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.

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Comments (5)
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  • 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?

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