Tubi TV

Website review by
Leslie Crenna, Common Sense Media
Tubi TV Website Poster Image
Mostly grown-up streaming site has a few kid options, ads.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 1 review

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this website.

Educational Value

Kids can learn about foreign-film topics and treatments, video-based exercise routines, improv and cooking techniques, and the myriad lessons taught via video storytelling, such as empathy and respect for others. Younger kids might also gain exposure to age-inappropriate material if left to browse on their own. Tubi TV offers up free entertainment as well as quality titles older kids might not encounter elsewhere, all subsidized by regular advertising, but for younger kids, the risk posed by too-mature material is ever present.

Positive Messages

Each movie is its own world of messages: some positive, others not so much. The Kids and Family section is small compared to adult-oriented offerings, and many other titles rated for adults carry less-than-positive messages for kids.

Violence

Action, horror, gun violence, and sexual violence are displayed via some of the usual suspects such as Total Recall and other not-so-usual suspects (Penthouse Playboys).

Sex

Because of the variety of titles, most of which are not for kids, there's the opportunity to see sexuality depicted on-screen. There are plenty of unrated and R-rated movies, plus TV-Mature-rated shows.

Language

Cursing found in adult-rated titles as well TV-14 comedy selections.

Consumerism

Video ads interrupt features every 10 minutes. Paid accounts referred to in the site's terms don't seem to exist, so there's no way to avoid the ads. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Some titles address drug and alcohol issues with humor and authenticity, while others depict graphic scenes of addiction with a range of substances and violent negative impacts.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Tubi TV is a streaming-movie and -TV series site that runs ads every 10 minutes or so during showings. The Kids and Family section has 60 titles, and the remainder of the site carries more adult-oriented titles numbering in the thousands. Ads cannot be skipped but appear to be aligned with the ratings of the titles; for example, ads during kids' titles promote teaching as a profession. Adult titles include R-rated, M, and NR titles, and users can create an account simply by logging in with an email and password.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byJesse M. March 30, 2018

Tubi TV Uses Religious Ads

Tubi TV regularly shows ads and commercials which are of a religious nature and promotes religious companies.
Adult Written byjaclyno1 September 1, 2018
It has movies for all ages. Even has the cartoon movie The Smurfs which came out 1976. Has Old movie classics to New movies. I love it!!!
Teen, 15 years old Written bywizardortitan July 11, 2016

Supervision required.

The site has a large kids/family section with plenty of entertaining choices. However, there is also the issue of the "Fright Night" section, which fe... Continue reading

What's it about?

Tubi TV is a multiplatform movie and TV series service that carries some classics, such as Star Trek VNight of the Living Dead, and Ordinary People, plus some lesser-known festival award-winners, such as Falling Angels and Alamar. Unique categories include Best of British, Women First, Korean Drama, Music, Grindhouse, and Killer Kung Fu. Kids and Family standouts include Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown, Jim Henson titles such as Fraggle Rock, some Disney knockoffs, and more. Social-media links are plentiful, as are ads that interrupt play but can be muted manually. Tubi TV can be accessed via Xbox 360, Roku, iPad or iPhone, Google Play Store, Amazon Fire TV, or a Web browser. Closed-captioning is available for some titles, and there are of course subtitles for foreign flicks. 

Is it any good?

Tubi TV exemplifies a new breed of Web-based entertainment services that blend on-demand streaming with the old days when we paused for "announcements." The total number of titles is impressive, with about 15 percent category overlap, but there are only a few recognizable classics. A good number of foreign films, especially from Korea, and global festival award-winners plus inspiring independent titles will broaden your kids' horizons or put smiles on their faces, and the Music and Get Fit! categories offer variety and depth. Some documentaries might test your kids' patience but expand their global cultural knowledge in the same stroke.

Though there are plenty of titles to keep you and your family busy for a good while, the Kids and Family section is the only place to reliably avoid R-rated films and mature TV series. There also doesn't appear to be a way to purchase a subscription or buy titles ad-free. Getting the whole shebang for nothing is nice -- make no mistake -- but having the choice to go ad-free at least on occasion would be even nicer. Though Tubi TV lacks a queue, it does have a "keep watching" feature. Overall, despite its shortcomings, Tubi TV is a worthwhile free entertainment resource for adults. For kids under 17 who are surfing the Web independently, the potential exposure to mature content probably isn't worth the benefits.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why ratings exist. What makes a movie or TV show appropriate for a certain age? Do you think some kids can handle more than others? Why?

  • There are lots of documentaries available on Tubi TV; viewing one is a great opportunity to start a conversation. After watching Alamar, do a bit of research as a family about fishing cultures in Mexico and the work of Mexican director Pedro González-Rubio.

  • Enjoy titles that have won festival awards, and set a goal to attend a festival as a family one day.

Website details

For kids who love video

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