Message from OMDb

Movie search currently unavailable

The Open Movie Database (OMDb) is currently under fire by some honks. Therefore finding a movie with Movie Pulse after recording will fail at present. Please keep records at “Unsaved Records”, note the title & date and try again later. You can check the OMDb availability status here.

Message from OMDb
This is what Brian Fritz from OMDb ist telling (4th of February 2017)
3 screens of version 1.2

Version 1.2 available!

I’ve used the chance to not only eliminate the poster issue problem – I’ve changed the usability of the Apple Watch app itself:

No more unwanted pause/resume incidents.

What’s new in Version 1.2?

Improved usability for WatchOS, better save graph support and some bug fixes.

  • removed a bug which prevented posters from loading and displaying
  • multiple records will now be listed promptly after being received
  • recorded graph along with the poster can now simply be saved to your photo library
  • and finally: stop/pause on Apple Watch has been transferred to a force touch menu. This will help to prevent accidental use of stop/pause/resume.
Movie Pulse at the cinema

The 2016/17 Research Sessions

Accompanied by Dr. André Weinreich, Head of Research & Science from emolyzr/Humboldt University, I’ve run several sessions during the winter semester 2016/17. We had up to two groups each week – one at the University Ostwestfalen-Lippe in Lemgo, the second at Humboldt University, Berlin. André Weinreich is a psychologist and researcher of emotions. He instantly understood what I am after, to examine the recorded heart rate of movie goers and he urged me to collect data on a broad variation of movie genres. We have two more movies left, but I’d like to compile the list of the recent movies.

The data is about to be analyzed – which will keep us busy the next months.

We probably release some insights from time to time, but please be patient for the proven outcome. Nevertheless I am still working on Movie Pulse as a tool useful for movie maniacs. I have a certain feature in mind for the next major release, but you’re always welcome to send ideas, feature requests and of course report malfunctions.

Autumn/Winter 2016/17 · Research Sessions

  • The Tin Drum, Volker Schlöndorff · 1979
    n=14 (Lemgo)

This story is based on a novel which is freely inspired by historical events. I know this is the most controversy movie I show in my lessons, because students of several years told me. It has been chosen because it evokes disgust as well as sexual stimulation (among other other things, of course).

  • Awakenings · Penny Marshall · 1990
    n=16 (Lemgo), n=14 (Berlin) both Lecture Hall

A drama with the focus on the relationship of a doctor and one of his patients, based on real events. This has been the movie I cried the most in my whole life. It has been chosen because of it’s emotional power to evoke compassion as well as it comes with a particular humor.

  • Delicatessen, Jean-Pierre Jeunet & Marc Caro · 1991
    n=14 (Lemgo), n=16 (Berlin) both Lecture Hall

A caretaker is threatened by the household. Although a bit outdated in terms of it’s fantastic and dystopian filmic universe, the movie is a classic and has been a boiler plate for a series of these kind of movies. It’s part of the screening because of a provocative story, an imminent bad ending and hilarious comedy.

  • Doctor Strange, Scott Derrickson · 2016
    n=16 (Lemgo, Cinema)

A mainstream movie, based on the Marvel comic universe with a favorable actor. Part of the list because of the absence of real human being living condition to identify with, as well as the presence of FX in visual and audio terms.

  • Legend, Brian Helgeland · 2015
    n=16 (Lemgo, Lecture Hall)

Based on the life of two real brothers, this movie brings two important things: an impressive performance of a famous actor (playing adult twins) along with an incredible story. Chosen because of it’s intensity of character presence, conflict and brutality.

  • Her, Spike Jonze · 2013
    n=15 (Berlin, Lecture Hall)

An intellectual movie facing a near future we might have with our smart devices. The movie develops an relationship between the main character and a machine. The scale of emotional involvement of the audience in this artificial plot setup makes this movie interesting for the list.

  • Phantastic Beasts and where to Find Them, David Yates · 2016
    n=15 (Lemgo, Cinema)

A movie based on the proven success of an existing phantasmagorial filmic universe. It deals with conflicts of characters of a non-contemporary plot, fantastic creatures and audio-visual impression. It has been chosen because of the probably lesser character identification, but larger impact in visual and sound terms.

