Red Stars and Other Netflix Musings

I’ve returned to using Netflix this year and it’s working out great for Liz and me, both film lovers. Here are some thoughts on my recent Netflix experience.

I noticed the other day that when Netflix shows me ratings for a movie that I haven’t rated (the red stars), it is not showing me what I thought that was. The red stars show me what Netflix thinks I will rate the movie rather than the average of what others have rated. It is a prediction. This is not news, but is news to me. I don’t like it. I’d like to see the average rating given by others instead of the predicted rating for me. I’ve taken to hovering over each film’s title or image to get that information. It’s annoying but doable and I prefer it to the misleading red stars.

Recently when Liz was away for a few weeks, I had a plan to watch a bunch of action flicks and such-like that I wanted to see and knew the she wouldn’t want to see. Not that she isn’t into action films; the other day we greatly enjoyed Inglourious Basterds. So I browsed for those films that I had heard of and those that folks recommended, added them to my queue, and moved them to the top. Soon enough they started showing up and I had a great time catching up on that genre. Now that Liz is back, the queue is as it was before she left and I’m faced with a slight problem. When I come across a film in the aforementioned genre, I would like to store it for another similar time in the future. However, I can’t just add it to my queue without constant annoying maintenance. I’d like a feature using which I can make a list of movies called “Sam’s Must-See Action Flix”. When Liz travels, I can make this list my active queue in one click. And then one-click should return the active queue to the regularly scheduled list when she returns. Simple.

The “Watch Instantly” feature of streaming movies is most excellent. I love it, despite the fact that it causes my browser to crash once each time I use it. I’ve been using it to see movies I’ve enjoyed before but not seen in a long time and also for those times when you just want to see something right away but aren’t in the mood for the DVD lying on the table. It would be most awesome if it worked directly with my PlayStation 3 but from what I’ve read that is not likely to happen anytime soon.

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