HelloMovies is one such Web 2.0 app that helps to narrow down on which movie to watch next. HelloMovies is very similar to Jinni in the way that it can search and recommend movies. That’s not surprising because both dig deep into the Movie Genome project for its search power. You can read a lot about the Movie Genome project in Wikipedia, but here’s a gist.
The Movie Genome is a way to tag all movies based on genre, mood, tone, plot, tastes etc. The index is generated from the words people use to describe a movie in internet discussions and reviews. All that web shoveling has resulted in a database that’s 22,000 movies strong and is swelling up with every release.
That’s the source of HelloMovies power. Now, let’s see how it benefits us, the film fan.
With HelloMovies you can”¦
- Find out which movie to watch.
- Find out where to watch it online.
- Find out what others are watching and share notes with them.
Finding out which movies to watch is the core job of the search feature on the site. There are many ways you can reach into its database and get the right movie for your taste or mood. You can search by Genres, Tastes, Release Year, Language, or Awards. You can use them one at a time or in combination like filters. You can further sort the results by release, recommended, popularity, or rating.
Or you can directly use the search bar (with auto-suggest) on top. I don’t, because I hate missing out on the cover flows of the related movies. The search box also leads to an Attic search, that is a listing of movies with the keywords in the title.
All of the information on one neat page
That’s one of the most organized aspects about HelloMovies. You get a brief synopsis with a mouseover on the poster. Click on your choice of movie and you get the full info about the movie. I won’t be able to put down everything here as you can see for yourself. But there are a few things you can focus on immediately.
HelloMovies describes the movie with a few adjectives under Tastes. The attributes along with the Genre frame the type of movie perfectly. These attributes are linkable and with a click, they will take you to other movies with the same qualities. The Trailer gives you a preview. Some movie pages though do not display trailers for lack of availability. Clicking on the white buttons helps you with recommendations to your friend list or adding it to your personal watch list for later viewing.
As you scroll down, you can roam your eyes over the ratings from IMDB and Critics Choice (from BFCA). If you are a film buff, these scores are instant indicators of movie worthiness. Then, further below, you get to read first-hand user reviews and those from sites like IMDB.
From the Recent Activity lookup, you can directly connect to others interested in the movie. What’s the world saying about the flick? Get the news from Twitter and Google News with a click.
Watching some movies online
Though not all movies are available for online viewing, you can source the ones which are available from the single click functions available under Where to Get It. The sources range from Hulu, YouTube, Veoh to subscription based sources (Netflix) and other DVD on-demand sources like Amazon. You can use the Where to Get It choices along with the other filters ranged above and below it.
The nerve center lies in the profile page
The user profile page is the starting point for building your own community of friends. It is almost Facebook-ish, with a Wall that displays what others post on your profile. You get to follow your friends’ movie liking-hating activities. Then there is the playlist which is your own watch list of movies that you are planning to see.
There’s a fun user activity monitoring feature that awards you points for rating movies, uploading movies, inviting users, uploading posters and trailers, reviewing movies, etc. You get to move through levels — starting from Newbie, through Movie Star and end up at the apex as a Godfather. For all that, you get rewarded with free gifts like HelloMovies Bumper Stickers, T-shirts, and even free tickets.
That will certainly keep me interested. I have seen my share of movie sites but I still like a slick way to get the scoop on a movie of my choice. HelloMovies makes it uncomplicated and right from the moment you land on the homepage, it’s a matter of 2-3 clicks.
Right now, I am happily clicking away on the movies I plan to watch. What about you?
If you’re a late-comer, do check out our freely downloadable The Internet Guide to the Movie Addict.
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