Mission Impossible: Fallout, an incredible movie that performed incredibly well this weekend, could have done even better this week if MoviePass had their act together. Sadly, this was not the case, as the one-movie-a-day subscription program prevented all its users from choosing Fallout as an option. Instead, the app labeled it a “Premium Screening,” graying it out the entire weekend, meaning people would have to see Teen Titans Go! to the Movies instead…..or not.
Naturally, an uproar on Twitter ensued, with confusion, complaints, and cancellations all leveled at the company. This huge misstep, along with the newly maligned “Peak Pricing”- think Uber’s surge pricing for popular movies, has cratered MoviePass’ reputation. Increasingly cumbersome and expensive changes like this are quickly souring the public to the service.
Look, most people probably realized MoviePass would be an unsustainable service in its original incarnation; $10 a month to see every new movie would have been bonkers in the 80s, let alone now when tickets can cost up to $20 in some places. However, it seems like the shit hit the fan with nuclear force for MoviePass. Some major restructuring is needed, but if MoviePass somehow does survive, my prediction is it will become a matinee-type service. Only a few select non-primetime showings would be available, but it could provide value to moviegoers who don’t need to see movies at 9PM on Thursday night opening weekend. It won’t be great, but it could still find a niche.