The National Film Board of Canada (the NFB) has released its own application for the iPhone which includes hundreds of films, animated shorts, history vignettes, and classics all free of charge. My sister put this on my radar when she posted about it on Twitter so I thought I would check it out.
When I went to the iTunes App Store on my phone to get it I noticed that it was the “app of the week” since the NFB icon is the current main icon for the entire “entertainment” category. Upon downloading the app I discovered why it’s being showcased and has already received top reviews from sites like Gizmodo.
Some features I enjoy are the search and the ability to “favourite” videos. This allowed me to find The Cat Came Back and The Logdriver’s Waltz, save them, and play them back for my American husband. You can play clips on demand or click to have them download for future viewing.
I must have spent about 45 minutes sifting through all the amazing content and using specific keywords to find either documentaries I remembered or content I haven’t yet seen. How to Make an Igloo is an oldie but a goodie and I could spend about 4 hours going through the entire “History” section. You can also download and view a 57 minute documentary about the Greatest Canada, Tommy Douglas, made in 1986 — all for free and on-demand.
The app is clean, sleek, and having that search option or capability to see the Most Popular is a great way to bring back memories or introduce classics to new users. If you do not have an iPhone, much if not all of this content is available through their website as well where they even featured the first version of their iPhone app… circa 1980.
Links: iTunes App Store download link, NFB blog post outlining the features of the app.