Most of the time, vendors are fudging a bit when they tout ease
of use, but Muvee’s Reveal 8 is truly the easiest movie production
utility I’ve ever used. It doesn’t offer quite the granular control
that pros or aspiring pros will desire, but there are more editing
functions than a first glance will divulge. And for the average
user who just wants something good-looking in a hurry, it’s more
than powerful enough.
By default, the uber-clean main screen does nothing but let you
choose and set the order of photos and video, pick a style, add
some music, and preview the results. Simple editing functions are
available by right-clicking on individual media. They’re quick and
efficient; however, the styles are the key. Using one of ten
stylistic templates, Reveal 8 assembles the component media you
provide into a cohesive video production.
The settings dialog offers you a chance to record a voiceover,
type in credits, and provide a logo that will appear as a watermark
during the entire movie. Most of Muvee Reveal’s other settings
address broad stylistic issues, such as whether to fit the photos
and video to the length of the music, or repeat the music to match
the length of the visual media. About the only hard time interval
you can set is how long a photo will display (1 to 10 seconds).
The results in my tests were nothing short of excellent. A short
movie using the Cube style rotated and pulsed in time with the
background music. Muvee Reveal even warned me when I didn’t have
enough images or video to match the length of the song. If that
pulsing-with-the-music-thing seems too much to you, don’t
worry–there’s also a Classic Vanilla style whose results are as
innocuous as anything you could desire. The other styles delivered
satisfying results as well.
If you want professional-looking video productions with minimal
fuss, you should check this program out. Owners of version 7 of
Muvee Reveal and recent versions of autoProducer can upgrade for
less than the full $80 price.
Note: The Reveal 8 demo wants to install the Yahoo
toolbar, so don’t blindly click through the install if you don’t
want the toolbar. The demo also ends all the movies with a
–Jon L. Jacobi