Movie Maker, a once-staple of Windows, was ditched as an app with the launch of Windows 10 in 2015.
The reasoning behind it was perhaps understandable – Movie Maker was extremely basic and most people would use something like Adobe Premiere Pro for regular video editing on Windows.
However, there are occasions when you might need to edit a quick video but don’t want or need to pay a subscription, and fortunately there still is a tool for this built-in to one of Microsoft’s stock apps.
Where is Movie Maker in Windows 10?
The Movie Maker you know from the likes of Windows 7 and Windows Vista is no longer available. In its place are some similar video editing tools within Microsoft’s own photos app.
This is a free download on the
Microsoft Store if it’s not installed already.
Considering it’s a feature buried within the gallery app, there’s a surprising level of functionality here. In addition to quickly editing a basic video, you can also add music, customise individual clips and even add 3D effects.
However, not all versions of Windows 10 will support it. Make sure your device is at least running the Fall Creators Update, released towards the end of 2017.
Search for Photos in the Start menu and launch the app. It should show the photos and videos that are stored in the default Pictures folder, arranged with the newest at the top.
The video editor isn’t obvious because you have to click on the Create button from the menu across the top.
How to use the video editor in Windows 10
Click the Create button from the menu across the top of the Photos app and choose Automatic video or Custom Video and then pick the photos and videos to include.
When you’ve selected everything you want, click the Create button at the top and you’ll be asked to name your video. After a short wait, your video will start playing.
If you don’t like the music or style, click the button above ‘Remix it for me’ and a random new style and music will be chosen.
You can save or share the video when you’re happy, or you can click the blue Edit video button at the bottom to get to the full editor.
How do I edit a video myself?
If you want full control from start to finish, then head to the ‘Collection’ view within the Photos app.
Hover over a photo or video and a square box will appear in the top-right corner. Click that to select the item, then select the other photos and videos you want to include in your video.
Now click the + Add to button at the top and choose New video with music.
Type a name for your video and you should see a link appear to ‘View video’. If not, click Video projects at the top and click on the video you just created.
Now the full editor will open up.
The interface is clean and simple: a very modern version of the old Windows Movie Maker.
Your chosen clips are shown at the top left, and a preview with playback controls top right. Below, on the Storyboard, is the sequence of clips which have been automatically added to the video which will play in order from left to right.
You can click and drag clips to re-order them and you can add new ones from the Project library section. To delete a clip from the Storyboard, hover over it and click the ‘X’.
How do I select which part of a clip is shown?
Click on the clip in the Storyboard, then click Trim. (Note that this option will only be displayed if you select a video clip. If you click on a photo, you can only change the duration.)
This opens up the clip editor where you can drag the blue handles to the places where you want the clip to start and end. Click Done if you’re finished.
But before you click Done, notice that at the top of this window are some of the controls from the main editor – namely Filters, Text and Motion.
Click on any of these and their options will be shown on the right-hand side. Filters are obvious: click on one to see how it will look.
If you want to add text to the clip, click Text then type in the box at the top. Choose one of the styles from down the side, then pick where you want it to appear under ‘Layout’ at the bottom.
How do I add 3D effects to my videos?
From the main editor, select the clip you want, then click 3D Effects from the menu just above.
Browse through the effects on the right, or use the search bar. Now, drag the slider below the video to the point where you want the effect to start.
Click on the 3D effect you’ve chosen and it will be inserted into the clip at that point. You can resize it, and use the 3D handles to rotate it to the exact position and orientation you need.
If the effect should follow an object in the video, click the ‘Attach to a point’ toggle, then drag the blue anchor point to the exact point that it should move with. Hopefully, the ‘AI’ will manage to do a good job of keeping the effect in sync.
How do I change the music and music volume?
From the main editor window, click Music from the menu at the top. Pick a song, and use the tick box below to decide if you want the video to sync with the beat of the music or not. If you choose sync, then the cuts will be made so the next video starts in time with the drum beat.
If the music is too loud and you can’t hear someone speaking in the video, click on the speaker icon next to Music and drag the slider to a more appropriate volume.
How do I change the theme?
As you might have guessed, clicking on Theme at the top lets you choose between the available styles for your video. This mainly affects the style of the text and titles, but also which music is automatically chosen.
Not taken with this built-in video editor. Check out some alternatives in our round-up of the
best free video editors.