Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Queue

I've been on Netflix for a couple months now, and I love it. Practically everything available on region 1 DVD is at my fingertips. I may never set foot in a video store again, which is a little sad but not really. And it's fun always having something to look forward to in the mail. The disadvantage is that long queue. I have around 160 titles in my Q, so you get really impatient looking at those titles at the bottom and knowing your not going to be watching them for another year. (Sure, I could move them up, but I'd just be moving something else down.) Or the knowledge that you have to choose between getting through Battlestar Galactica or starting The Wire.

Another good thing is that it makes it much easier to watch those movies you "should" watch. You know, classic, artsy foriegn films like Tokyo Story or Wild Strawberries. Movies I always tell myself I need to watch, but when I get to the video store there's always something I'd rather see. Now, I put Tokyo Story in the Q (strategically placed between a kung fu flick and a disc of the Led Zep DVD), and when it comes up, it arrives. Of course, then I have to actually watch Tokyo Story, which is a bit of a problem, because I don't really want to watch it. I want to have watched it. But of course, most of these movies end up being much more enjoyable than you'd expect.

Some stuff I've watched recently:

Don't Deliver Us From Evil - All I really knew about this beforehand was that it was a French film from the 70's based on the same incident as Heavenly Creatures. Loosely based--I don't know how accurate HC is (I believe it sticks pretty closely to the facts of the case), but this one is just looney. For one thing, these aren't girls who make bad decisions. They're complete psychopaths who conduct black masses, burn down a farm, and establish a pattern of sexually teasing men until the men try to rape them, at which point they kill or otherwise exact revenge. And we're not talking young Kate Winslet girls here, either. The actresses look maybe 15 at the most. Pretty sick, but it's got an ending that I doubt anyone could see coming.

One-Armed Swordsman - I've been enjoying these Shaw Bros. DVD's from the Weinstiens. I bought 36 Chambers of Shaolin and 5 Fingers of Death from Best Buy, and they're both amazing films. 36 Chambers has commentary by Andy Klein and The Rza, and 5 Fingers has Tarantino, Elvis Mitchell and some other critic. QT is pretty hilarious. There's this one part where the hero's fists start glowing red before he gets into a fight, and Quentin yells out "See that red? That's yo ass!") Anyway, One-Amred Swordsman has a feature called "Instant Action," which is basically the movie stripped down to just the fight scenes. Somehow, the copy I got was fucked up, and it would only play that function, so I have no idea what actually happens in the movie, even though I watched it twice (in less than an hour).

Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip - Bobbie's been getting this one. I've never watched The West Wing, but I understand that people like it because it portrays the president who says and does the things we wish a President would do. Studio 60 is about a network executive and producers who behave the way we'd want them to: taking risks, standing up for creativity, thinking long-term about building a name that means quality. I have a lot of problems with it (it's very...written, and Sarah Paulson strikes me as very miscast for her role), but I'm enjoying it.


Blogger Paula L. Johnson said...

In case you were wondering, Netflix allows you to have just 500 titles in your queue. The bastards!

A few Netflix favorite finds:

The Zero Effect
MI-5 (The BBC series also known as Spooks)
The Red Violin
Dead Like Me
Bottle Rocket
Laurel Canyon
Dream Lover

3/13/2008 8:49 PM  

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