100 Cult Films: BFI Screen Guides Review

100 Cult Films: BFI Screen Guides Review

100 Cult Films: BFI Screen Guides for iPhone and iPad explores world cinema’s most interesting and influential movies

The British Film Institute is one of the film industry’s most revered and respected organisations and here it presents 100 cult films, picked for being interesting and influential. Drawing on the acclaimed book of the same name, with all of its insight and discussion about the various included films, the app makes use of the multimedia capabilities of the iPad by allowing you to watch compelling video trailers and clips.

While some of these videos, when watched through the app itself, seem to lose some of their sound and picture quality, there is a button to go to YouTube where the reproduction appears to be better (you also benefit from being able to read comments from YouTube users too). But the videos serve mainly as additions to the star attractions: the prose and the choice of films.

Dirty Dancing and Dawn Of The Dead sit alongside The Big Lebowski and Fight Club. Akira, This Is Spinal Tap and Edward Scissorhands nestle nicely with Plan 9 From Outer Space. Tapping on one of these entries shows you film credits, fan sites and quotes and you can view the country of origin, the year it was made and its running time.

Each entry within 100 Cult Films can be shared via email, Twitter and Facebook and they can be marked up as having been seen by yourself or as something you want to mark and maybe see at some point. Its strength lies in its searching abilities and the fact you can not only view and edit films you’ve seen and browse your favourite flicks, but search by director, year of release and genre and jump through the list using the alphabetical menu which runs down the side of the screen.

There is no doubt that this is an impressive body of work made even better by clear presentation and the introduction of elements that do not overwhelm the central message, instead enabling you to get more out of the information that is presented to you. For film fans, 100 Cult Films is an essential purchase and a guide that you will return to again and again for reference and inspiration.

Rated 4 out of 5

A beautiful, simple and clear guide to some wonderful films written in the most engaging and thought-provoking of styles.