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A complete movie guide on your iPhone

Mel Martin

In my last post I wrote about Movie Vault, so I'm going to loosely stay with the subject and suggest that you take a look at the recently updated Leonard Maltin Movie Guide. We looked at the original version many months ago, and I think the app is better now.

For US $2.99, you get the complete set of Maltin reviews, and since the app is Internet connected, you get new reviews as they appear.

Here are the things I like: The app is quite fast, and when you start typing a title or a name, it auto-completes. There are trailers for newer films out there. Names of actors and directors become hotlinks that you can click on and perform a search on those names. There is very nice integration to Netflix. You can put a movie in your instant or DVD queue, or you can even move that film to the top of the list. There are also rental links to iTunes, and you can share reviews from this app via email. The app has welcome links to IMDB (for really in-depth info) and Amazon (if you want to purchase a film on disk).

Gallery: Maltin Movie Guide Screen shots | 3 Photos

Things I don't like are that the older films tend to have short reviews, and I'd like to see more than a paragraph on many of the films. There are errors, which is to be expected, but I don't like seeing them. For example, all the Anthony Mann films don't appear under his name, but when you look up the missing film, his name is there as director. The search window forces you to select the type of search (title, director, actor) when I should be able to just start typing without the pre-sort.

The app looks great on the iPhone, and this latest version supports the Retina display. The big missing is that there is no iPad version, and I think that is necessary. Scaled up text doesn't look that great, and the trailers suffer too. The developer says they are 'looking' at this option, which is a bit short of a commitment.

If you're a movie buff, I think this app is the best of the movie guides, with a lot of features that just aren't found elsewhere combined into one app. Some more depth, one step search and an iPad version would make it nearly perfect.

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