How to Watch Hundreds of Free Movies on YouTube

We lived in the age of movie theaters, then we lived in the age of home video, and now we live in the age of streaming. Like every period in the history of cinema, ours has its advantages and its disadvantages. The quasi-religiosity of the cinephile viewing experience is, arguably, not as well served by clicking on a Youtube video as it is by attending a screening at a grand revival house. But on the whole, we do have the advantage of access, whenever and wherever we like, to a great many films that most of us may have been wholly unable to see just a couple of decades ago — and often, we can watch them for free.

That said, these are still relatively early days for on-demand viewing, and finding out just where to do it isn’t as easy as it could be. That’s why we’ve rounded up this collection of Youtube channels with free movies, which together constitute one big meta-collection of hundreds of films. Among them are numerous black-and-white classics, of course, but also critically acclaimed pictures by international auteurs, rather less critically acclaimed (but nonetheless enjoyable) cult favorites, documentaries on a wide variety of subjects, and even twenty-first-century Hollywood releases.

Which films you can watch will vary, unfortunately, depending on which part of the world you happen to be watching them in. But no matter your location, you should easily be able to find more than a few worthwhile selections on all these channels. One under-appreciated aspect of our streaming age is that, though the number of choices may sometimes overwhelm, it’s never been easier to give a movie a chance. One click may, after all, transport you into a picture that changes the way you experience cinema itself — and if it doesn’t, well, at least the price was right.

If you know of other YouTube channels that legitimately host films online, please add them to the comments section below.

And, for more films, be sure to explore our collection, 4,000+ Free Movies Online: Great Classics, Indies, Noir, Westerns, Documentaries & More

Related Content 

60 Free Film Noir Movies

Watch 3,000+ Films Free Online from the National Film Board of Canada

Watch 30+ Exceptional Short Films for Free in The New Yorker’s Online Screening Room

Watch More Than 400 Classic Korean Films Free Online Thanks to the Korean Film Archive

Watch 70 Movies in HD from Famed Russian Studio Mosfilm: Classic Films, Beloved Comedies, Tarkovsky, Kurosawa & More

Kino Lorber Puts Online 50 Free Films: Watch Classics by Jean-Luc Godard, Derek Jarman, Taika Waititi & Other Major Filmmakers

Charade, the Best Hitchcock Film Hitchcock Never Made: Stars Cary Grant & Audrey Hepburn

Watch Free Cult Films by Stanley Kubrick, Fritz Lang, Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi & More on the New Kino Cult Streaming Service

Based in Seoul, Colin Marshall writes and broadcasts on cities, language, and culture. His projects include the Substack newsletter Books on Cities, the book The Stateless City: a Walk through 21st-Century Los Angeles and the video series The City in Cinema. Follow him on Twitter at @colinmarshall or on Facebook.

by | Permalink | Comments (5) |

Support Open Culture

We’re hoping to rely on our loyal readers rather than erratic ads. To support Open Culture’s educational mission, please consider making a donation. We accept PayPal, Venmo (@openculture), Patreon and Crypto! Please find all options here. We thank you!

Comments (5)
You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.
  • Monica Hoffman says:

    DominioPublico on YouTube features many old movies.

  • Nico says:

    Any resources for Chinese film specifically wuxia?

  • Roscoe Lotus says:

    One of my all-time favorite movies, “A Thousand Clowns”, is on the YT. Jason Robards, William Daniels, Barbara Harris, Gene Saks, and a young Barry Gordon…

  • Glory Thomas says:

    I watch YouTube,but if you put in an honest opinion,they will refuse to edit it,& so many times I see foul words & YouTube does nothing, because they would rather read a foul word then read the truth.And 99.9 percent they have a movie on that their mouth is not going with the words.Or the movie repeats & repeats a sequence of the movie,& again YouTube doesn’t get into it,but because they are into foul language following what Satan is telling YouTube and I am sure you will not print these message of mine.

  • Khonsu says:

    Glory, this is a site dedicated to spreading and sharing content and culture, not suppressing it. Deciding you find something offensive and using that as a reason to censor or deny access to others runs contrary to the very ethos of this site. The Bible itself is filled with rape, murder, genocide, oppression, slavery, all things I find more offensive (and actually harmful) than a “foul word,” but whether I believed in it or not, I wouldn’t seek to ban it because some parts make me uncomfortable. I’m free to not read it, or tell others not to, or write my own book to convince others why it’s so wrong, but broad censorship like you’re asking for lessens our culture by redacting anything even slightly threatening. Do you think Jesus made the Pharisees and the Romans comfortable with the words he preached?

Leave a Reply

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.