In the overcrowded video streaming world, Vudu has a ton of competition.
The Walmart-owned online streaming service has to compete for your eyeballs with Netflix, Hulu, iTunes, Google Play, Crackle and Amazon Instant Video, among many others.
That’s why Vudu is trying to get your attention by letting you stream free movies, no strings attached — as long as you choose from a selection of 34 movies.
The movies available for free screening are a bit of a mixed bag. They include classic action flicks like “Predator” and “Highlander,” more recent films like “Spectre,” and comedies like “Sisters” and “Get Smart.”
Also, nearly a third of these free movies have wrestling themes or feature pro wrestlers. That’s because this particular offer was promoted in connection with a recent pro wrestling pay-per-view event.
What the Heck is Vudu?
What, you’ve never heard of Vudu? Well, get in line.
Despite having been around since 2004 and owned by Walmart since 2010, Vudu tends to get overshadowed by its better-known competitors.
Vudu’s video content can be streamed on tablets, computers, smartphones, Blu-Ray players and smart TVs, HDTV, Roku, PlayStation, XBox and other devices.
It’s structured more like iTunes or Amazon Instant Video than Netflix or Hulu. It’s a pay-per-use service, so you pay a one-time fee for every movie or TV show you rent or buy. The sign-up is free, and there are no subscription fees.
In contrast, subscription services like Netflix and Hulu Plus charge you a monthly fee to watch an unlimited amount of content. Those services tend to be cheaper if you watch a lot of movies.
How to Get This Deal From Vudu
If you’re interested in renting a free movie from Vudu, go here and type in one of two redemption codes — ROYALRUMBLE or SNAPCHAT.
Here’s a list of movies you can rent with either redemption code:
- “Beyond the Mat”
- “Fast Five”
- “Magic Mike”
- “Man on the Moon”
- “Man with the Iron Fists”
- “No Holds Barred”
- “The Punisher”
- “Ready to Rumble”
- “The Running Man”
- “Scooby-Doo! and the WWE: Curse of the Speed Demon”
- “Scooby-Doo! Wrestlemania Mystery”
- “They Live”
- “The Wrestler”
Movies you can rent with the redemption code ROYALRUMBLE:
- “The Expendables”
- “Get Smart”
- “The Longest Yard”
- “The Princess Bride”
- “Rocky 3”
- “San Andreas”
Movies you can rent with the redemption code SNAPCHAT:
- “12 Rounds”
- “Central Intelligence”
- “Conan the Destroyer”
- “GI Joe: Retaliation”
- “The Marine”
- “Mr. Nanny”
- “Road House”
- “Santa’s Slay”
- “Suburban Commando”
Many of these movies aren’t currently available on Netflix or Hulu.
Is Vudu Worth It?
This is a risk-free chance to see how Vudu’s video technology works on your favored video viewing device.
Again, you don’t have to sign up for a subscription, so this costs you nothing.
If it works for you, should you consider switching to Vudu? The streaming service is trying to entice you with offers like Join free. Rent 3: If you join, your first three rentals are 99 cents each.
Reviewers say subscription services like Netflix or Hulu Plus are a better value if you’re an avid movie watcher.
“Vudu likes to brag about getting rentals quicker than Netflix, but if you watch a lot of movies, it is definitely more expensive,” says tech website Lifewire. “For the cost of two rentals on Vudu, you could have a subscription to the Netflix streaming service and watch as many of their streaming titles as you want.”
However, other reviewers note one of Vudu’s strengths: It allows users to buy or rent movies as soon as they’re available on Blu-Ray or DVD.
“VUDU also makes current seasons of TV shows available for purchase, so it’s a great source for those wanting to stay current with shows on cable,” says tech review website Grounded Reason.
One big advantage: Vudu has no running costs. It’s free until you rent a title.
Your Turn: What video streaming service do you use, and why?
Mike Brassfield (email@example.com) is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. He thinks the best movie on this list is “The Princess Bride,” but he knows you’ve probably seen it already.