Are Streaming Services Really Taking Over The Movie Industry?


Kierston Robicheaux

Since March, The Boerne AMC Theater sits empty as it has been closed due to the impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Even though some theaters are opening up, Boerne AMC is still closed with no news of when it will open up.

Because students have been stuck in quarantine since March, students watched more movies and TV shows on streaming services at home rather than in theaters because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Streaming services such as Netflix and Disney Plus fill the need for new content with the release of new original movies and shows. 

Over quarantine many people, especially teens, had more time than what to do with. Many used that time to catch up on shows and movies they weren’t able to see before quarantine. Since COVID-19 temporarily closed many theaters, streaming services became the primary viewing source. 

“I definitely watch a lot of Netflix. I’m definitely a big fan of All American and Outer Banks completely,” junior Ana Sofia Ayala said.

Some are concerned that movie theaters could become obsolete if movies continue to premiere on streaming services. The movie theater industry has had profits plummet because they can’t stay open due to safety concerns in these troubled times. There is a fear that movie theaters will never be the same or will just go away with technology becoming the main source of entertainment.

“I think that because of quarantine a lot of people have moved to streaming services,” senior Erin McKeon said. “A lot of movie theaters have shut down but some are still working and I think some will still go (to the movies).”

 Streaming services continue to release new content only available through a subscription. For example, the Tony Award-winning musical, Hamilton, hit a resurgence among teens after a taping of it was released exclusively on Disney+. Disney wasn’t the only company who began to do this. For example, Netflix released several original movies during quarantine such as The Kissing Booth 2 and Work It.

“I think streaming services have been popularized in the last few years. And now it’s more common for someone to have Netflix than it is cable. Streaming services act as a cheaper version and, because of that, are more accessible. Why go to a movie when you could wait to see it in the comfort of your own home?” junior Mackenzie Mostaffa said.

With the pandemic, you might not even have to wait for it to go from the theater to streaming services. Furthermore, there are some students who like the privacy of their own homes better than a movie theater. However, going to the movies is an experience that no amount of movie watching at home can replace. 

“Big releases like Avengers Endgame brought a huge crowd. I saw it in the theater,” junior Rory McCrum said. “People don’t like to wait for the movie to come on a streaming service. When a new movie comes out I want to see it, streaming services can take up to a year to get a move, or never.”

“Our generation gravitates toward streaming services because they are convenient,” McCrum said. “But I don’t think movie theater culture will disappear.”