Dutch film festivals and archives offer online streaming of arthouse films

Dutch film festivals and archives offer online streaming of arthouse films

Events and festivals have been cancelled left, right and centre and that's understandable, what with coronavirus in our midst.

What's remarkable is that some Dutch film festivals have decided to go ahead, thanks to online streaming and partnerships with video player websites such as Picl, Vitamine Cineville and Cinetree. What's more, some eminent film archives such as those at the iconic Eye Museum are open for online viewing.

Stay safe at home and watch Dutch and international films

Even though the films showing can be in any language under the sun, the Picl and Cinetree websites operate in Dutch - this should not be a problem for anyone learning Dutch, though! Vitamine Cineville, on the other hand, has an English version of its website. On Picl, for instance, films can be streamed for a fee of 8,50 euros and they can be viewed within a 48-hour timeframe.

Get enlightened with arthouse gems, compelling documentaries and Dutch and international hits from the comfort of your home! Look out for films with English subtitles and if you can't find what you're looking for, why not watch some Dutch films on Netflix or Dutch TV series on Netflix?

Eye Film Museum archive

Watch some gems from the Eye Film Museum archives. The Eye Film Museum, also known as The Eye Film Institute, is the Dutch centre for film culture and heritage, dedicated to developing a distinctive film culture in the Netherlands. During the corona crisis, the organisation is keen to share its wealth of films, videos and sound files with the public.

Visit the Eye Film museum website and the Eye Film Museum youtube channel, which, in their own words, will "satisfy your movie cravings".

Cinema of the Dam'd

Cinema of the Dam’d brings movies to your comfy homes during corona times with their online platform for sharing films, called Dam’d Social Cinema. The idea is that audiences tune in to Twitch at a set time and stream films together, providing more of a community feeling to the online space. A presenter will welcome all viewers and there’s even a chat box for staying in the loop with fellow audience members!

Originally resident at OT301, the Cinema of the Dam'd has gone digital since the pandemic. From movie marathons to documentaries, it's a very dynamic landscape! It's free to use, but donations are appreciated!

International Film Festival Rotterdam 

Rotterdam is home to one of the leading film festivals each year in the Netherlands, the International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR). The festival returns to present a diverse programme of movies online, in IFFR Unleashed! It took place at the start of the year and escaped the coronavirus chaos, but still, the films are there to be enjoyed online. 

The next edition of the festival will be taking place on February 1-7, 2021 and June 2-6, 2021. Whether it will be online or face-to-face remains to be seen!

Nederlands Film Festival

You can get some cutting-edge Dutch-language films and television on the Nederlands Film Festival website. Both documentary and fiction films are featured and themes vary from environmental threats to human rights to LGBTQ equality, race and gender issues.

The film festival, which takes place in Utrecht in autumn each year, offers hidden gems and independent experimental films, celebrating Dutch talent. No need to wait until next September  - just have a peek online instead!

International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA)

International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) has over 300 free documentaries that you can find on the IDFA website. IDFA happens each year in Amsterdam and is one of the largest documentary film festivals in the world.

In the last edition, around 300 titles were shown, having been selected from more than 3.000 submissions. Along with offering filmmakers an incredible platform within the documentary industry, the public programme offers a valuable opportunity for audiences to see and be inspired by films that have a social impact.


Cinedans Festival shows the best international dance films and installations and explores the synthesis between dance and cinematography. This year, the festival went ahead online in the spring, and it's also having a web winter special!

In the last decade, Cinedans has grown into the largest and most diverse dance-related film festival in the world! It explores significant developments in the fusion of dance and film while also looking towards the future of these artistic genres. 

It's normally based in the iconic Eye Film Museum in Amsterdam. It is a meeting place for choreographers, directors and film and dance lovers from around the world - a renowned platform for exchanging creative ideas. Get online and see for yourself.


Now that we are in the midst of the coronavirus measures to stay safe at home, there are new ways of living our lives, which involves a lot of kids staying at home with their parents. On NPO Start, kids can now watch movies for free thanks to Cinedkid's online portal.

Just because you are over the age of 12 doesn’t mean that these films aren’t for you, though! These films are perfect for Dutch-speaking children, kids who are working on their Dutch, and adults! Many people would say that movies and TV shows aimed at kids are very useful for adults trying to learn Dutch. There’s more to Cinekid’s online films than meet the eye!

Cinekid Festival is the largest media festival for children on the entire planet. The film festival takes place once a year and there’s also a year-round programme with films, apps, educational fun and workshops.  

Movies That Matter Festival

Movies That Matter is an organisation that uses the power of film to promote human rights and social justice. They run a film festival each spring, but during the pandemic they have had a rich online programme that you can view on demand via Picl. 

The Hague, as an international city of peace and justice, is the designated home of the Movies that Matter Festival, which is funded by Amnesty International and takes place once a year. This year, there’s no need to go all the way to The Hague – you can discover the festival from the comfort of your sofa!

Keep calm and enjoy films from your sofa

There's such a broad range of film available online, whether you're a regular Netflix user or you seek out other sources of first-rate films. We hope this selection of Dutch film organisations offering streaming can help you in having an enlightening experience during these unusual times.

Rachel Deloughry


Rachel Deloughry

Rachel is a writer, editor and digital content creator, passionate about the arts, culture and lifestyle.

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