The Business Intelligence Blog

Let QuickLaunch help you pick your movies this Holiday Season

December 20, 2017   |   By Plus Two

It is a wonderful time of the year to relax with friends and family, indulge in tasty treats, and enjoy a quality Holiday movie. But with so many great films to choose from how will you decide?

Well grab the popcorn and check out the Holiday Movie Portal from Preferred Strategies. We have analyzed the highest earning box office films along with some classics that we couldn’t go without. Before spending a few hours on the couch with the in-laws or your little nephew, you may want to check out a few stats from each film, including the overview, year, rating, availability on Netflix, box office revenue, Rotten Tomatoes score, IMDb ranking, and more. Once you find a good option you can watch the movie trailer or buy it on amazon.

To interact with the live report below or click here to open it in your browser.

The first page of the report acts as a home page for the “App”. From here users gain information about the purpose of the report and how to use the navigational controls to quickly browse the 28 pages in a few clicks.

The new Bookmarks feature along with the Selection pane of Power BI lets you create links to views of a report based on several variables such as filters, slicers, cross highlighting, visible visuals (images), and more. Using this new functionality, content creators can begin to tell much better stories with their data.

In Power BI, images and shapes can be set as either a Back link, which takes you back to the previous page, or you can set them as a link to predefined bookmarks. In the Holiday Movie Portal report, bookmarks are used two ways. To get different views of the Silver Screen page, we used the Selection pane to hide and show certain movie cover images based on the input the user selected on the previous page and then created a bookmark to use as a link from the rectangles and genre images on the Holiday Movie Portal screen. Also, a separate bookmark is used to link from the Silver Screen to the individual movie pages.



If you are more of an old school numbers person, there is a Movie Summary page that provides a spin on a traditional data table. Slicers on the side make it easy for users to filter data. I also made use of the conditional formatting capabilities in Power BI in the form of Data Bars to represent the Box Office revenue compared to other rows in the table as a bar chart inside the cell. Also, Color Scales are used on the movie rating columns to help find the best and worst.

Lessons learned:
1. There are a lot of Holiday movies

2. Overall bookmarking is a great addition to Power BI. Developers can use this feature to simply Spotlight certain visuals on a report or get creative with the ways users interact and interpret data.

3. The selection pane is hard to work with when there are more than 5 to 10 report objects. Users should be able to rename each object with a meaningful name which is not available in the Preview release of Bookmarking. Without this capability I found myself playing a game of remember the movie cover.

4. Cards, tables, and matrix visuals are not effective for displaying long text strings. There was no way to automate the movie overview text to change when the page filter is changed. As a result, I had to copy and paste all of the movie descriptions into a textbox. This is obviously not ideal. I also tried a custom visual for wrapping the text, however I found that it was almost impossible to wrap all the lines of text without creating a line break in the middle of words.

5. Test, Test, and Test again. When creating reports in the desktop you may think that everything is pixel perfect until you go to share the report with other people in the Power BI Service. I have found that the formatting is much different once being rendered in a web browser instead of the Power BI desktop. For this reason, it is critical that you test your reports while developing them by publishing to My Workspace or a development workspace.

The Holiday Movie report was inspired by Lindsay Pinchot at Blue Granite. You can check out her post here that describes a creative way to use bookmarks to make your Power BI reports feel like an App in appearance and navigation. If you would like step by step instructions on creating bookmarks check out her article or the Microsoft documentation.








Let us help you decide.