I stumbled on this silly little webapp, NetFlix History Analyzer. Here you can enter in your NetFlix rental history to see, for example, how much you have spent/saved by using NetFlix. I wasn’t particularity interested in that, but as I can’t avoid any pointless statistic that are sent my way, I did like this part:
Here’s some more about your renting habits…
* You kept each rental for around 12 days on average.
* The longest you kept a single DVD was 117 days.
* You rented about 5 DVDs each month.
* You’re not taking full advantage of your current plan. You could be renting 13 DVDs each month.
Sure, as we barely get one a week, keep them for nearly two weeks on average and kept one for 4 months, maybe we aren’t getting the most from this… But I like the convenience and gimmickry of NetFlix, so even though we could certainly go out and rent a dvd every week without it, we aren’t going to get rid of it… I’m just saying…
Speaking of things I’m just saying, As I haven’t been able to get around to catching up with my backlog I will just jot down some movies from the last few months…
1) We watched a CIA movie, The Good Shepard. Though it had a cast I could do normally without (um… Matt Damon, Angelina Jolie, Alec Baldwin? Ekk!) they actually did fine jobs, which, coupled with the good cast members (De Niro, Michael Gambon, William Hurt, among others) made it a respectable and involving movie. The (truish?) story of the CIA told via a young fellow who gets involved with the Company when it is formed. It is an engaging and serious film and Damon plays a serious workaholic spy officer who puts his family and everything else on the backburner as he seems to be involved in every major event of the CIA for decades. I liked its quiet pace and the only problem that I had (as I barely recognized Jolie) is that it made me think of Breach, which I liked better (but probably just because of Chris Cooper).
2) Primary Colors. I always find this to be an entertaining film. It is basically the story of Bill Clinton’s first presidential campaign. Well, not really the story of the campaign so much as the story of the personality of Bill Clinton at the time of the campaign… And the story of his handlers trying to keep the scandals under wraps, or at least in check. Told through the vehicle of an idealistic fellow (Adrian Lester) who joins the campaign only to find out that there isn’t much room for idealism. John Travolta does a good (though generally comes across as corny) portrayal of Clinton, as Emma Thompson (as Hilary) and Kathy Bates are both good, but the highlights are Larry Hagman and Billy Bob Thornton… Though Billy Bob does get carried away at times, they are the most compelling characters of story.
3) The Darjeeling Limited. I wasn’t sure what to expect from this. As I’ve said before, each of Wes Anderson’s film has been better than the previous one so I was curious to see what he would follow up The Life Aquatic with, as it is one of my favorite movies of recent times. The Darjeeling Limited is certainly cute and clever and witty and all of that. It also feels very Wes Anderson, but it feel like Wes Anderson not trying too hard and it didn’t really move me. The story of three brothers traveling across India to visit their mother, at heart it felt more like a first movie, only coated with much more money and the clever design and cinematography of Anderson’s films. The characters didn’t interest me, the story didn’t particularly interest me, the soundtrack wasn’t as good as I might have expected and it wasn’t too interesting. But it does have its visual merits, and a couple of genuinely funny and/or touching scenes, but not something I’d probably watch more than once.
4) We also watched Control. A biopic of Ian Curtis from Joy Division, based heavily on his wife’s memoir. It was pretty good, but we watched it right about when we watched Joy Division, which made for an interesting pair. The documentary is certainly better, but after watching it and hearing many aspects of Ian’s life referenced, it did add some depth to follow it up with this movie as it thoroughly cover his depression, his epilepsy, his personal troubles between his ladies, the specifics of which weren’t really covered in Joy Division. And though I don’t know how similar this was to Deborah Curtis’ book, if it was at all then she must have been quite fair minded about it, as the relationship between her and Ian seems quite honest and believable.