Friday, February 04, 2011


A week or so ago I got a promotional mailing from Netflix. It was promoting a free trial for a month. They gave me a promotional code and everything saying I was "special." They were lying. I waited a week or so to decide whether or not I wanted to take advantage of the trial as I already have Blockbuster's Total Access Plan. Granted, the TAP doesn't include streaming but I really don't have a need to watch online. Besides, I typically have time to wait for my DVDs to be mailed to me.

With this crazy ass snow storm we've been having in Dallas, it made me think about this free trial promotion. I have three movies I need to return to the BB store to exchange for three others but the freezing temperatures have not been very accommodating. I could walk there but I said to myself, "Self, why not try the Netflix free trial?" So, that's what I did. What's funny thought is that I believe the promotional code they gave me is just a way for them to track their marketing. Smart but not a special offer for me. I could have just signed up on the main page and received the same "promotion." Basically, I just signed up for a free 31-day trial of the 1 DVD out-at-a-time plan with unlimited time to watch instantly. And I have made as much use as possible in the past three days (since Feb 1st) of my unlimited watch instantly.

Before I get into my brief thoughts on the movies I have seen, I must say that I was initially stoked about being able to watch instantly on my laptop or my PS3 but it sort of wore off a bit as I find that many of the movies I've looked into viewing over the past few days are not available for instant play. I don't know the reasoning behind it because I have seen newer titles as well as 1 to 3 or more years old not available. I guess there is some agreement with the movie industry but again, I don't know. I can see the instant streaming being a blast for instant gratification when you get the immediate urge to watch a movie but if it's not available, it kind of defeats the purpose. I pay $19.99 + tax a month for my BB Total Access Plan with 3 out at a time (DVD or games) and unlimited DVD exchanges in the store. With Netflix, it costs $9.99 + tax for only 1 out at a time and unlimited watch instantly but with the limits of availability. Personally, I think I'm getting the better deal with Blockbuster. Of course, once BB increases my rate, I will probably not use any service and go back to just watching boring Saturday Night Live on the weekends. :-)

To the "reviews..."

Frozen. This movie was slow. It started out slow. It continued to be slow. It ended slow. I know it's a movie but there is no way that a ski resort would not make doubly sure that there are no people on the ski lift before shutting down. It was predictable on how/when the people were going to get stuck. It was further predictable on what the fate of at least one of the people was going to be even though it ended up being two. I don't know much about skiing or how to ski but I would think that someone would be dressed a little more warmly than the first "victim." I also don't understand why they didn't put up the hoods of their jackets to get/stay warm. I found myself saying, "Why don't you put yo' hood up dumb asses!?" One of the best and freakiest parts of the was when the guy jumps from the lift chair and his legs break/shatter. That was pretty cool and gross at the same time. Something I didn't get was when the broken-leg guy yells up to his friend about being careful on trying to monkey-bar the lift cable. He says, "Be careful. Those cables are razor sharp!" Why would these cables be razor sharp? Is it a side effect from being constantly run through the wheels of the lift apparatus or what? I need to know. I may have to Google this when I have time and can remember to. To me, this movie is a pass.
Exam. This movie was also a slow starter. It takes place basically in one room. I don't get how a corporation could allow the shit that went on in the room near the end of the movie but I guess I shouldn't question A MOVIE. Also, when there is only one question and you really don't know what the question is, big deal. It's just downright polite to answer someone when they ask, "Are there any questions?" I get the premise of the movie and how people feel like they have to solve problems or some shit. Personally, I think I probably would have kept quiet and bade my time for the 80 mins. It may have not been the "answer" but it would be better than making up answers or what I thought the interviewers wanted me to do. This movie too is a pass.
Unthinkable. This movie is not what I expected. I thought it was going to be about something else because I didn't read the synopsis or anything. I think Samuel L. Jackson speaks the same in almost all his roles. He either is loud or very loud. He's always yelling at people or talking to people with hostility. Other than that, I thought he did a very good job in this role. Carrie-Anne Moss has always been my leather/latex clad hottie. She's attractive without all the make up and highly doable. I've had a thing for her since she kicked ass in The Matrix. She did a pretty good job in her role as well. I hate movies like this though that end without a real ending. We don't know if there was a 4th bomb or not. Where was Carrie-Anne going with the terrorist dude's children and will they grow up hating America and follow their father's terror-laden footsteps? I do agree that the steps Jackson's character took is fully necessary. If the "terrorist" isn't going to be humane, why should the American government or any government be? Give respect and forgiveness for someone who does not reciprocate? I think not. I still think this movie is passable but I don't think it's a total disappointment.
Octane. There is absolutely nothing positive I can say about this movie. Actually, I can. This movie positively sucks dirty ball sacks! This seemed like it was trying to be a British Fast-&-Furious-type movie and it came up way, way short! The acting was poor. The female characters lacked interest and attraction. I think it should have stayed with its British title (I think) of Dolphins. The best part about this movie was the suped-up Ford Capri which looked like a Chevy Nova. Oh, bugger! You can probably write your own script and it would be better than this movie. I'd definitely pass on this one.
The Runaways. This movie actually wasn't too bad. It wasn't full of excitement, suspense, and intrigue but it was a good story about the starts of Joan Jett. Personally, I thought Kristen Stewart was better looking in this movie than in the Twilight series. Maybe it was the hair. Maybe it was the fact that she wasn't brooding and whining all the time. I don't know. It was the first role I've seen her in where she didn't act the same or similar to all the other roles. Dakota Fanning looked pretty good too. I feel gross saying that since I think she was playing at 16-yr-old and she is only 16 or 17 herself. I think it was the feathered hair and that she didn't play a typical role she's known for: cute, little big-eyed girl. I learned a few new things from this movie like who Cherie was and that Lita Ford was not just Lita Ford. She was part of The Runaways. Interesting to me but maybe not others. Overall, I think the movie was good. It was a biography of sorts and as such I think it did a good job without being boring.
The Girl Who Played With Fire. I was reluctant to continue my viewing of the series of "The Girl Who (With)..." movies. After watching the first movie, I wasn't impressed. In fact, I was left wondering what the hoopla was with this craptastic movie. My expectations were much lower for this movie but I found myself pleasantly surprised. This 2nd movie didn't seem as didn't feel like it was shot on old 35mm film or something or like a VHS camera. Again, this could be what the original movie was going for but the slow story line and crappy acting didn't help better the movie.

I think the Lisbeth has gotten better looking since the last movie. Again, maybe that's what they were going for in the first but I don't know. She had better hair. She seemed more interesting and I think her acting has improved. The overall acting and story line seemed much better to me as well. Unlike the first movie though, I had to read the subtitles because watching instantly on Netflix did not provide me with the subtitle option for English.

I don't like the way it ended but I do understand it is a series so I'm accepting it. I think I will probably Netflix the next one (...Kicked the Hornet's Nest?) because I think I saw it available on instant play.

That's my experience so far with Netflix. I will continue to try and instantly watch as much as I can before I decide to cancel. Again, if I can't get the new releases I want to watch, then there is no reason for me to get Netflix. So far, I think it's overrated. Granted Blockbuster has fucked over a lot of people and I think that's why people hate it...kind of like Windows versus Macintosh. I've heard people say, "Dude, you got to get Netflix. It's so much better than Blockbuster." It makes me wonder what the hell these people are talking about. Maybe it's because I've been on BB for so long that price-wise I'm better off. I don't know. I personally don't see the advantage when I can get my DVDs (3 at a time for $19.99) and then exchange them at the store for three more compared to the same exact plan at Netflix (3 at a time for $19.99) and no store exchanges.

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