If you miss losing yourself for 120 minutes in a dark movie theater and have exhausted your Netflix queue, the Content Gods are opening up the gates to free movies and TV right now. We've rounded up where to find these quarantine gifts, from new releases to forgotten classics and every guilty pleasure in between. Below, some of the best deals for free films and shows—because we could all use a win right now.
One of the four major networks is reviving the beloved "Wonderful World of Disney" series by broadcasting hit movies from the catalogue each Wednesday, beginning May 20. All of the titles are available to stream on Disney+ and include Up (June 3) and Big Hero 6 (June 10).
Right now, you can nab a 30-day free trial of Amazon Prime, filled with films including Oscar nominee The Big Sick and Late Night, starring Mindy Kaling and Emma Thompson. Other free perks on the site? Amazon is offering free kids programming here (no membership needed). And Fleabag fans, rejoice! You can watch the one-woman play starring Phoebe Waller-Bridge that inspired the show for only $5 here. (Proceeds from renting the filmed version will go to health charities and arts funding.)
Overwhelmed by streaming services and their endless supply of content? AppleTV+ is offering a free 7-day trial and a selection of its series' episodes for free at Apple.co/FreeForEveryone. There are free episodes of shows including include Dickinson (an ELLE.com favorite) and Kumail Nanjiani's Little America. On the movie front, you can stream The Banker, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Anthony Mackie, or dive into the nature doc The Elephant Queen.
If you've been craving a night at the theater, this is the streaming platform for you. This month, BroadwayHD will be adding several new titles to its repertoire of musicals, plays, and concerts. Buzzy titles include Victor Victoria starring Julie Andrews, The Last Five Years starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan, and the documentary Carole King: Natural Woman. Nine, the movie musical starring Penelope Cruz and Nicole Kidman, hits the service on June 9. Grab your 7-day free trial and imagine you're on the Great White Way.
Staying home means more time to peruse what's happening over on network TV. CBS announced it will air iconic films every Sunday night throughout June 7. May 31 will bring Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and June 7 will bring a Grease Sing-a-long.
Over on the network's streaming service, CBS All Access, you can get a one-week free trial before spending $5.99 per month. While there, watch the feminist baseball flick A League of Their Own or the '90s all-star ensemble of The First Wives Club.
Plan out your Disney binge over the course of a 7-day free trial. After that, you'll pay $6.99 per month for films including the recent Pixar release Onward and the Meghan Markle-narrated nature documentary Elephant. Sign up before Fourth of July weekend to watch the filmed version of Hamilton exclusively on the service.
If your quarantine watchlist includes finally tackling Succession or The Wire, now's your chance. You can receive a 7-day free trial by signing up for HBO or watch a few select titles for free—no HBO subscription required. These includes episodes of the Mark Ruffalo miniseries I Know This Much Is True and Run, starring Merritt Wever and Domhnall Gleeson. Right now, you can also stream a number of HBO documentaries for free, including Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind and McMillion$.
As time inevitably passes, another streaming service drops with a collection of splashy titles. On May 27, WarnerMedia debuted its new digital platform, which houses all 10 seasons of Friends, Love Life—a rom-com anthology series starring Anna Kendrick, and On the Record—a documentary telling the stories of women who've accused Russell Simmons of sexual misconduct. (Also, all eight Harry Potter films are available right now.)We've broken down the best titles to watch here. And good news for HBO subscribers: You'll get the service for free, alongside AT&T customers with select bundles. New customers can try HBO Max for seven days before paying $14.99 per month.
Hulu is offering a month-long free trial, so you've got 30 days to experience Best Picture Oscar winner Parasite and recently-released Portrait of a Lady on Fire for free. Then, it's $5.99 per month. (But, seriously, make those two movies a streaming priority.) And while you're there, don't forget Mrs. America and The Great.
Create a free IMDB account to access a catalogue full of movies, TV shows, and other exclusive content. Relive the 1994 version of Little Women, eat/pray/love with Julia Roberts, or catch-up with every season of Schitt's Creek. (We miss you, Moira!)
If you're the last person on Earth to binge Tiger King or Too Hot To Handle, you can get a 30-day free trial on Netflix. While browsing its selection, you can finally commit to that last hour of Scorsese's The Irishman or rewatch the excellent Lady Bird, which hit the service on June 3.
Netflix has also unlocked 10 educational documentaries and series for free on YouTube as a way to aid homebound teachers and students. Available on Netflix's YouTube channel and at this link, documentaries include Ava DuVernay's 13th, Knock Down the House featuring Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and the Oscar-winning short film Period. End of Sentence.
A new virtual film series from Paramount will cost you $1.99 per screening. And while that's not technically free, viewers will be able to interact with fans while they watch via text and video. Each event will have a special guest host. Upcoming events include a Mean Girls watch party and a series of Santa Barbara ballets.
Documentary junkies can get their fix with tons of free content available on PBS.org or the PBS Video App, including episodes of Frontline (like Oscar nominee For Sama) and Great Performances. In honor of Jackie Robinson Day on April 15 (the day he broke the color barrier in professional baseball), PBS released Ken Burns's 2016 documentary Jackie Robinson for free. It's one of many films, TV shows, and concert specials you can catch while sheltering at home.
Yet another new streaming service is debuting this summer, but you can catch a free preview of its content before the July 15 drop. Xfinity X1 and Flex customers can get a sneak preview of movies such as Fast & Furious and Atonement by saying “Peacock” into their Xfinity Voice Remote. While you're there, you'll find the Parks and Recreation reunion special and seasons of Bravo reality shows.
This recent entry in the streaming wars specializes in "quick bites" of entertainment that are optimized for mobile viewing and release Movies in Chapters. While that may seem counterintuitive to the film experience, you can test Quibi for 14 days free of charge. Two films available at launch include Sophie Turner's plane crash drama Survive and the dystopian thriller Most Dangerous Game, starring Liam Hemsworth and Christoph Waltz. Plus, select episodes are available for free, in full, on the service's YouTube channel. Here's a guide to all the best content on Quibi right now.
The premium cable channel is offering a 30-day free trial for its catalogue of movies, including Jennifer Lopez's Oscar-worthy turn in Hustlers and the documentary David Bowie: Finding Fame.
This ad-supported channel offers free movies—no free trials required. Its selection is a bit of a mixed bag, but boasts Oscar-nominated films including The Big Short and Chicago.
Plus, where to stream indie and classic films.
If your viewing habits skew from the mainstream, check out free trials from the following indie and classic film-focused streaming services:
The Criterion Channel (14-day free trial available here)
FuboTV (7-day free trial available here)
IFC Films Unlimited (30-day free trial available here)
IndieFlix (7-day free trial available here)
Kanopy (free to education professionals and those with a library card here)
Mubi (7-day free trial available here)
Sundance Now (Extended 30-day free trial with the code SUNDANCENOW30 here)
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