Arrow Video announced the launch of ARROW, a new streaming video subscription service that features cult classics and popular horror films, just in time for Halloween. Launched October 1, ARROW came to life in the United States and Canada with a host of movies personally curated by members of the ARROW team. ARROW anticipates a 2021 rollout in the United Kingdom. Films available at launch include the services “Shocktober 31” featuring horror classics like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Children of the Corn, Deep Red and Beyond the Door.
Following a 30-day free trial, enamored viewers of the cult movie streaming service can subscribe for $4.99 a month or $49.99 a year. At launch, the service is available on iOS, tvOS, Android, Fire TV devices, Roku devices, Chromecast and on web browsers at Arrow-Player.com.
Created collection of content
“ARROW will also be home to an ever-growing collection of interviews, documentaries and additional extras, newly created just for the service and from our archives. The service will be updated regularly with fresh content, new curation focuses and never-before-seen content, all hand-picked by the ARROW team. We are here to bring you the best of what you know us for and so much more,” said the ARROW team in a September 29 news release.
The following films were available when the cult movie streaming service premiered last week:
- The Deeper You Dig
- The Hatred
- Cold Light of Day
- The Herschell Gordon Lewis Feast including Blood Feast, How to Make a Doll, The Wizard of Gore, Scum of the Earth, Color Me Blood Red, Something Weird, The Gruesome Twosome, A Taste of Blood, She-Devil on Wheels, Two Thousand Maniacs, Moonshine Mountain, Just for the Hell of It, This Stuff’ll Kill Ya, and The Gore Gore Girls
- Clive Barker’s Hellraiser 1 & 2
- Ringu, the complete collection
- Gamera, thecomplete series
Picks from filmmaker Edgar Wright
Filmmaker Edgar Wright curated this list of films which are also available on ARROW (editor’s note: duplicates listed above have been removed from Wright’s list):
- Blood and Black Lace
- Death Walks at Midnight
- Death Walks on High Heels
- Deep Red
- Don’t Torture A Duckling
- Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Inferno
- Le Plaisir
- The Cat o’ Nine Tails
- The Crazies
- The Fifth Cord
- The Forbidden Photos of a Lady Above Suspicion
- The Stuff
- What Have You Done To Solange?
Tooled Up and Midnight Movies
Another bloody category ARROW calls “Tooled Up” includes films that involve power tools and blood splatters. The cult movie streaming service will feature the following:
- The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
- Microwave Massacre
- The Driller Killer
- Edge of the Axe
- Blood Rage
- The Wizard of Gore
- Doom Asylum
- Why Don’t You Just Die!
- The Mutilator
- The Gore Gore Girls
- White Fire
Midnight Movies is another fun category that includes “restored low-budget exploitations” like Story of Sin, The Swinging Cheerleaders, Vampyres, Deadbeat at Dawn and The Coming of Sin.
Competitor Shudder hits 1M subscribers
The launch of ARROW comes a week after rival service Shudder, owned by AMC Networks, hit 1 million subscribers. Focused on horror, suspense and thriller genres, Shudder launched in 2015, but didn’t really take off until last fall when the service debuted original programming including Creepshow, Room, The Beach House, Z and Revenge. AMC Networks said this content “turbocharged” the service’s growth.
“Our relentless focus on quality programming, innovative content and finding the best up-and-coming creators has enabled Shudder to break out in the crowded world of subscription services. Shudder’s success comes as our other targeted SVOD services—Acorn TV, Sundance Now and UMC—continue their strong subscriber growth momentum by super-serving passionate fans with the content they love the most,” said Miguel Penella, AMC Networks SVOD president in a September 22 news release.
Shudder offers a seven-day free trial and ad-free monthly and annual plans, starting at $4.75 a month. It is available on a variety of platforms including mobile apps, Roku, Fire TV, Apple TV, Xbox and Amazon Prime, among others.
Based on Shudder’s experience, it seems there is, indeed, a large audience craving suspense, thriller, horror and cult classic films. ARROW will be a direct competitor to Shudder, but it seems there are some variances in content and packages. Shudder, for example, offers original programming. It looks like ARROW plans to do that, but their plans are vague at the outset of the new service. There are also slight differences in the packages (pricing, free trials and ad-free), but those may not be significant enough for an audience who is really focused on content.
With Halloween just weeks away, and people stuck at home during the pandemic, this is an ideal time to launch a new SVOD service and to test its popularity with subscribers. Election season is a bit of a horror show anyway. Why not turn off the television and escape into another world instead?