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Our Opinion: New streaming offer from MRRL

by Gerry Tritz | January 15, 2022 at 4:00 a.m.

What if we told you that you could stream some 6,000 movies/videos from the comfort of your home with no monthly fee?

It's true -- all you need is your library card.

Missouri River Regional Library is expanding their non-book offerings by adding Kanopy, "a company committed to streaming high-quality films that inspire, educate and entertain to libraries around the globe," according to a news release.

We gave Kanopy a spin so we could share our experience with you.

First, it's easy to set up. You can get the app on both iOS and Android devices, but we opted to test it on the website, Getting started was quick and mainly consisted of choosing your local library and typing in your library card number.

Like other streaming services, the videos are organized into categories: newly added movies, newly added documentaries, staff picks, most-watched films, etc. It also offers a large section for kids that's separate from everything else.

Like the setup, streaming videos is a one-click process. The videos pop up in a smaller window on a personal computer, but you can expand it to the full screen. We didn't have issues with the streaming or the picture/audio quality.

The videos have summaries, ratings, run times and the number of stars (out of five) given by users.

For many people, the biggest disappointment of Kanopy might be the offerings. It's not going to replace your streaming services such as Netflix and Disney. There are no current hit movies or TV shows that we saw.

But you can see plenty of popular older movies such as "Westside Story," "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly" "War and Peace," and "The Killing Fields." There are also plenty of foreign movies.

To us, the biggest value in the service is the documentaries. Divided into nine categories, there are fascinating documentaries for every interest.

Kanopy might not be our go-to streaming service, but it will still be a valuable addition to our streaming arsenal. We appreciate MRRL picking up this service for its patrons.

News Tribune

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