  • Gone Girl, David Fincer · 2014
    n=15 (Berlin, Lecture Hall)

Based on a major conflict a couple has to deal with, the story heads towards classic changes in character judgement by the audience. This movie delivers a focus on the compassion the audience might have with the male or female – without being distracted by visual effects.

  • Robocop, José Padilha · 2014
    n=10 (Lemgo), n=16 (Berlin) both Lecture Hall

The dystopian Science Fiction settled on Earth in some near future re-interprets the successful original from 1987. The movie contains threatening cutting edge technology as well as the misfortune of a human being. Both made this movie useful for the list: the massive audiovisual impact of FX and the sympathy with the main character.

  • Deadpool, Tim Miller · 2016
    n=16 (Lemgo, Lecture Hall)

Based on another Marvel comic character, this movie provides a cynical, obscene and hilarious hero and a classic hero arc. This movie has been chosen because of it’s classical plot, hilarious comedy elements as well as it’s controversial character.

  • Schönefeld Boulevard, Sylke Enders · 2014
    n=15 (Berlin, Lecture Hall)

A female misfit character reclaims her acceptance within her adolescence development. A movie dealing with down-to-earth real problems of a young woman in a contemporary time frame and a ordinary setting. The absence of larger than life plot construction (and production scale) makes this movie of use for the list. How will this affect the compassion ability of the audience?

  • Zootopia, Byron Howard/Rich Moore · 2016
    n=14 (Lemgo, Lecture Hall)

A weak character by definition (bunny) in a classical zero to hero (animation) movie. How will the animated characters move the emotions of the audience? Will the movie provide an immersive experience similar to non-animated movies? These are some main questions we might have analyzing it.

  • Stereo, Maximilian Erlenwein · 2014
    n=15 (Berlin, Lecture Hall)

Preceding events of the life of the main character are affecting the love to a woman. The movie comes with a realistic setting along with a kind of psychedelic split-person threat. How does the audience deals with the psychic harassment as well as with the imminence through physical brutality will make this movie of use for us.

  • Heil, Dietrich Brüggemann · 2015
    n=16 (Berlin, Lecture Hall)

Besides it’s humorous handling of (German) nationalism, the movie has an intellectual quality while offering jokes on all kind of institutions, social levels as well as media formats. The questions for the study can contain the following: How does the controversial topic, the hilarious exposure of quite all characters and the quick succession of jokes will affect the audience?

  • Labor Day, Jason Reitman · 2013
    n=16 (Berlin, Lecture Hall)

A unpredictable character intrudes the life of a single mother with light force. A drama as well as a love story does the movie provide a strong quality of sympathy for all three main characters: intruder, mother and son. Besides the grade of identification with the personell will (presumably) the predictable and imminent end provide strong emotional response of the audience.

  • Passengers, Morten Tyldum · 2016
    n=14 (Lemgo, Cinema)

This science fiction with a fundamental optimistic belief in human expansion (technological and spacial) is an intimate theater on a space ship of sheer enormity. The lack of an alien threat helps to focus on the existential situation (mainly) two people are in. Therefore we can exploit how the audience involves with the development of the couple and how the the imminence both have to deal with affects visually and especially at the sound design.

  • American Psycho, Mary Harron · 2000
    n=16 (Berlin, Lecture Hall)

Summer 2016 · Research Sessions

We probably won’t be able to include the following movies, because of poor attendance and we had an essential change in questionnaire structure. We might be able to run additional sessions to increase the required number of test persons; the sessions are not necessarily bound to take place at the same location/at the same time. But, the lack of questionnaire quality does not recommend it.

Guardians of the Galaxy, James Gunn · 2014
n=8 (Lemgo)

Victoria, Sebastian Schipper · 2015
n=12 (Lemgo)

A Fish called Wanda, Charles Crichton/John Cleese · 1988
n=8 (Lemgo)

Fight Club, David Fincher · 1999
n=7 (Lemgo)

Martyrs, Pascal Laugier · 2008
n=7 (Lemgo)

Passengers Visit 1 and 2

“Passengers”

Wow, this has been a while. Silence means not inactivity. So I’d like to give you some updates right now. I will start with this great movie “Passengers” by the Norwegian Morten Tyldum (director) and Jon Spaihts (writer) from 2016. To my extend this is a new landmark for future design and an example of dedicated craftsmanship in script writing. A limited cast with a great dilemma in existential scale. It has been a pleasure to be a part time space (and time) traveller while watching this movie with its superior production design. Guy Hendrix Dyas work is nominated for the Oscar 2017. He better be!

