So 2013 was the year I started using a second screen to play video games. Grand Theft Auto and Assassin’s Creed both use secondary apps that you download to your phone for enhancing your game play experience. The latter is a great addition to the game by the way. The Wii U comes with a handheld touchscreen in which you interact with various games by looking down at a second screen in your lap. To be honest, if done correctly, I love this additional, interactive content… for video games. Not so sure about it with my movie experience.
Yet that’s exactly what we’re getting with App, directed by Bobby Boermans. App is about a young psychology student who is drawn into the dark and fearful world of a diabolic and mysterious App that starts to terrorize her; distributing compromising photographs, videos and text messages about herself and delves deeper and deeper into her personal life, flawlessly exposing all of her deepest secrets.
The kicker is that while the film is playing, you leave your mobile device on your lap and you’ll receive additional information about the film every time your device vibrates. What exactly that additional content is, is unknown to me at the moment, but I suppose it could be interesting in this case as the antagonist of the movie is actually a phone app. The app is called IRIS by the way (SIRI in reverse for you Apple fans).
I’m willing to give the movie a try if it ever makes it into wide release. Like D-box and 3D and any other gimmick, the idea might be fun to try once, but I’m pretty sure I don’t want all movies to eventually go down this path. And I’m pretty sure they won’t. The theater constantly lighting up with cellular activity would be a real nuisance, even if I’m checking my phone too. Director Boermans said that “the notion of technology taking control of our lives is a concept that has always fascinated me. I’m a big technology addict myself…”. So in this case, a bunch of people sitting in a theater checking their phones is maybe a bit too meta?
Have a look at the trailer below. Beyond the phone thing, the movie has to be good for anything to work at all. So what do you think? A brave new world in film-watching or a terrible idea?