Where to Get Free Movie Rentals

Children's Library at St. Louis Central Library
Most public libraries offer free movie rentals.

Deborah O'Brien

Going to the movie theater to see a new release can be fun, but it can be prohibitively expensive. Instead, many people enjoy films at home, on their couches with their popcorn or snacks. However, watching a movie from an on-demand service can be as much as $20 and still hurts the budget. 

There are many ways to avoid paying high fees, either in rental costs or cable subscriptions, to get free movie rentals. Check out these six resources for rentals and streaming services. 


RedBox is a great source for cheap rentals; most films are available for about $1 a day, but it can also be a great source for free rentals. Sign up to receive emails, and you'll get a free rental code on the spot, as well as additional rental codes tucked into the newsletter from time to time. If you rent movies from them regularly, you may also qualify for customer discounts. 

The Library

If you have not been to the library lately, you may be surprised to find out that it is a great resource for free entertainment. Many libraries have thousands of movies in-stock, available for you to rent for free. From new releases to classic dramas, there are hundreds of options for you to enjoy with just a library card. 


Hulu is a paid service, but they do offer a 30-day free trial where you can try out the service and see if it's for you. Since Hulu tends to carry older movies, such as blockbusters from the '90s, you may enjoy it for a few weeks but ultimately decide it's not for you. 


If you have a laptop, tablet or television that can connect to the internet, YouTube can be a great resource for free movies. While some movies are removed due to copyright issues, many older films are available, particularly those in the public domain. Just type in the name of a film you want to watch and "full movie."

While some films will be of poor quality, many will be crystal clear and in high-definition. If you have a fast internet connection and a good laptop or television screen, the appearance can be excellent. 

Amazon Prime

Amazon Prime has many new releases and blockbuster films. They offer a 30-day trial so you can test out their services. During that time, you can watch as many movies as you want. After the 30 days are up, it costs $119 a year to sign up. 

It's important to note that, besides movies, you can get many other perks with an Amazon Prime membership. Other features include free shipping on many items, cloud storage for your documents and photos and free eBooks. 


Netflix has a wealth of content, including the latest movies, classic films and television shows. With new content added every month, there is always something new to watch, from cult favorites to original programming. They offer a 30-day free trial, where you can watch as many shows and movies as you like. Afterward, you can get a subscription for less than $10 a month.