I’ve been accompanied by 15 students of mine – they’ve been willing to give me their heart rate in exchange for the ticket. It was a kind of semester goodby as well. Their results are not yet evaluated. The raw data looks very mixed, as always.

Passengers Sessions in Movie Pulse
Some of the multiple recordings – raw and not yet synced

But because I’ve seen the movie twice, I’ve been curious to compare my first and second visit of the same movie. I felt very strong body reactions because of certain story incidents, as well as from the brillant sound. Did I mentioned the audio? Wow, terrific! I found an insight of the work of Will Files – one of the gifted audio folks involved.

A short look at both graphs made available through my app Movie Pulse obviously confirmed my presumption. But that even the high and low peaks at the end match 100% is definitely by chance. I combined both graphs for better comparison.

Passengers Visit 1 and 2
The impact after 1 hour has even been higher at the 2nd screening.

Since I do not yet have the movie available on DVD or Bluray I can only guess what happened after 1 hour. I am pretty sure that this has been caused by a simply two line dialogue, because at the 2nd screening I knew instantly that these en passant spoken words will have serious consequences. As I write these lines: what if not? Let’s see later, if the movie is available. Come on, it’s an assumption, can be proven wrong…

Jim: There’s no secrets between us.
Arthur: Is that the case?

Michael Sheen
Michael Sheen as “Arthur” the android barkeeper

Because I have access to the raw data of the recordings on my research devices (which is not [yet] available at the official app at iTunes, because of privacy rules), I can get my hands on the data curves. I made two graphs, comparing both recordings. As always the data is now basis 0 at the average heart rate and normalized.

Curves of both cinema visits
Both curves compared show areas of very similar reaction of the test person (me)
Conformity in red an green
Time line to compare both movie screenings: green areas depict similar reactions, red ones show the timespan which differentiates

There are a bunch of movies with a horseload of data waiting to be analyzed and evaluated. Among them the heart rates of 15 people watching this movie. Let’s see if I can find some more conformity comparing those, rather than my own visits. Dr. André Weinreich and me are almost done with the sessions in this semester. I will give you a follow up what happened the last months.

"Avakenings" 1990 by Penny Marshall · Normalized raw data - not analyzed yet

New Research Partner · Summer Break

I am very happy about our new very interesting research connection: Dr. André Weinreich, Head of Research & Science from emolyzr (DE) is joining our Movie Pulse research group. He is a psychologist and dedicated researcher of emotions. His particular interest to join is the supposed ability to find emotionial patterns in peoples reactions, while watching movies  – with the help of our app. This would be a breakthrough, because the app frees the research process from the need of a lab (within the limits of data which can beachieved with a wearable, of course). You can find more about their very sophisticated approach if you watch the videos of this company, which has been founded by the Humboldt University, Berlin.

Although some more data is waiting to be analyzed – we will now have our holiday break. Enjoy your days of lazyness or activity…

We will continue to analyze already recorded data, as well as we will run new screenings. I am especially keen to see the results of “Awakenings” 1990 by Penny Marshall – one of the most emotionial movies I’ve ever seen.

"Avakenings" 1990 by Penny Marshall · Normalized raw data - not analyzed yet
“Awakenings” 1990 by Penny Marshall · Average raw & normalized – not yet analyzed

“Room”

I have to admit that I am currently running out of time for watching movies. But a friend helped me out with an impressive movie pulse of “Room” by the Irish Filmmaker Lenny Abrahamson. Brie Larson won the Oscar for her Joy “Ma” Newsome character.

“Room” by Lars Abrahamson, 2015

See by yourself: this is a awesome steady increase- I have never seen something like this before.

I am so curious what kind of story caused this almost symmetrical climax?

My habits on movies are quite special: I avoid to know anything beforehand and just mark a movie “worth watching”, after I picked something here and there. I’m quite sure I will still find a cinema in Berlin playing this movie, it’s on top of my list now!  I won’t even watch the trailer – you may…

Consider sending me your movie pulse after watching this (or any other) movie, since the fun part is comparing.

