We all love a film night occasionally, whether it’s popping out to see the latest blockbuster or renting a DVD and eating homemade mug-cakes – watching movies is fun. Even though the screens on smartphones are getting larger and larger they are not going to replace “the big screen” any time soon. If you’re serious about your movies and want to be able to distinguish between the classics and the ‘Sharks in Venice’, it’s important to have a couple of apps on your phone. The following apps will ensure your cinematic viewing is of the highest calibre.
Movies (by Flixster)
This is a kind of everything-in-one app. The Movies app lets you browse DVD releases, watch trailers, read reviews, find out what’s on at your local cinema and check out Rotten Tomatoes scores. You can link it up with your Facebook account to share movies with friends, or just add friends via the Flixster site itself.
This is a free app, but it’s only worth downloading if you’re already subscribed to Sky; just pump in your Sky Go details and you’re on your way to having a portable entertainment system with you everywhere you go. With Sky Go, your smartphone is essentially a little TV, allowing you to watch any Sky channel you fancy – including Movies, obviously – and Sky Atlantic. It’s pretty handy if you like to watch on the go, though it lacks pause functionality and Anytime+ support. But still, it’s a great little addition to the Sky package.
Netflix is pretty big news in the UK right now, having being introduced here following US success. Netflix is basically an online service for free TV and movie streaming. You’ll need an account to stream on your phone, but it includes some pretty nifty features. You can sync your individual apps to your main Netflix account, so that if you break in the middle of watching The Wire on your Xbox, iPhone or AppleTV and then want to resume online, you’re free to do so! This is especially good for films and long-haul TV shows that you might not have time to finish in one sitting.
OK, so IMDB isn’t exactly there to help you watch movies, but it will help you to enjoy them. When you’re sitting on the couch watching Game of Thrones and suddenly you realise you recognise King Robert Baratheon from… was it The Full Monty? In such dilemmas, it’s much quicker to whip out your Android than to boot up the laptop.
Most of us will have a regular or ‘local’ cinema, and if that’s the case, you really should download yourself the relevant app. Most of the big cinema chains have apps for Android, including Odeon, Cineworld and Vue, which will provide a quick, simple way to find out movie showtimes for your local cinema. If you’re planning a big date night it might not be that handy, but when you’re out and about and have a couple of hours to kill, being able to quickly check whether The Hunger Games is going to be starting in the next half hour can be darn handy, believe me.