time to have to do this. But to complete the improved version of our app, one that we believe will provide a much better experience for our subscribers, it has to be done.” The only improvements I can think of for the app is 1) giving everyone back their money and 2) the company eating itself like a snake eating its own tail.
In the meantime, other companies have been attempting to fill in the void left by MoviePass’s not-yet-official-death. Sinema made a bold attempt to do so, but it ultimately failed with a similar failing business model. Conversely, AMC has been doing fine for itself with its own A-List subscription service, recently boasting in May that A-List had three times as many subscribers as MoviePass.
So the dream is still alive for a movie subscription service—perhaps MoviePass had to walk so everyone else could run. Although more accurately, MoviePass had to stumble, attempt to get back up, then fall again on its face, and then get run over by a truck, just so others can walk over its barely-alive corpse. I haven’t bought into any of the other subscription services as of yet—perhaps I’m just old-fashioned, or maybe I’m just waiting until someone gets it right in the long-term.
If we can’t enjoy films with MoviePass for this long weekend, we can at least get out some popcorn and continue to watch this company burn down.