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Fandor Free Review: How can I watch for free? (Updated 2022) has been receiving negative press in recent years for its internal struggles, but it may still have a promising future. A subscription to the service is cheap, and its impressive library will be of interest to cinephiles and film aficionados of all stripes. Whether or not Fandor will ever replace Filmstruck is uncertain, but even in its current state, it's nothing to sneeze at.


Nicole Sommer
Last updated: Tuesday, 03.October 2023
Author Biography
Hello. My name is Nicole Sommer. I am a big soccer enthusiast and do a lot of reserach around the easiest way to watch soccer on TV and online across the whole globe.
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If you're not familiar with Fandor, that's okay! Up until recently, I hadn't heard of it either. But after taking a deep dive into the service, I've been fairly impressed. Fandor is a streaming service that focuses on independent, classic, and foreign films of the arthouse variety. I expected it to be just like all the other streaming services out there, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it's a whole different type of service. So if you're looking for something different than what you're used to, I definitely recommend checking out Fandor!
After Filmstruck shut down, cinephiles everywhere realized the enormity of the loss. Filmstruck had an enormous collection of some of the best films ever made. I'm not talking about Hollywood blockbusters, either. I'm talking about high-brow, artistically pointed cinema.
Since I discovered Fandor, a few niche streaming services have surfaced, each vying for their chance to take Filmstruck's place. So I decided to poke around and see what I liked most and what stunk about Fandor's platform. Is it worth subscribing to? Who?s it for? Let's find out!

How it Started

Unlike other players on the scene, Fandor is a startup that was launched in the spring of 2011 at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas. Things have been pretty shaky in the years that followed. Leadership changed hands multiple times during this period. A big-name hotshot would take the helm as CEO for about a year or two, and then jump ship for something more lucrative.
When a company's leader leaves after such a short time, it may not actually be a red flag. But when it becomes a pattern, this usually spells trouble. And trouble there was. In December of 2018, the company suddenly laid off its entire staff and announced that it had transferred its assets to a new management firm. In a statement, CEO Chris Kelly said, ?We have completed a transaction that allows a new entity to seek to continue the service under different management . . . This is unfortunately an outcome for all who have contributed to and embraced our mission to date.?
Since the company's uncertainly began, potential customers have been confused and nobody seems to understand whether Fandor is still operational. Kelly's statement clarifies that the site is still streaming movies, but there is no specified time frame for its continued operation. If you're thinking about committing to a service, you don't want to sign up if the service might vanish within a few months. But for now, Fandor is here to stay.

How it Works

I recently learned that Fandor is still an active and thriving company. So, I wanted to talk to you about how their service works. Basically, it functions like most other premium streaming services. You need to sign up for a monthly membership, and this grants you access to the entire catalog. You can sign up directly through Fandor's website for $5.99/month, but if you have an Amazon Prime account, you can save a few bucks by paying for Fandor as an add-on channel through the Prime Video portal for just $3.99/month.
Once you make your account, you'll be able to access the library through the web client or the mobile app, and also through intermediaries like Roku or Prime Video. In a little while, we'll discuss each of these separately. For now, let's take a look at Fandor's catalog.

What?s Included

Since we're discussing a streaming service meant for cinephiles, we can't point to certain platform-defining films or series like we can with mainstream services. HBO, for example, has Game of Thrones. Disney Plus has The Mandalorian. But Fandor's titles are eclectic by the very nature of the platform. After all, the website itself states: "The Fandor community is full of movie freaks, genre geeks and tastemakers." So finding common ground to begin with can be difficult.
Still, if Fandor has piqued your interest, it's probably because you're interested in foreign, indie, and arthouse cinema. If that's the case, chances are that you're at least familiar with some of the classics of film history. Fandor, as it stands today, hosts some of those relics, including the following: - Nosferatu - The Exorcist - The General - The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari - The Phantom of the Opera
Then there's Fandor's more contemporary catalog. Titles here are strong and diverse. Here are some of the better-known ones: Oldboy Moon The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Requiem for a Dream
The library's genres include avant-garde, film noir, LGBTQ, horror, cult, silent film, and an array of others that offer something for everyone. This wide variety isn't just meant to appeal to the established cinephile, though. If you're interested in expanding your cultural vocabulary, Fandor's catalog offers the perfect opportunity to explore some of the world's most creative motion pictures. And to emphasize - when I say "the world's most creative motion pictures," I do mean the world: the international catalog touts flicks from Mexico, France, Egypt, India, Germany, Sweden, Spain, Japan, and many more.

