With the nights rapidly drawing in and the autumnal weather making us all want to baton down the hatches and hibernate in a den of blankets and onesies, it’s no surprise that at this time of year the lure of the telly and the sofa is stronger than ever.
And whilst sitting on your backside in front of a screen obviously isn’t the healthiest thing in the world, there are benefits to be had. I mean come on, what’s more hygge than snuggling up with the family under a faux fur blanket, popcorn bowl in one hand, hot chocolate in the other and watching the latest Disney film!?!
Now, I don’t mean to completely and utterly rock your world, but did you know that LoveFilm is closing down?
I know right…
Well, as it happens there’s a new DVD service on the block that’s stepping up and offering a fantastic alternative to LoveFilm. Phew for a minute there I was proper starting to stress out at the thought of not being able to watch the latest blockbusters from the comfort of my own living room!
Now, being the try before I buy kinda gal, I thought I’d try out Cinema Paradiso’s free 14 day trial and let you lot know whether it’s worth it or not.
OK so first things first you need to sign up to the service and as I said I went for the option that included the two week free trial. This option falls under the ‘Limited Package’ category meaning you are restricted to 6 DVD rentals per month and you can only have 2 out at a time. Seems fairly generous to me, because if you think about it by the time you’ve watched them and allowed time for sending back, you’re unlikely to fit in many more than that anyway. Once the free trial is over you will then be charged £9.98 per month, so if you do end up optimising the package and getting all 6 of your allowance, it works out at less than £2 per DVD!
For the purpose of this review I wanted to test how easy it is to use the service, how wide the selection of films is and how quickly Cinema Paradiso could turn around delivery of the DVDs.
The registration process is really simple – it’s the usual fill in your details, choose the package, set up payment details and away you go.
In order for you to start receiving your discs, you need to create a wish list of approximately 10 titles of your choosing. This again is a really simple process, you just need to search for a title either by name or by genre and then click the ‘Add’ button to add it to your list. One thing I really liked about the wish list is that you can order it by priority, so say for example there’s a film you desperately want to see, you can move it to the top of your list, letting Cinema Paradiso know that if they have it in stock this is the one you would like first.
After I had created my wish list it took hardly any time at all for Cinema Paradiso to send me an email verifying my account and confirming which 2 DVDs had been sent out to me. In fact I was so impressed with the levels of communication throughout the whole process, I received emails letting me know when and which DVDs had been sent out to me, when DVDs that I had sent back had been received by Cinema Paradiso and when it was recommended that I add more titles to my wish list. To sum up…a really great, reliable service.
Range of Film Titles
With over 90,000 titles there is literally something for everyone. From TV series to recent films and world cinema, each category is further broken down into genre, new releases and top 100 making the selection process really easy and the choice wide. Each title is given a star rating and once you’ve set up your wish list titles are recommended to you based on other titles you have favourited or watched. To give you an idea, during my use of this service I received and watched the box set of Big Little Lies, the documentary That Sugar Film and the films Boyhood and Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children.
Such a quick turnaround, I was so so impressed. Just look at this:
- I put my first order in on Thursday 28th Sept.
- 2 DVDs received Friday 29th September.
- Sent back Sunday 1st October.
- Email received Tuesday 3rd October confirming they had received them.
The DVDs arrive in an envelope, very much like that of LoveFilm if you’ve used them in the past. You just need to make sure you follow the opening instructions on the front, as the same envelope is used to send the discs back.
I found this service to be efficient, simple to use and good value for money and the free trial offer is worth taking advantage of.
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*Service gifted for review