“I figure the odds be fifty-fifty” – Frank Zappa (From the song “Fifty-fifty”)
While the song is by far much cooler and also far more ‘indie’ than this app, the quote seems to sum up my thoughts on this release from FlickTweets. The app is simple in its execution, and it does what it promises, but I do have my doubts about it. I also have some grievances as well. So, lets get the short list rolling then.
While the interface is a fair copy of the built-in iPhone version of iTunes, (probably used the public API which is fine), it is dead simple to use. You simply select a category from the bottom bar, just like in iTunes, and it will display (in what appears to be) a random listing of the movies that are out “In Theaters”, “On DVD”, or “Coming Soon”. Your are treated to a good view of one of the movie posters for each film whenever available, as well as a MRQE rating from FlickTweets sister site, MRQE.com. The rating provided is nice but is not a typical system one is used to finding. What is present is a numerical score out of 100, which makes sense seeing as how the M in MRQE stands for metric, as opposed to the typical X out of 5 stars, or the thumbs up systems that we are accustom to seeing. The higher the number, the better; sorry golf fans. Once you find the movie your girlfriend is dragging you to tonight, if you didn’t use the handy built-in search function, you click/touch the movie and it brings up the top ten tweets about the movie. I’m assuming it’s using the ten most recent tweets, but I could be wrong. On the website, you can click on the name of the person who tweeted about the movie, and read more of their tweet, however, not here on the iPhone – more on that later. You can also click/touch the movie panel again at the top to read the information panel. This panel lists the director, the rating (i.e. pg-13, R, and the like), and the host of usual quick bits one may wish to know, including the synopsis of the thing that passes for a movie these days.
Does this App do what it says it will? Yes, it does. It collects tweets about the movie you’re going to see (or not), and gives you all you might need to know about a film that you might be wasting $15.00 on. Unless she wants rasinettes, yeah, she’ll want rasinettes, better make that $75.00 you’ll be blowing. Hope you didn’t need to pay rent this week. Now, on the other hand, do I personally think that this App could be better? Yes, I do. Read on if you wanna know my opinion of what they did wrong, or just didn’t do.
Seeing as how they make you pay the not-so-outrageous price of FREE, I can’t complain much. BUT I still found some room. On the website version, as listed above, you can click on the name of the person who tweeted and read their actual twitter page, however, here you can’t. You see their picture, and maybe HALF of their tweet. Unless their tweet says, “@losers SUCKED BALLS”, and that’s all. That you can read no problem. However, if you’re like me and would use 139 out of 140 characters to say how bad a movie was, all that this App would give you is 10% at best. It also does not have Twitter built-in, for say tweeting about your movie going experience right from the App itself, which would be handy. There is also no way of promoting, or demotion, any tweet that is on top. The only way to get someone who spammed about zircon encrusted tweezers from the ten most recent tweets is to get nine of your friends to join you in tweeting about your distaste for the movie you just suffered through.
So, in short – yes it does what it says, yes it is free, and yes it might help save you from spending rent money on a horrible movie. Though I feel this App was a bit rushed and needs some VAST improvements before I actually consult it about the new live-action smurf movie. (And no, I’m not joking, they ARE making such a movie). I give this App a 5 out of 10, or using their metric system a 50. You may like it, you may do like I did and delete it after ten minutes. Thankfully it IS free.