With movie theaters shuttered all over the country due to coronavirus, companies are letting audiences stream films at home in order to help their local institutions.

Enter the era of “virtual cinema,” a new idea that has various places streaming foreign films, arthouse fare and films that didn’t get a shot at an honest-to-goodness wide theatrical releases. When you buy a “ticket” – or rent the movie – it benefits a struggling industry that’s been crippled by stay-at-home orders around the country but with an audience that still needs its film fix.

Here are six films you can stream right now to benefit specific theaters or one of your own choosing. (Also be sure to check out your favorite theater’s website to find more virtual-screening options, such as Alamo Drafthouse’s Terror Tuesday and Weird Wednesday lineups.)


A film-festival favorite last year – and the 2019 Cannes Jury Prize winner – the movie mashes up sci-fi and satire in a tale of a Brazilian village in the near future where the residents finds their locale disappeared from maps. As if the fly-bys from a UFO-shaped drone aren’t disconcerting enough, the townsfolk also have to fight off a bunch of armed mercenaries who show up.

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