Cinema Paradiso is a bit of a hidden treasure. When everyone says film hire, the name that automatically springs to mind is Lovefilm but they don’t have a range of films that’s any larger than Cinema Paradiso (exact comparisons are hard since Lovefilm gives a total number of titles that includes videogames).
So now that the L word has been mentioned and gotten out of the way, what’s Cinema Paradiso like to actually use? Initial impressions are good, it’s a nice clean interface and the sign up procedure is simple but of course the proof is in the pudding and in this instance the pudding is made up of several ingredients: the range of films, the delivery time and the ease of use.
Cinema Paradiso’s range of films is pretty good, covering new releases are a large back catalogue of films spanning a wide selection of genres. I’m happily into watching world cinema stuff with subtitles and everything, and even I’m well catered for. In terms of the speed of service, I was pretty astonished. I’d signed up on the Tuesday, made my initial wishlist of films and was watching the first couple of them less than 48 hours later. That was pretty impressive in itself. The website is also quite straight forward to use- you can pick genres, have a look at new releases or look at popular/high rated films for inspiration. They also do Blu Ray films via an opt in process, presumably to stop technophobes getting confused and renting Blu Rays when they only have a DVD players.
It’s ideal for us as we have two kids and a trip to the high street to buy or borrow a film invariably ends up with the latest Peppa Pig opus clutched in the hands of the two year old whilst the 4 year old clings to something wholly more inappropriate. £8.16 a month gets you 4 films a month (2 at a time) but there are cheaper options. Since I walk past a couple of post boxes on the way to work, it’s an easy and convenient process.
Cinema Paradiso do a free trial option, so its worth having a shufty, even if you use the “L” service.
I was given a 3 month promotional membership of Cinema Paradiso to evaluate the service and write this review. Otherwise I was not provided with any other inducement.