Independent film distributor Kino Lorber has officially unveiled streaming service Kino Film Collection, available via Prime Video here.

The Kino Film Collection will be launched in the U.S. on the Amazon Service via Prime Video Channels for $5.99 per month. The Collection will feature new Kino releases fresh from theaters, along with hundreds of films from its expansive library of more than 4,000 titles, with many now streaming for the first time.

New 4K restorations of films like Bernardo Bertolucci’s “The Conformist,” Yorgos Lanthimos’ “Dogtooth,” Jafar Panahi’s “Taxi,” Todd Haynes’ “Poison,” Tran Anh Hung’s “The Scent of Green Papaya,” Ana Lily Amirpour’s “A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night,” and Jia Zhangke’s “A Touch of Sin” are among highlights of the first offerings from Kino Film Collection.

Kino canon films like Fritz Lang’s historic “Metropolis,” F.W. Murnau’s “Nosferatu,” Robert Wiene’s “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari,” and Sergei Eisenstein’s “Battleship Potemkin” will all be presented in the best versions available anywhere.

Documentaries “Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story,” “Fire at Sea,” “Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami,” and “Bill Cunningham New York” will also be launched.

Richard Lorber, President and CEO of Kino Lorber, said, “I’m excited about Kino Film Collection as a destination for our newest films fresh from festivals and theaters, as well as newly launched restorations of classics and curated selections from our vast library, many streaming for the first time. Over the last 45 years, we’ve introduced electrifying new films from directors at the vanguard around the world to American audiences, and built a library and brand synonymous with cinematic innovation, distinguished curation, and enduring quality. The Kino Film Collection will be the place to go to find the classics of tomorrow and the best of cinema past.”

The Kino Film Collection will be updated monthly with regular streaming premieres of acclaimed films directly from theaters including “Chile ’76,” “Framing Agnes,” and “The Worst Ones,” alongside curated treasures from the Kino library and cult film selections from the Kino vault to satisfy genre fans. The December streaming premieres include a new 4K restoration of newly-retired filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s “Millennium Mambo,” Chloe Zhao’s “Songs My Brothers Taught Me,” Suzanne Raes’ “Close to Vermeer,” Michel Hazanavicius’ “Final Cut,” Fran Rubel Kuzui’s “Tokyo Pop,” Beth B’s “Two Small Bodies,” and Kleber Mendonça Filho and Juliano Dornelles’ “Bacurau.”

Lisa Schwartz, Chief Revenue Officer for Kino Lorber, will oversee the service. “The creation of Kino Film Collection is the latest example of our continued commitment to independent film and to ensuring our incredible collection remains available for audiences nationwide,” Schwartz also said in a press statement. “Many streaming services are currently undergoing a shift in their content focus and consequently many titles are becoming increasingly difficult to find. Therefore, we felt it was a business imperative to create a dedicated home where our films would be consistently available to film lovers.  This curated collection allows us to highlight our successful new theatrical releases as well as repertory films and beautifully restored library classics.”

“When we went into this year, we saw what was happening in the marketplace with streaming platforms leaning toward more general entertainment fare,” Schwartz also exclusively told IndieWire via a phone interview. “It started to feel like there was an imperative to make sure that for the Kino film lovers and fans — and just film lovers in general — there was a branded destination that was independently provided, meaning we’re not part of a larger corporate entity.”

Schwartz continued, “We have this fantastic library and it would be very difficult to access everything. It’s really just the next evolution of how people can access our films. We wanted to make sure they went into a destination where people could go and enjoy it and get the benefit of the awareness that was created in the theatrical window, in addition to physical media.”

Schwartz noted that there are a “handful” of Kino Lorber titles that are actually in the public domain via rights, but that Kino has the highest-quality version of the restorations available.

New releases from top international festivals will also be curated on the streaming channel via Amazon.

“We go out to all the major festivals, travel around to Sundance and Berlin and Cannes and Toronto and really scour for the best of the best, and work hard to get them out there,” Schwartz said. “We want to make sure that engine continues. These are our titles that we put a lot of tender, loving care into and we want to make sure they are presented in a way that is curatorial and in context, so it’s not in a sea of ‘I don’t know what that title means’ or why it’s there.”

Channels like “thought-provoking documentaries,” “interesting stories,” and “cult favorites” will be available on the platform, as well as promotional tie-ins like the “best of Cannes” that will be a “natural extension” of Kino Lorber.

The price point of $5.99, as Schwartz noted, is less than 50 percent of competitors. “We did that for a few reasons, one of them being these larger streaming platforms are continuing to increase pricing,” she said. “To be accessible, we didn’t want to make it a hardship to add to a Netflix subscription. The other thing we observed was in our theatrical repertoire business, films like ‘The Conformist’ and ‘Nosferatu’ do really well when they play theatrically. Our observation was that they were drawing a really young crowd. The impetus was we needed to create an environment where it’s not just for seasonal Halloween fall availability, but to have a destination for the next generation of film lovers to be able to find this material and get either introduced to it for the first time or fall in love with it all over again.”

Schwartz added, “Amazon does one of the best jobs with subscription services, in my experience. They are a great partner and a great place to start. Of course we’ll continue to other platforms, but starting with Amazon was a great way to kick it off.”

Schwartz summed up, “We’re beyond excited to bring it to the market.”

Check out a preview of Kino Film Collection below.

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