Classic Cinema Online Review

My Thoughts on Classic Cinema Online, a Free Movie & TV Show Streaming Service

Screenshot of the movie The Iron Mask from Classic Cinema Online
The Movie "The Iron Mask". © Classic Cinema Online

Classic Cinema Online lets you stream free movies, particularly classics, such as documentaries, and films in other popular genres. There's also a handful of free TV shows available.

Below is my review of Classic Cinema Online. Keep reading to find out about advertisements, the quality of the films, and some of the genres that are offered, among other things. 

Movies & Shows Can't Be Filtered or Sorted

Classic Cinema Online's movies are separated into three categories: Movie Billboards, Serials, and Silent Films.

This is where you'll find full length films, TV shows, and, of course, silent films, respectively.

What I like about this setup is that it's easy to find full length musicals, documentaries, and comedies, among other genres, while also having access to sci-fi, crime, and western TV shows in nearly the same place on the website.

Some categories also have subsections, such as Crime and Action under the Drama category.

Any TV show you select will tell you how many full length episodes are available, which I appreciate. Though one thing I don't like about the lists of videos is that you can't filter them by popularity, title, date added, etc. like you can with most other movie streaming sites.

Older Movies Means Lower Quality

All of the films at Classic Cinema Online were released many years ago, so the video quality is normally rather low. Plus, most of the movies are in black and white, which may make them appear even lower in quality.

Most of the films I tested out where 100% watchable, but others were very dark, and much worse when in full screen mode.

Classic Cinema Online's Player Options

Most of the movies at Classic Cinema Online have the same player as the one on YouTube, but others may be slightly different. Some films may have a subtitle option or quality adjuster, but all of them have a full screen button and regular volume and playback control.

Classic Cinema Online also lets you download movies for free, in some instances, by having a Download FREE! button above the video that takes you to Internet Archive to download the film. Other movies may instead have a Purchase on DVD link where you must pay for the film if you wish to have it in physical form.

I Didn't Find any Advertisements

I tested 5 movies at Classic Cinema Online, and none of them showed any advertisements or in-video commercials.

It's great that this is the case for the videos here, because similar movie streaming websites, such as Crackle, and myLifetime, show lots of advertisements.

My Video Buffering Experience with Classic Cinema Online

Because movies found on Classic Cinema Online are actually gathered from YouTube, my buffering experience is the same as it is with watching movies from YouTube.

Whether I was fast forwarding or starting a movie for the first time, I didn't notice any unnecessary pausing or long waiting periods while videos buffered, which is much appreciated.

It's important to note that buffering will be more prevalent for someone who has a slow computer or network connection.

Mobile Website, But No Mobile App

It's too bad there isn't a mobile application for Classic Cinema Online because this means you don't have an easy way to access the films from a device other than your computer.

With that being said, you are able to open the website on a phone or tablet using the mobile-optimized version of the site. Since Classic Cinema Online gets its movies from YouTube, and YouTube's films are normally playable on any smartphone or tablet, you can most likely watch every film in this way.

Personally, I'd prefer a dedicated app for watching films, like there is with Viewster, Yidio, SnagFilms, Popcornflix, and Watch Documentary, but a mobile version of the desktop site seems good enough.

Classic Cinema Online: Final Thoughts

You have to have a desire to watch old movies to find the quality acceptable, but I think Classic Cinema Online is a nice place to do so.

The movies I tested loaded nicely, displayed zero commercials, and some of them could even be downloaded, which is much more than similar streaming websites offer.

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