(Pocket-lint) - Amazon offers a new hub, called Prime Video Cinema, that allows you to stream movies originally intended to get a worldwide release.

There's no denying the pandemic has changed how we watch theatrical releases. With cinemas closed around the globe, many studios have been forced to premiere their big-budget films on streaming platforms, which means you don't have to venture out to your neighborhood theatre to watch this year's summery popcorn hits or Oscars contenders. But you do have to be willing to shell out to watch from the comfort of home.

Here's what you need to know about Prime Video Cinema and how you can use it to rent or buy in-theatre films.

What is Amazon Prime Video Cinema?

Prime Video Cinema is a Prime Video hub that lets you find new "theatrical" releases to rent or buy.

You can access the Prime Video  streaming service on Fire TV devices, iOS and Android devices, gaming consoles, smart TVs, and the web. It offers thousands of movies, TV shows, originals, and other titles, some of which are free for Amazon Prime subscribers to watch. Theatrical releases, however, typically cost extra, as studios still need to generate revenue from their productions affected by the pandemic.

Prime Video Cinema titles can be rented or purchased through the Amazon website or through the Prime Video app on supported devices.

How does Prime Video Cinema work?

It's pretty simple to find Prime Video Cinema titles. Fire up Prime Video on your device, or go to this Prime Video page here, and look for titles labeled as "in-theatre purchase" or "in-theatre rental". Simply select it and purchase or rent it like normal. The payment information associated with your Amazon account will be charged. Check out Amazon's FAQ page for more details. Here's a step-by-step guide, too:

  1. Browse the catalog on the Amazon website, in the Prime Video app, or use the search feature to find a specific title.
  2. On the title's product page, you are shown available purchase options.
  3. Buying a title adds it to "My Stuff" permanently. Renting a title will add it there for a limited period.
  4. Select the option to Buy or Rent as applicable. (Selecting More purchase options presents playback quality options).
  5. If you have set parental controls, you may be prompted to enter your PIN to complete the purchase.

Rented titles stay in your video library for 30 days from the date of the rental. However, once you press play on the rented title, you have at minimum 48 hours to watch it. Some titles have longer viewing periods, Amazon said.

How much are Prime Video Cinema movies?

The cost per title depends. We've seen purchases for in-theatres movies range from $9.99 to $19.99, while rentals tend to cost $4.99 to $5.99.

What's available in Prime Video Cinema?

You should just check out the catalogue here. You can find the hub by clicking on the "Rent or buy" tab on the Prime Video website - it should be the top category on the page. Right now, we see titles to purchase like Guest House as well as rentals like The Tax Collector and Vanished.

Are these movies also in theatres?

If cinemas are open in your country, in-theatre titles available in Prime Video Cinema may be available at your local theatre. It's best to check yourself. Also, explore other platforms like Roku and Google Play Store and Apple, as they too offer in-theatre purchases and rentals.

Writing by Maggie Tillman. Editing by Stuart Miles.
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