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A Broke-Ass Guide to Seeing FREE Movies

Updated: Aug 01, 2013 14:00
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This movie is racist! They are playing off racial stereotypes of both black people AND leprechauns.

Seeing movies is great and all but it can be pretty expensive.  I mean in cities like San Francisco and New York, movies cost over $10!  That’s just ridiculous.  What follows is a list of ways you can see all kinds of movies without having to come out of pocket.

Movie Hopping: I’m sure most of you have done this before, but for that small percentage of you who hasn’t, all I gotta say is buck up! What are you afraid of, getting arrested? That’s not gonna happen, the worst that will go down is that they will kick you out of the movie theater and tell you not to come back. But come on, it’s not likely that their even gonna remember what you look like.

But anyways, for those of you who don’t know what movie hopping is, it’s when pay to see one movie but then see multiple ones that day. In fact, if you really don’t have shit to do you can make a full day of it. Pack a lunch and some beer or a flask and hit up a matinee. Then when your movie is over, just walk out with the throng of people and make your way into the next one you want to see. The best way to go about it is to make a little game plan ahead of time. Figure out which movies you want to see that day, and a listing of their times with you (either print it out from the computer or get it from the newspaper). Then when you first get to the cinema, scout out which movies are in which theatres. That way you’ll know exactly where to go when it’s time to see the next movie. And the most important part of all of this is to just act normal. If you look like you’re trying to be sneaky, they will think something is up.

Bar Movie Nights: Speaking of drinking at movies, lots of bars do movie nights towards the beginning of the week. Not only is it a great chance to watch Dazed and Confused or Point Break for the 17th time, it’s also an occasion to get some cheap booze. Bars that do movie nights usually have drink specials to accompany them.

Guerrilla Drive-In Movies: Most old school drive-ins are used for swap meets these days. What can you do? I mean, it’s usually technology that drives a culture forward and because of this, outdated things (no matter how cool they are) often get left behind.

Damn, couldn’t they have waited until it got a little darker?

But the people involved with are trying to change that. Short for Mobile Movie, MobMov is, 'œthe global guerilla drive-in movement bringing back the forgotten joy of the great American drive-in. Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, what used to be a dark and decrepit warehouse wall springs to life with the sublime sights and sounds of a big-screen movie. Best of all, the MobMov is free.' People drive up to an abandoned warehouse or other big unused wall, tune their radios to the frequency playing the movie sound, and then sit back and enjoy a motion picture. There are hundreds of chapters across the globe, so just go to the website to see which one is closest to you.

Rooftop and Park Movies: What could be better than going to a rooftop or a park with cheap wine and cheap friends, and watching classic movies with hundreds of other revelers? Nothing. Every time I’ve gone to something like this it always ended up being a great night. They usually happen in the summertime. Google the name of your town and 'œrooftop movies' or 'œpark movies' to find out what’s cracking in your part of the world.

Get Free Movie Tickets: A lot of times theaters will run promotional screenings of movies that are about to come out. They do this to help create word of mouth buzz; they want you go out and tell all your little friends how awesome such and such movie was. They figure you got a big mouth. You probably do. So how do you get your paws on tickets to such free screenings? The internet, that’s how.

Free movie tickets AND and HIV test? Looks like everyone wins on this one!

A good place to start is The way it works is, you sign up for a free membership and then enter your city and state. Then you find out which screenings are around you and you click on the one you want. Then you simply reserve your tickets and print them. While the tickets go quickly, the site lets you know what day they’re gonna be available. Then on that day, it gives you and hour/minute countdown, so you’ve just gotta be ready to swoop them then. ***UPDATE – Read the comments below for an update

Another site that lets you get free movie passes is Wild About Movies. If you go to you can print passes to tons of different flicks. All you gotta do is scroll to the bottom and click on your city. Then find the movie you wanna see click on it, click on the thing that says, 'œPrint Passes to XXX' and follow directions. Actually, fuck it, why am I even walking your though this shit step by step? If you can’t figure this out by yourself, you’re hopeless. Just note that while Wild About Movies looks like it’s just full of spam (it kinda is) you can still actually get movie tickets from it. Another such website is except this one looks a lot less sketchy.

Stream Movies for Free: If you don’t want to go through all the hassle of trying to wrangle free tickets, or you don’t feel like actually going to a movie theater or doing the whole netflix thing, you can always just stream a movie.

If I knew how to take screen shots, I would’ve done it instead of stealing this pic from the internet.

There are literally scores of sites out there that let you pick almost any movie you want and watch it on your computer for free. Just to name a few:,,,'really the list goes on for a long time. Some of these have higher production quality than others. One such is but all the studios are involved with Hulu thus taking the power out of the hands of the internet users. In this case the studios are deciding what shit they will let you watch for free. Fuck '˜em.

photos from,, BedStuyBlog, DailyPennsylvanian, NetworkingAudioVideo,

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Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Stuart Schuffman, aka Broke-Ass Stuart, is a travel writer, poet, TV host, activist, and general shit-stirrer. His website is one of the most influential arts & culture sites in the San Francisco Bay Area and his freelance writing has been featured in Lonely Planet, Conde Nast Traveler, The Bold Italic, and too many other outlets to remember. His weekly column, Broke-Ass City, appears every other Thursday in the San Francisco Examiner. Stuart’s writing has been translated into four languages. In 2011 Stuart created and hosted the travel show Young, Broke, and Beautiful on IFC and in 2015 he ran for Mayor of San Francisco and got nearly 20k votes.

He's been called "an Underground legend": SF Chronicle, "an SF cult hero":SF Bay Guardian, and "the chief of cheap": Time Out New York.