Digital TV Guides

Best digital TV package for films

Best digital TV package for films

Updated: Tuesday 18 January, 2011

By Becca Talbot - becca@consumerchoices.co.uk

If your household watches a lot of films but doesn’t want to spend loads buying or renting DVDs, then you’ll want a digital TV package that offers the latest Hollywood hits, cult classics and family favourites.

All of the big digital TV providers offer options for film enthusiasts - even Freeview, which broadcasts Film4. So working out which package best suits you can be a little confusing.

But this guide should take the stress out of finding the perfect TV and film deal for your household. Read on to discover what each of the providers is offering, then sign-up for a package that offers the films that you really want to watch at an affordable price…

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Films on Virgin Media

Virgin Media (www.virginmedia.com) offers a range of options for those who love to settle down with a good movie.

The channels that are available to you are dependent on the package you subscribe to. In addition, you can add on a number of movie channels for an addition charge each month.

Virgin Media offers a range of options for those who love to settle down with a good movie

Here’s what you get with each package:

  • M+ TV - You’ll get access to Film4, Film4 HD and Movies 24
  • L TV - You’ll get access to Film4, Film4+1, Film4 HD, Movies 24, Movies 24+, True Movies 1 and TCM
  • XL TV - You’ll get access to Film4, Film4+1, Film4 HD, Movies 24, Movies 24+, True Movies 1 and TCM.

Customers on any of these packages can add Sky Movies to their package for an additional cost per month. Sky Movies 1 - which includes Sky Comedy, Family, Classics and Modern Greats - and Sky Movies 2 - which includes Sky Action/Thriller, Sci-Fi/Horror, Indie and Drama - are available separately.

Alternatively, you can get both options together with the Sky Movies Collection - which also offers Sky Movies Premiere.

Virgin Media digital TV packages can be taken without a cable phone line, though cost more each month. Take a look at the packages on offer below to find out more:

Virgin Media TV packages

CompanyPackage NameChannelsBroadbandHome Phone 
TV: M+65 channels including Virgin 1, Sky1, LIVING and many moreNoYes
TV: L100 channels including Virgin 1, Sky1, Comedy Central, Bravo and many moreNoYes
TV: XL160 channels including Virgin 1, Sky1, ESPN, Disney Channel and many moreNoYes

Films on Sky

For the digital TV package with the most movies and the best price, check out Sky (www.Sky.com).

Sky are built with different viewing packs. As standard, everyone gets the Sky Entertainment Pack, which has more than 40 channels, including Sky One, Sky Atlantic, Sky Living, and Sky Arts. Alternatively, you can pay a bit more and get the Sky Entertainment Extra pack, which contains all the channels of the Entertainment Pack, and adds an extra 50 on top.

To get movies, you can then add the Sky Movies Pack. This gives you 12 dedicated movies channels, and at least 5 film premieres a week. Plus there’s an extensive library of films available through the Sky Anytime+ on demand service.

Sky also offers pay per view movies, via its Sky Box Office service. This is a easiest way to catch the latest and greatest home entertainment releases.

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    Films on BT Vision

    Phone and broadband giant BT runs its own TV service, called BT Vision (www.btvision.bt.com). BT’s philospohy is that “if you only watch one film this year, you should only pay for one film this year.”

    This means BT Vision is great for people who only want to watch the occasional movie, without having to pay for a host of films and channels they’ll never watch.

    BT Vision customers get, as standard, the Freeview channels that are available in their area, and a Vision+ set-top box. The Vision+ box lets you rewind and pause “live” TV, and record Freeview channels.

    You can then watch pay-per-view programming including an extensive range of films. Its film library covers:

    • Comedy
    • Drama
    • Action/adventure
    • Romance
    • Family
    • Horror
    • Sci-fi
    • Thriller.

    In addition to the movies and TV rentals available via pay-per-view, you can sign-up to BT’s on-demand service, choosing the “viewing packs” that suit you. Choose from Kids, Music, Vision Sport and Vision Film Club. These subscriptions have no minimum term so you can sign-up for as few or as many months as you like, and you can save by signing up to all four.

    Unfortunately BT Vision is only available to homes that have a subscription BT Total Broadband, so if you haven’t already got BT broadband, you’ll need to sign-up for it. Visit Broadbandchoices.co.uk to find out more, and take a look at the packages below to see what’s on offer:

    Choosing the best provider for you

    Before you sign-up to your chosen digital TV provider, why not check out the best packages for sports or kids or do a postcode search to see what’s available in your area.

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