Hands-On Review: Star Wars Blu-ray Preview iPad App
Never one to back away from hyping up their goods, Lucasfilm has created a simple, free app to show off some of the bonus features on the upcoming Star Wars Blu-ray sets. “Simple” is the key word here, as the app is just a few clips and interactive images/models. The app is broken down into six sections, one for each Star Wars film, with four bonus feature previews for each flick. The first is a couple interviews or video commentaries for each movie. Next up is “The Collection,” which is a 3D model of a prop from the films that you can interact with by swiping the screen. Lastly, each movie has one piece of concept art attached.
The Interviews/Commentaries make up the bulk of the app’s content but I feel like I’ve seen some version of them before on the DVDs. Topics include the making of the holo-chess set, Irvin Kershner on the principle actors in the movies and the inspiration for ship designs. “The Collection” of movie props is a solid idea with poor execution. They made 3D scans of props and models and dropped them in the app but all you can do is spin them around, no zooming. The concept art is a little better but with only one piece per movie, it’s very underwhelming. I do like being able to easily zoom in and focus on specific details of the images though and just wish there was more to it than this. Here’s an example of the art in the app:
While this particular app may be somewhat lackluster, the potential is definitely there to use tablets effectively for movie tie-ins. Being able to swipe and zoom through scenes (imagine being able to swipe your way around Blade Runner’s insanely detailed sets) and models could be fantastic. Concept art or model galleries don’t really work well on a TV screen with a remote but having them literally right at your fingers to manipulate would at least entertain me more than they currently do.
Final Opinion: Nothing new to see really but it’s a cool idea and a decent way to kill 20 minutes if your on a bus or in a waiting room. If this was a preview for an upcoming app that featured all the same concept art, props and videos heading to Blu-ray, I’d be way more excited.