Welcome to Our Virtual Movie Palace!

 

We’re excited to be able to offer you a curated selection of great arthouse films that you can watch safely from your homes. By renting these films through our website, you directly support our two historic theaters and staff and help ensure that the Michigan Theater Foundation will continue to bring storytelling and the arts to our community into the future. 

 

Please Note: Due to our arrangements with our distributor partners, we are only able to offer member discount pricing for purchases that use the MTF’s AgileLink streaming platform. Unfortunately, at this time we are unable to provide free Tuesday virtual movies for Premium Members. 

Thank you Sesi Maza

New This Week

Your purchase of tickets to these films directly benefits the Michigan Theater Foundation and our staff. Thank you for your support!

Collective

COLLECTIVE is a gripping, real-time docu-thriller that follows a heroic team of journalists as they expose shocking corruption in the Romanian national health-care system.

Crock of Gold

‘CROCK OF GOLD’ is the definitive feature documentary on Irish musical icon, Shane MacGowan, exploring the wild and roving life of Ireland’s most beloved punk poet.

Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale

In the depths of the Korvatunturi mountains, 486 meters deep, lies the closest ever guarded secret of Christmas. The time has come to dig it up. This Christmas everyone will believe in Santa Claus.

Coming Soon

Your purchase of tickets to these films directly benefits the Michigan Theater Foundation and our staff. Thank you for your support!

The Library That Dolly Built

Opens Friday, December 11

Filmmakers Abby Bowers and Nick Geidner examine the history, impact and future of America’s largest nongovernmental children’s literacy program.

Okko's Inn

Available Free for all patrons – Saturday, December 19 – One Day Only!

Thank you to our sponsor Japanese Business Society of Detroit

After losing her parents in a car accident, Okko starts living in the countryside with her grandmother who runs a traditional Japanese inn. While she prepares to be the next owner of the inn, Okko can somehow see friendly ghosts.

**AgileLink title. Member/Customer Login required.

Ending soon

Catch these films streaming before they’re gone.

Welcome to Commie High

Available through Friday, December 4

Welcome to Commie High explores an experiment in public education—Community High School – in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

**AgileLink title. Member discount pricing applies.

Stream for under $10!

Your purchase of tickets to these films directly benefit the Michigan Theater Foundation and our staff. Thank you for your support!

CREEM

Ripping back the curtain on legendary rock rag CREEM Magazine’s wild and disruptive newsroom; a dysfunctional band of unruly outsiders who weren’t all that different from the artists they covered.

Gordon Lightfoot: If You Could Read My MInd

An exploration of the career, music, and influence of legendary Canadian musical icon Gordon Lightfoot, from his evolution from Christian choirboy to troubled troubadour to international star and beloved Canadian icon.

Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy

Filmmaker Elizabeth Carroll examines the vibrant and unconventional life of Diana Kennedy, widely regarded as the world’s leading expert on Mexican cuisine.

Desert One

From Two-time Academy Award-winning filmmaker, Barbara Kopple, Desert One tells the incredible tale of America’s secret mission to free the hostages of the 1979 Iranian revolution, which has been called “the most audacious, difficult, complicated, rescue mission ever attempted.”

The Motions of Stillness

Free for all members!

An MTF Original! Watch this original film and score from Jared Van Eck, Technical Director, and local musician. 

Capital in the Twenty-First Century

 Assembing accessible pop-culture references coupled with interviews of some of the world’s most influential experts delivering an insightful and empowering journey through the past and into our future.

Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President

Part-rockumentary, part-presidential portrait, this doc traces how music helped propel Jimmy Carter to the White House, and the significant role that music has played in President Carter’s life and work.

RBG

An intimate portrait of an unlikely rock star: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. With unprecedented access, the filmmakers explore how her early legal battles changed the world for women. 50% of all purchases will be donated to the ACLU Women’s Rights Project, which was co-founded by Justice Ginsburg in 1972. 

Tommaso

Director Abel Ferrara reunites with his frequent lead Willem Dafoe, who delivers a career-best performance as the title character, an older American expat living in Rome with his young wife and their daughter.

Now Available

Your purchase of tickets to these films directly benefits the Michigan Theater Foundation and our staff. Thank you for your support!

Zappa

The first all-access documentary on the life and times of Frank Zappa.

Jingle Bell Rocks!

An exclusive backstage pass into a fascinating underground world of alternative Christmas music. Starring an eclectic cast of characters – The Flaming Lips, Run DMC, John Waters – plus two dozen amazing & original songs, JINGLE BELL ROCKS! is a cinematic sleight ride into the strange and sublime universe of alternative Christmas music.

Coded Bias

An exploration of the fallout of MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini’s startling discovery of racial bias in facial recognition algorithms.

Polish Film Festival 2020_1080

Martin Eden

After Martin Eden meets Elena, he tries to achieve a place among the literary elite through self-education.

Oliver Sacks: His Own Life

 NYTimes Critic’s Pick! Renowned neurologist and literary giant Oliver Sacks is posthumously celebrated in this profound, highly engaging, deeply personal memoir by Ric Burns. Sacks was a fearless explorer of unknown mental worlds who helped redefine our understanding of the brain and mind, the diversity of human experience, and our shared humanity.

Aggie

Aggie explores the nexus of art, race, and justice through the story of art collector and philanthropist Agnes “Aggie” Gund’s life. Emmy-nominated director Catherine Gund captures honest conversations between Aggie and renowned artists, curatorial peers, and her grandchildren to craft an intimate portrait of her mother.

Once Upon A River

Based on Michigander Bonnie Jo Campbell’s novel of the same name, this “midwestern gothic Americana story” tells the story of a young Native American woman’s odyssey on the Stark River, which introduces her to a world filled with wonders and dangers.

