Are you a scary movie fan? If your film-watching philosophy is along the lines of “the more blood, the better,” then you may want to consider subscribing to Shudder.
Shudder is a subscription video streaming service that specializes in movies in the thriller, horror and suspense genres.
This AMC Entertainment product has a content library that includes thousands of hours worth of television shows and movies from these categories. It includes content that is exclusive to the service as well as original content produced just for Shudder.
But how big of a scary movie fan do you have to be to make this worth your money? Would you be better off getting your fright fix from a streaming service that offers more than just blood and gore?
These are questions I’m hoping to help you answer with this Team Clark streaming service review.
Table of Contents
For the purposes of this review, I signed up for a free trial of the service and tested it on my own devices.
This review is one of many we conducted as a part of our video streaming series. You can learn more about our strategies for getting the most out of video streaming subscriptions as a live TV alternative here:
What Is Shudder?
Shudder is the video streaming service for the content consumer who enjoys fright in their lives. Produced by AMC Entertainment, the content mix includes thousands of hours of movies and series that are sourced from AMC’s library of content, Shudder’s original content and other movies that are licensed by the platform.
It is a monthly subscription model that offers both a live stream and on-demand consumer experience. You can pay for this service annually to receive a discount on the monthly fee.
How to Watch Shudder
Shudder is accessible through mobile, streaming and web applications. Sign-up is required and you’ll need to pay for a subscription if you want to watch beyond a short free trial period.
How Much Does Shudder Cost?
You can subscribe to Shudder either monthly or annually. If you go for the annual option, you’ll save some money.
Shudder costs $5.99 per month for the monthly subscription, but it comes to only $4.75 per month if you pay $56.99 upfront for an annual subscription.
My suggestion is to spend the $5.99 for your first month to make sure you actually like the content. After that, you can always opt into the year-long agreement to enjoy the lower monthly cost.
Free Trial Offer
There is a seven-day free trial available for all new users, but it comes with a catch.
You must give your credit card number when you sign up, and you’ll have to cancel before the end of the trial, or you’ll end up paying for at least one month’s worth of service.
Given that it’s such a short free trial, you’ll want to be sure that you take action to cancel before the charge is automatically assessed to your account at the end of your free week of content.
Here’s the fine print on that free trial:
“You may cancel at any time during your free trial and will not be charged. To cancel, go to Manage Account and click “Cancel Membership.” There are no refunds or credits for partial months.”
Devices and Apps
Shudder is compatible with the following devices:
- iPhone and iPad
- Android phones
- Apple TV
- Amazon Fire TV
- XBox One
Shudder also has a streaming web player that is accessible through Mac and Windows laptops or desktop computers.
Content Available to Stream on Shudder
If it’s scary, spooky or bloody, there’s a decent chance that it’s on Shudder. The service uses a combination of curated films, TV shows and original content to create a comprehensive horror and thriller experience.
Some of this is AMC Entertainment product, some is original content made for Shudder and yet other shows and movies are licensed content from various sources.
There also is a Shudder TV option, which is a 24/7 live stream of Shudder content that provides a more traditional television viewing experience.
But if you want content on your terms, here is a look at some of your on-demand options.
Popular On-Demand Movies
If you’re looking for some familiar, “name-brand” horror titles to get you started, Shudder has them in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Halloween.
Just a sample of other movies on Shudder:
- The Halloween/Michael Myers series
- House of 1000 Corpses
- The Masque of the Red Death
- Prom Night
- The Maniac Cop series
Popular On-Demand TV Shows
Shudder borrows from AMC’s existing content for on-demand series like James Cameron’s Story of Science Fiction.
Some other TV series include:
- Eli Roth’s History of Horror
- Born to Kill
Original Content and Exclusives
In addition to “Shudder Exclusives,” which are movies or TV shows that appear only on the streaming service, the service also produces some of its own original content.
Here’s a sampling of titles from each:
- Stan Lee’s Lucky Man
- A Discovery of Witches
- True Horror
- Color Out of Space
- Dragula Resurrection
- The Mortuary Collection
- The Cleansing Hour
- Random Acts of Violence
You may be wondering how the user experience with Shudder stacks up compared to other video streaming services. I spent a few hours playing around with different aspects of the service, and I took some notes that could be helpful to you if you’re thinking of subscribing.
Are there Ads?
No, subscribers of Shudder are not subjected to ads, at least not during feature films or series. There are some podcasts available on the service that may include ads.
As you see in the screenshot above, you’re going to have access to a fairly straightforward video player. It lets you move freely through the content without stopping for commercials like you might see on free services.
As you can see from the homepage menu, Shudder presents its content in a pretty standard streaming service format. There are scrolling tiles highlighting the featured content of the day as well as easily searchable categories to help you find the type of content you want quickly.
Shudder breaks things into three basic categories: movies, series and live stream (Shudder TV).
From there, you can sort alphabetically, by genre and sub-genre or by the newest content available in that category.
Tips for Enjoying Shudder
Has some of the available content caught your attention? If so, here are some tips for enjoying it on Shudder:
Customize Your Experience With “My List”
By using the “My List” function, you’ll be able to quickly build yourself a queue of desired content. It will also help Shudder understand the type of content that you like, so you’ll get more appropriate recommendations for new content as you dig deeper into the library.
Read Reviews from Other Shudder Customers
Let’s be honest, Shudder has some deep cuts from the frightful genres, some of which only the most hardcore of fans would have seen under normal circumstances. So I found the user-generated reviews of these movies and series helpful when trying to decide whether I’d find a certain show or movie entertaining.
Utilize the Movie Trailers
When searching through content that I sometimes found to be obscure, I felt like the trailers were a lifeline to help me decide on content to add to my list. As you’ll notice on the screenshot above, there is an option to play the movie trailer right beside the red button that starts the movie.
Final Thoughts on Shudder
Still trying to decide whether or not you should add Shudder to your streaming portfolio? Here are some pros and cons to think over:
Shudder: Pros and Cons
|Free 7-day trial to try it out||Narrow niche content compared to other video streaming services|
|You can trim bill to $4.75 per month by paying annually||Must pay for a year subscription upfront to receive cheapest pricing|
|Good mix of scary movie classics and original content in the library||Not much in the library for those in the mood for something other than fright|
Bottom Line: With all the video streaming services on the market these days, you really need to be a horror movie aficionado to consider a year-round subscription.
While Shudder’s collection of horrors and thrillers is pretty impressive, it’s simply not for everyone. Most streaming customers with an occasional craving for a spooky Friday night are likely better served by checking the horror genre on a broader-ranged streaming service like Netflix or Prime Video.
However, since Shudder is billed on a monthly basis, it could easily be a service worth paying for once or twice a year for things like a Halloween party or “Friday the 13th” movie night.
Do you have experience watching the Shudder streaming service? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!