Windows Movie Maker has been a cornerstone tool of the amateur video editor for an extremely long time. A lot of video graphers, amateur cinematographers, and simple weekend point-and-shooters have used the free program and have done wonders with it. However, just because something has a history, does not mean that it is necessarily the best product you can be using. After a long time as one of the best free video editors for Windows users, Windows Movie Maker has been discontinued.
While more complex features may be included, these tools will allow you to create a movie in minutes on Windows 10.
All the features you love from Windows Movie Maker, with a familiar look
The first time you open it, Shotcut bears little resemblance to Windows Movie Maker, but hit the Playlist and Timeline buttons at the top and it starts to look very familiar.
Open files to add them to your playlist, then drag and drop them onto the timeline to piece them together, just like you could in Movie Maker. Once you’ve got everything in order, hit the Filters button, then click the plus sign to apply transitions and effects. You can apply as many effects as you like, including coloured filters like those available in Windows Movie Maker, plus advanced options such as chroma key compositing for greenscreen effects.
There’s even a text option that lets you create titles and watermarks – and they look less cheesy than Windows Movie Maker’s equivalents.
Best of all, Shotcut is open source, so none of its features are hidden behind a paywall. If you miss Windows Movie Maker, Shotcut is the best alternative.
A nice choice of tutorial videos can also be found on the site to help you get started.
Now this is an unusual option. Ezvid is more commonly known as a screen capture tool, so you might not think of it a a Movie Maker alternative. But it also features a video editor. Better still, you’re not limited to screen capture video clips in the editor!
To get started, click the filmstrip icon to add pictures and video clips to the timeline. This will let you edit your video together, but you’ll need an additional app to crop clips. Note that there is also the option to record audio (you cannot import a separate audio track), and give the recorded track some interesting effects, such as telephone FX.
Ezvid is not an accomplished video editor, and if anything is less functional than Windows Movie Maker. However, it remains a useful tool to have around, if only for the screen recordings.
A vast selection of free video editing tools are available in the Window Store. Sadly, they’re almost all hampered by a poor UI, instability, or overbearing adverts. One app that we tried that managed to do the job without any trouble is Story.
Using Story is a little fiddly. When you’ve added a video to your project, click Edit to select the portion of it that will appear in the finished project. Once this is done for all videos, and any images have been added, you can also Add Music. A title can also be set, and the video exported with ease.
Available via iSkySoft, Filmora Video Editor is the only paid solution in this list, but is worth trying out due to its straightforward, no-fuss approach to editing video.
Although the app will set you back $60 (lifetime subscription; a $30 annual sub is also available), a free trial is available, which we’d encourage you to try out. Getting started is as straightforward as you might expect, and the user interface is intuitive enough.
As you’d expect, videos, still images, and audio can be imported into the timeline with ease. Once there, they can be cropped, swapped around, and various effects added. There’s also the option to rotate and crop videos, add overlays, effects and transitions, along with the expected standard editing tools. Your finished video can then be rendered and exported into a suitable format, and even uploaded directly to YouTube, Facebook or Vimeo.
Another Windows Store app that is worth checking out, Animotica makes great use of touch screen devices. But it’s also perfect for desktops and non-hybrid laptops.
The result is a polished video produced with one of the most accomplished Windows Store apps available. This might be the best free alternative to Windows Movie Maker. It’s just so easy, and effortless, to create a video with Animotica.
At the time of writing, Animotica is currently in beta.
This open-source software program runs smoothly with Windows 10. It has a very user-friendly interface makes navigating the program easy for those with a little experience in video editing. Your files can even be extended using third-party video filters and it supports batch processing which means it is possible to handle multiple videos at the same time. Unfortunately, even with its friendly interface, this program can be a little difficult to understand for beginners.
7. Pinnacle VideoSpin
Pinnacle offers an intuitive software program that can be relied on by professionals, but has a simplicity to be navigated by beginners. This program supports a plethora of file formats that has a timeline that makes it extremely easy to edit your video without experiencing any difficulties. However, program has not been updated since 2009 which means there are some compatibility and sustainability issues.
8. Sony Vegas Movie Studio
Vegas Movie Studio as well as you to come up with stunning videos were giving minimum effort. This software leans towards the more experienced side, and is really only suitable for those with a true passion for video editing is not only does it have a high retail price but its interface and internal elements can be too complex and confusing for those just beginning.
Other Options Are Available!
All of the Windows Movie Maker alternatives we’ve looked at so far have been apps that are downloaded and installed. However, browser-based tools are available for editing video. Such tools involve uploading the clips first, then editing them together.
It’s great to see that Windows has so many free video editing options, from the open-source world to the closed shop of the Windows Store and everything in between.
Did you find one that you like? Do you have any suggestions we can add to this list? Tell us in the comments.