The Artist's Wife

Claire Smythson, wife of the renowned abstract artist Richard Smythson, is plunged into a late-life crisis when her husband is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and is in danger of not completing the paintings for his final show.

John Lewis: Good Trouble

Using interviews and rare archival footage, John Lewis: Good Trouble chronicles Lewis’ 60-plus years of social activism and legislative action on civil rights, voting rights, gun control, health-care reform and immigration.

We Are Little Zombies

When four young orphans first meet, their parents’ are dead and yet none of them can shed a tear. They are like zombies. With no family, no future and no way to move forward, the young teens decide to start a rock band… and conquer the world.

Made in Bangladesh

100% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes! Ugly walls of resistance arise when a Dhaka woman attempts to organize her garment factory co-workers.

The Fight

At this defining moment in American history, THE FIGHT follows a scrappy team of heroic ACLU lawyers in an electrifying battle over abortion rights, immigrant rights, LGBTQ rights and voting rights.

Meeting the Beatles in India

In 1968 the Beatles travel to Rishikesh, India, to study transcendental meditation with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

Jazz on a Summer's Day - New 4K Restoration!

Legendary Photographer Bert Stern’s Groundbreaking Concert Documentary Jazz on A Summer’s Day is considered one of the most extraordinary and possibly the “best feature-length jazz concert movie ever made.” See its sparkling new 4K restoration.

Amulet

Writer and director Romola Garai explores the story of Tomaz, a haunted ex soldier from an unnamed foreign conflict, living in strained circumstances in London. 

Mama Africa: Miriam Makeba

The story of Miriam Makeba, a South African singer and crusader against apartheid, with a look at her life, career, and activism through the lens of archival footage.

Epicentro

The latest documentary from Oscar®-nominated director Hubert Sauper is an immersive portrait of «utopian» Cuba and its resilient people.

2020 Sundance Shorts Tour

A 80-minute theatrical program of 6 short films selected from this year’s Festival that is widely considered the premier American showcase for short films and the launchpad for many now-prominent independent filmmakers.

I Used To Go Here

Following the launch of her new novel, 35-year-old writer Kate Conklin (Gillian Jacobs) is invited to speak at her alma mater by her mentor and former professor (Jemaine Clement).

**AgileLink title. Member discount pricing applies.

Stage: The Culinary Internship

A group of interns do a nine-month apprenticeship at one of the best restaurants in the world, Mugaritz.

**AgileLink title. Member discount pricing applies.

Kinshasa Makambo

A Cinetopia 2019 selection!

Congolese director Dieudo Hamadi exposes the political crisis in the Congo through the stories of three young political activists.

Space Dogs

The story of Laika, the first dog in space. Remarkable archival footage recounts the story of her selection, and directors Elsa Kremser and Levin Peter powerfully document the lives of her descendants, offering insight not only into the past and space travel, but also life today on earth.

**AgileLink title. Member discount pricing applies.

Love & Busking (Fiction & Other Realities)

2019 Cinetopia Audience Favorite!

Bobby Choy, a.k.a. singer-songwriter Big Phony, makes his directorial debut with this intimate semi-biographical musical drama.

**AgileLink title. Member discount pricing applies.

The Last Tree

A semi-autobiographical story of Femi (as a child played by newcomer Tai Golding), a British boy of Nigerian heritage who, after being fostered in rural Lincolnshire, moves to inner-city London to live with his birth mother.

Pioneers of Queer Cinema

Celebrate Pride Month with this newly restored trio of classics from the early days of queer cinema, each far ahead of its time. Rent each film separately, or purchase a pass for all three for $15.00!

Black Voices, Black Filmmakers

Black Lives Matter. We stand in solidarity with everyone advocating for justice, truth and equity. Here is a list of movies you can watch from home from strong, Black voices.

Online Film Education Classes

Your purchase of tickets to these film education classes directly benefits the Michigan Theater Foundation and our staff. Thank you for your support! Each class is $20 to rent and $15 to rent for MTF Members

Movies 101: Narrative Structure

While we often expect the action of films to unfold in chronological order, there are many other possibilities. We look at various components of film narrative and how they can be manipulated to create anticipation, tension, and resolution. Our examples will be drawn from Casablanca, Bonnie & Clyde, L’Avventura and (500) Days of Summer.

Movies 101: Sound

In the beginning, movies only had sound in the form of musical accompaniment provided in the theater. Since then, recorded sound has become an indispensable part of viewing. We look at how music, speech, and sound effects can be used to add meaning to the images on the screen. Our examples will be drawn from Casablanca, The Adventures of Robin Hood, Vertigo and The Passenger

 

Movies 101: Editing

Editing is the process by which individual shots are joined together. We will explore several different ways that this unique cinematic device can be used including “continuity editing,” “parallel editing,” “analytical editing,” and “montage.” Our examples will be drawn from Casablanca, The Battleship Potemkin, Psycho, and Manhattan

 

Movies 101: Mise-en-Scene

Mise-en-Scene is a term that refers to everything in the implied world of the film. This includes people, costumes, sets, props, lighting, some sound, color and the way these elements are viewed through the camera’s lenses as it moves about. We will look at various approaches to mise-en-scene including selections from Casablanca, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Double Indemnity, Saving Private Ryan, and Mr. Turner

Specialty Content

Penny Stamps Lecture Series

Weekly, free streams of previous Penny Stamps lectures every Friday on Detroit Public Television website.

Arab Film Series Online

Emerging from the Arab Film Festival, the Arab Film Series Online brings a wide range of new and classic films each week for free. 

MET Opera Streams

A different, daily encore presentation from the MET Opera is available for free on their website.