Design of the Website

Once you're logged in, a trip to will bring you to the homepage's landing portal. Here, you'll see Fandor's Spotlight banner. What is Spotlight? Well, click on the banner and you'll learn that it showcases "thematically grouped, must-see films, hand-picked by Fandor's curators." At the moment, the Spotlight shines on family-related films, just in time for the holiday season.
Under the homepage's Spotlight banner, you'll find that the rest of the page is occupied by Selected Films. At the top of the website, a minimalist banner offers just two drop-down menus: Movies and Editorial. The former is pretty self-explanatory - hover over Movies and you'll see further sub-menus, like New Arrivals and Genres. But the latter, Editorial, is a nifty part of Fandor's website that warrants discussion. Fandor's Website Spotlight features a minimalist banner across the top with just two drop- down menus: Movies and Editorial. The former is pretty straightforward - when you hover over it, you'll see further sub-menus like New Arrivals and Genres. However, what makes Editorial worth discussing is that it occupies a whole separate section of the website on its own! This makes it easy to find what you're looking for without having to scroll through everything else on Fandor's website.
Fandor has a staff of editors who write op-eds and discuss films in an educational context. These pieces offer customers a chance to see what the staff thinks about the movies hosted on their platform. Often entertaining and always educational, these articles help you tap into a larger conversation about films in a historical and cultural context.

Mobile Experience

To be honest, Fandor's mobile app is the worst part of the platform. Don't just take my word for it. As of this morning, I saw that Fandor's app had an abysmal 2.4-star rating on the Google Play Store. Users agree that the app has a clunky navigation, a poorly conceived UI, and bizarre failings like the fact that you can't turn on subtitles. Most importantly, the in-app video quality is awful, and that's inexcusable when we're talking about a paid streaming service in today's day and age.

Prime Video?s Strengths

After taking all that into account, let's reflect a bit. If you're interested in indie, foreign, and arthouse film, Fandor is quite attractive in most regards. It boasts a robust selection of classics, a good amount of high-quality contemporary movies, and an eclectic collection of international films. Editorial articles are well-written and thought-provoking. And, to the relief of everyone, the service is very, very cheap - especially if you tack it to your Prime Video membership as an add-on channel for only $3.99/month.

Prime Video?s Weaknesses

Despite Fandor's numerous hardships, there is still a reason it hasn't gained as much traction as Filmstruck. First of all, the company has changed hands many times and suffered from general internal schizophrenia, making it difficult to deliver an A+ service. This has been particularly challenging due to the constant leadership and management roles being switched around like a game of musical chairs.
It seems that for now, things are relatively calm. This may allow the team to focus on fixing the mobile app. It's a pretty big deal. Aside from this, I noticed that a lot of people were having trouble unsubscribing from the service, which is not only irritating but also a little sleazy. If you don't like it, it should be quite simple to unsubscribe, rather than being made to feel like this obstruction was designed intentionally.
Nicole Sommer
Nicole Sommer is a true soccer fan and loyal supporter of FC Arsenal and 1.FC Köln. She plays actively her self as central forward in the women's aquad of TuS Köln in Germany. In her spare time she spends a lot of time online including researching the soccer streaming space. Her research has been published in several online soccer magazines.
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Fandor Free Review: How can I watch for free? (Updated 2022). has been receiving negative press in recent years for its internal struggles, but it may still have a promising future. A subscription to the service is cheap, and its impressive library will be of interest to cinephiles and film aficionados of all stripes. Whether or not Fandor will ever replace Filmstruck is uncertain, but even in its current state, it's nothing to sneeze at.

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