Starz review

Starz highlights

  • Starting at $8.99/mo.
  • Available as a standalone service or as an add-on to many top streaming services
  • Start a 7-day free trial

Starz review

If you’re in the market for a premium video streaming service, Starz hosts a wealth of on-demand movies and new TV episodes to choose from. The service also creates its own original series and provides live TV through its platform.

Starz first launched way back in February 1994 as Starz!, a cable network operated by TCIO and Liberty Media. It was originally part of a seven-channel multiplex and has always been a resource for recently released feature movies. Entertainment company, Lionsgate, purchased Starz for $4.4 billion in December 2016. It now provides 12 multiplex channels, including six 24-hour services: Starz, Starz Cinema, Starz Comedy, Starz Edge, Starz in Black and Starz Kids and Family, with access dependent on the user’s service provider.

The Starz app and subscription service launched in April 2016 to compete with over-the-top media services HBO NOW and Showtime and to appeal to people who didn’t have a cable or TV package. The service is also available in subscriptions through other streaming services like Amazon Prime Video and Hulu.

Why Starz may be the right streaming service for you

Starz is a good streaming option for people who want a wide choice of movies and early access to their favorite TV shows. It offers a rich mix of on-demand movies, largely thanks to Lionsgate. Starz also has exclusive first-run film licensing deals in place with Sony Pictures, Columbia and TriStar Pictures, which ensures subscribers get early access to plenty of top Hollywood movies. 

Starz is a great option for anyone with an existing video streaming subscription looking to enhance their experience with an even wider choice of movies and shows.

Compare Starz packages and pricing

We took a look at the cost of subscribing to Starz, either directly through the service or by purchasing it as an add-on through a third-party provider. A standard Starz subscription through the service costs $8.99/mo., but prices differ when it’s bought as an add-on from other video streaming platforms. Starz offers 12 channels to its users, but the number of channels differs per agreements with other providers.

Here’s a look at the different Starz packages across service providers:

StarzAmazon Prime VideoAT&T TV NOWHuluSling TV BlueSling TV OrangeRoku Ultra
Starting monthly price$8.99/mo.$8.99/mo.$55/mo.$5.99/mo$30/mo$30/moN/A
Price of Starz add-on N/A$8.99/mo$11/mo.$8.99/mo$9/mo.$9/mo.$8.99/mo.
Total number of shows/movies 1,160 movies and shows 23,000+ movies and shows45+ channels 43,000+ episodes and 2,500+ films45+ channels30+ channels10,000+ movies, shows and news channels
Number of simultaneous streams 433231N/A
Free trial length 7 days30 days7 days7 daysNoneNoneNone
Original shows and movies YesYesNoYes , with plan upgradeNoNoNo
Ad-free optionYesNoNoYes, with a plan upgradeNoNoYes

Starz bundles, deals and free trials

When it comes to getting great deals and bundles on Starz, it’s important to check the services that carry Starz as an add-on. For instance, Sling TV is currently offering a great limited-time deal on Starz and other premium channels when you sign up for a Sling plan. If you’re not totally sure you’re ready to sign up, Starz, and most services that offer it, usually give new subscribers a free trial.

Sign up for Sling TV to save on Starz and more

For a limited time, when you sign up for a Sling plan, get $10 off your subscription plus access to SHOWTIME, Starz and Epix for one month with no additional charge. You should know that unless you cancel your Sling subscription, you’ll be billed the regular monthly fee of $30 after your one month is up.

Start watching with a 7-day free trial

Enjoy a 7-day free trial when you sign up through the Starz website. Check Hulu, Amazon Prime Video and AT&T TV NOW websites to sign up for a Starz free trial through their services.

Device compatibility

The Starz streaming service is available across multiple platforms and devices, including:

Pro tip: Use our list of the best video streaming devices in 2020 to find the best device for you.

Starz features

We dug into Starz to explore the key features users can expect from the service. Features will vary depending on where the subscription is purchased. 

New content discovery

Starz presents original content front and center on its website and apps, meaning it’s almost impossible not to find the latest new shows available on the platform.

Four simultaneous streams

Starz ups the ante when it comes to the number of screens you can watch on at the same time. With four simultaneous streams, everyone on your account can watch the content they want, when they want.

Library layout

The Starz homepage is simple to navigate with eye-catching bold tiles that make it easy to find new content. Clicking on the Browse button leads users to a fresh page that highlights Starz’s original content, provides a full list of content categories and offers the option to explore all the movies and shows available on the platform.

High-quality streaming

Starz provides high-quality video streaming for users of its standalone service. It consistently provides HD programs across all devices and videos load quickly and smoothly. Video quality differs for users that purchase the service through a third-party provider.

Track content

Starz’s My List section organizes all the content a user has downloaded, shows they’re currently watching and items saved for the future in one place.

What to watch on Starz

When it comes to top movies and shows, Starz delivers on the classics and best-ofs in any category. Where the service really shines is its selection of quality movies.

Shows and movies

Movies

Some of the best classic movies on Starz are Back To The Future, E.T. and Forrest Gump as well as films like Apollo 13, Good Will Hunting and Schindler’s List.

If you’re more in the mood to laugh, some of the best comedies available include Simon Pegg and Nick Frost’s crime caper Hot Fuzz, slapstick classic Hot Shots! starring Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson and the Danny Glover film Lethal Weapon.

Starz has collated a collection of movies by the world’s best film creators in its Top Directors category. The list includes movies directed by Baz Luhrmann (Romeo & Juliet), Ethan and Joel Cohen (Burn After Reading), Martin Scorsese (Hugo), Quentin Tarantino (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood) and many more. 

There’s also a curated list of movies starring Hollywood’s finest actors, including Al Pacino (Scarface), Denzel Washington (The Bone Collector), Samuel L Jackson (Changing Lanes), Sylvester Stallone (Rocky Balboa) and Tom Cruise (Vanilla Sky).

Shows

Starz is also home to plenty of binge-worthy TV shows such as fantasy drama American Gods, based on the Neil Gaiman novel, and Idris Elba’s iconic portrayal of London detective Luther. Starz original series include historical drama Outlander, crime drama Power, which was co-created by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and legal and political thriller The Girlfriend Experience, which is based on the 2009 movie of the same name.

Our hot take

Starz is a great streaming service for movie lovers with its library of Hollywood hits and early access to new content from leading film houses. It also features a growing arsenal of good original shows to discover. Starz may not have the versatility of some other providers, but as a niche premium service, it’s an increasingly interesting option in a busy video streaming market.

Rob Latham

Rob Latham is a writer focused on technology, music, entertainment and sports. He is particularly passionate about the role that technology plays in improving peoples’ lives and helping businesses to work more effectively. He’s written marketing content for global B2B technology brands and start-ups, founded his own music blog and is a regular contributor to soccer publications. His professional background is in content marketing, public relations and journalism, and he has a Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism.