This Sunday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ annual Oscars award show will celebrate movies so good you wouldn’t want to miss a moment of them. But sometimes, no matter which movie you’re watching, nature begs for your attention and miss you must — especially if you’ve just consumed the theater’s most colossal, extra–large soft drink.
Lucky for you, there’s an app for that.
RunPee, from independent developer Dan Florio of Orlando, Fla., tells users the best times to go pee during all widely released movies and some limited–release independent films now playing in theaters, as well as a large selection of older movies released since 2009.
Synopses, sharing and more
The app’s data is updated at the end of every week, after Florio, members of his family and a contributing professional movie reviewer (Shanee Edwards) attend the first showing they can of each new release, take notes, then decide the best times for a bathroom break when important scenes won’t be missed.
On average, there are about three new films added to the app each week. Normally, there are at least two pee break periods for each film listed, and each break is three to five minutes long. They’re typically spaced 15 to 20 minutes apart. Florio said.
Dialogue or scene cues are provided to mark the start of a pee break period, and a built–in timer can be set to alert the user to a pee break by vibrating the phone (so other theatergoers aren’t disturbed); the user just has to remember to start the timer when the movie begins to play.
Synopses inform the user what happens on–screen during each pee break, while he or she would be away — although pee breaks are designated to not coincide with important plot twists, funny dialogue, best action, or other compelling moments.
Within each movie’s listing, more features include notations about any extra scenes or other entertaining content that plays during or after the movie’s end credits; a movie review from the RunPee team; a User Ratings section that shows how other RunPee users rate the movie; and links to Facebook and Twitter (for social sharing), RottenTomatoes.com (for movie synopses and ratings), and IMDB.com (for cast and crew information).
In addition, the user can set a “DVD release alert,” which is an automatic one–time e–mail sent to the user when the movie becomes available on DVD.
User feedback is considered, too
Most users have been satisfied, and many have written to say they think the pee times are “spot on,” Florio said.
Despite the RunPee team’s best efforts, however, “sometimes we get criticized,” he said. Some users write to tell him, “that was a horrible pee time, that was an important scene,” he said.
Occasionally he’ll agree and retroactively shift a pee time in a movie listing, he said, citing an exchange with a user last week about the new release Winter’s Tale. “I saw it myself, thought I had a wonderful pee time, and this user…disagreed with me,” he recalled. Upon reconsideration, he said, “I did agree with her and moved it just a little bit.”
Past as prelude
The RunPee iPhone app, which was launched in the Summer of 2009, was an evolution of Florio’s original RunPee website, which was launched in 2008 and was comparatively simplistic. The RunPee Android app followed in 2010, and last year Florio added the RunPee Windows Phone app.
In the future, he’s hoping to have celebrities contribute their own pee time listings to the RunPee app.
Regardless of other app features, though, pee times remain preeminent, Florio said.
“As good as the app is,” he proclaimed, “I tell my family, we’re only as good as our last pee time.”