All Things At-Home Cinema

21 April 2020

Woman eats popcorn while holding a remote on the couch


Netflix and chill has taken on a much more literal meaning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of us are whiling away our nights on the couch with a good film — but what do you do when you’ve burned through all of Netflix’s best picks? To navigate home movies outside of the traditional, we’re sharing our guide for all things at-home cinema:


Support Independent with The Music Box Theater

The Music Box Theater is a historic Chicago landmark, built in 1929 and repurposed as an art-house and repertory cinema in the 1980s. Today, The Music Box Theater is the best place to see something you wouldn’t find elsewhere, catch a singalong of an 80s musical or get wild with their shadowcast showings of the cult-classic Rocky Horror Picture Show. To support this independent theater and keep quirky cinema alive, you can now rent Music Box feature flicks from the comfort of your couch with their virtual cinema. Stream Chicago-directed and set earnest comedy Saint Frances, Brazilian political thriller Bacurau or Romanian heist crime film The Whistlers


Enjoy a Film Festival At Home

Due to the extenuating circumstances, many film festivals have had to cancel their live screenings and rethink their format for the current digital age. Luckily, for those of us sitting on the couch, that means we get to enjoy film festivals from the comfort of our homes. Just a few of your many options: the 42nd edition of notable French film festival Cinema du Réel has 13 of their films available for online screening, while French experimental film festival Collectif Jeune Cinéma has made dozens of their films available for free on Vimeo.


Explore New Streaming Apps

For those tired of the selections offered by their Netflix, Amazon or Hulu subscriptions, many other streaming services are answering the calls with their own niche collections and arthouse movie libraries. Buff up your cinephile knowledge with the Criterion Channel, a self-described “movie lover’s dream,” hosting classic, iconic films from around the world. Meanwhile, Kanopy is a platform that lets you stream movies through partnering libraries and universities just by entering your library card information online.


Stay tuned for more ways to stay connected, engaged and enriched during the pandemic, as we continue to seek beauty even in challenging times.