The name Curzon is almost synonymous with a great cinema experience, and now with Curzon On Demand that experience can be enjoyed wherever you are, as they offer a host of independent, arthouse films and new releases in their new on demand movie service.
There’s a whole host of film on demand services on offer, so how does Curzon On Demand shape up?
For one thing, Curzon On Demand is free to join, so you can take a gander at the set-up for yourself. Plus there’s no monthly fee.
A major bonus for those twiddling their thumbs waiting for the latest flicks to make their journey to the non-metropolitan areas, some cinema releases are available from the very first day they hit the big screen in the Big Smoke!
That on its own is enough to get the cinematic juices flowing, and to water your mouth that little bit more, Curzon focuses more on arthouse and independent films – precisely the movies that may not even make it down to Devon and Cornwall.
In keeping with the cineasta approach to movies, Curzon On Demand comes ‘with dialogue and discussion around the films to get the full extent of the film experience’.
Where possible – depending on the speed of your internet connection – the films will be streamed in HD. Quibbles? Of course there are quibbles. Navigation around the site can feel a bit cumbersome, and I have a personal bugbear about registration forms which insist on ‘title’.
Also the curated experience of new releases isn’t as wide-ranging as we’d hoped. Corpo Celeste, was available but not The Kid With the Bike, both were featured in our new release preview, so it was frustrating not be able to choose both.
We plumped for Corpo Celeste, the story of a teenager adapting to the life in Italy after a 10-year stay in Switzerland. It is the directorial debut Alice Rohrwacher, looks beautiful and raises issues of the moral and religious layers that can smother adolescence.
Signing up was easy, and the film was available in its own Curzon player. The picture was crisp, and when we watched it there were no buffering issues. There’s another slight quibble that there wasn’t a pop out option – but this is only slight; you are, after all, meant to be enjoying the movie experience rather than continuing browsing.
A nifty aspect is that they keep a record of the movies you’ve previously seen, especially useful when you’re working on the back-catalogue and your memory goes a little awry.
Talking of back-catalogues, the arthouse and independent movies are the real draw of this system. Plus, there’s the bonus of being able to obtain the films when you want them.
There are no monthly charges – you pay for what you watch, and Corpo Celeste as a latest release came in at £6, but you’d be able to catch up on the back-catalogue for as little as £2 per flick.
You’ll be able to watch the films on your computer, iPad, iPhone and selected Samsung Smart TVs, and you have seven days to view them.
It will be interesting – and exciting – to see how the service develops, and in a really competitive market it looks like Curzon On Demand has elegantly carved out its own niche, and is somewhere we’ll be dipping into regularly.
Pop along to the Curzon On Demand site, check out the movies on offer and sample the service.