“Room” by Lenny Abrahamson, Trailer

The Nice Guys · Shane Black 2016

“The Nice Guys”

I am quite busy because of improving my analyzing tool set for multiple records. Spreadheet analysis with charts, graphs, normalization,  gender, age, formulas and stuff. A hell of a lot of data to process. This will keep me busy probably for the next weeks.

But sometimes I am able to reserve some spare time to watch a movie – like “The Nice Guys” by Shane Black which is a really entertaining piece of flick. Steady increasing heart rate – like the joy I had watching it. To guys going goon: Ryan Gosling as the stupid goon and Russell Crowe as the one with the loose fists. Watch those guys in this quite hilarious circumstances yourself. Before it’s to late.

 

The Rocky Horror Picture Show seen by five study volunteers

“The Rocky Horror Picture Show” · Lecture Record #3

This has been the most “shocking” movie for my students so far. At least three of them could not stand it’s b-movieish style, story and characters. But most of them watched it completely and some of them had have fun. But I assume this has been the minority. The concept of the movie will not work nowadays: to board a loved genre of the former generation (musical) and to whisk contemporary no-no’s, controversial moral issues and sexual frankness into a hym of individuality. My subjective appraisal on this consists of two motivations: 1st – this is not their music, therefore it’s just another musical for them; 2nd – society tends to prefer conservative ideas at present, even the younger are part of this trend. The sexual individuality and freedom of personal choice is still not guaranteed – even 41 years! after RHPS has been released.

We still have not achieved absolute pleasure.

Little Conformity

Although this is still not a valid test scenario in terms of quantity – I’d like to apply the former developed strategies for data comparison to this little data set again. This will help to achieve a valid outcome on a later larger scale of study volunteers.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show · Amount of aberration
The amount of aberration has been quite massive (light grey) and the less than average aberration little (dark grey)

Compared to former records this movie has raised very divers reactions and a small amount of similar tendencies. Just to recall: high values of the light grey depict regions where the subjects tend to have no comparable heart rate. The dark grey regions show the time spans of more similar reactions.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show · Accordance of 100%
Accordance of 100% percentage in red, calculated average in grey.

The absolute identical reactions of alle participants in terms of above or below the base line therefore have been very short and few (8,9 %).

Majority will make the Difference

The Rocky Horror Picture Show · Accordance of majority
The accordance of the majority (3 out of 5) compared with 100% accordance (black)

Five participants can have a majority of 60%. So 3 out of 5 show more similar reactions in high pulse (red) and low pulse (green). The 100% accordance is included in black, since this is a subset of the majority calculation.

Gender Comparison

The Rocky Horror Picture Show · Comparison of gender accordance
Comparison of gender accordance (male blue and female orange)

This comparison is new – almost new. I used it in “The Angry Birds Movie” to differentiate between the parent and the children reactions. I will make this a standard comparison: building subset groups of the study volunteers – the most obvious is gender. As long as we will have a fifty-fifty arrangement. And of course: this is only a valid result, if based on a relevant group size. Having 2 female and 3 male will not really suffice. But for building the tool set, we’ll use it for now. 54,4% of the female and only 28,7% of the male have had identical reactions within their group.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show · Gender difference and accordance
Accordance of all study volunteers (green) and regions where female and male reacted differently compared to the other gender (red)

This will improve the depicting of the differences for sub group comparison: you can easily compare the green amount of the movie, which caused similar reactions on all participants (8,9 %), with the amount of differences between the two groups: red shows the parts (51,7%) where female and male reacted similar within their own group (sex), but different to the other gender.

Visualization

The video depicts again the average threshold of the majority (60% this time) – the image becomes tinted in green and red. To make this work more obvious I have destained the movie beforehand. Additionally the 100% subset of all four test users has been included as well. To distinguish both data visually, a hint for the 100% subset has been added in white. If one image shows a white frame: this means all viewers have reacted the same way, not only the majority. The graph below the timeline shows this subset in white as well.

Additional design options for the resulting graph

Version 1.1

Thanks for coming up with your suggestions. I was able to make the usabilty more comfortable and save to prevent chances of faulty operation.

Improved design and usability for iOS and WatchOS.

  • several bug fixes
  • separate record tab to handle multiple records
  • supporting multiple watches
  • additional design options for the resulting graph
Version 1.1 · Portrait
Version 1.1 · Portrait
Additional design options for the resulting graph
Additional design options for the resulting graph