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What kind of movie

Vison by Neven Udovicic – inspired by the choice paralysis

We’ve all probably been in a situation of wanting to watch a movie, but not knowing which one—there are just so many! It seems like every week a new streaming service appears… Everything is available on-demand, at our fingertips. This choice paralysis inspired Neven Udovicic to make a simple tool that will guide users by filtering down their options and, who knows, maybe even make them discover something that’s completely outside their usual circle of choices. As a UX designer and a big cinephile, it was a deeply personal project for Neven.

What’s already out there?

Of course, there already are dozens of movie websites that generate all kinds of lists (“10 great road movies you’ve never seen”, “Most obscure movies for hardcore cinephiles”, etc.)— even databases you can filter by genre and sort by decades. But neither is usually specific enough to match with our current mood. This sparked an idea of a slightly new kind of filtering: combining multiple plot-based tags. That way one could get a list of sexy movies about infidelity set in summer, or morbid non-English movies about obsession. That sounded a lot better than a basic genre + decade combination. Deliberately avoiding filters based on year or country (which one would usually find on these kinds of websites) allowed search results to be more inclusive, placing popular titles along with obscure ones, or old with new ones.

Application landing page Picture 1. Application landing page

Machine + human

The tricky part—probably crucial—was curation: creating a database with hundreds of handpicked movies, and then mapping them to appropriate tags. No website scraping could produce meaningful results, which meant it had to be done by a person, movie by movie.

Always changing

Several months of exploration and filling the database later, website is now live with 1500+ movie titles which can be discovered through 150 different tags. Although it’s already more than enough to fill a lot of movie nights, the plan is to keep the database growing, always adding or changing tags, keeping the experience fresh and interesting.

Development details

One specific detail in the development of this application is using Progressive Web Application technology (PWA). PWA enables downloading of applications without requiring installation via digital distribution systems like Apple App Store or Google Play. Likewise, PWAs running on mobile devices can perform much faster and provide user experiences similar to native applications.

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