Did you recommend Netflix?

I’m considering using Netflix but am a little reluctant starting up yet another monthly service. I love movies but rarely rent them. Mostly because I’m too lazy, don’t like supporting Blockbuster, and don’t want to deal with returning movies at a set time. So Netflix seems like a decent solution.

What I want to know is -

  1. How is their selection? They say they have over 35.000 movies and over 250 genres (there’s that many genres?). Have you had any trouble finding a movie or show that you’re looking for? Do they carry Criterion DVDs?

  2. I’ve read here in some forums about getting 5 movies instead of 3. I assume that you have to pay extra. I can’t find anything on their site that mentions this.

  3. Is $17.99 a fair price for this service? I know a lot of this depends on how many movies you watch a month. But I wondering are there very many hassles that you have to deal with? Broken discs? DVDs take a long time to show up? Any harrassing? If I order a multi-disc DVD show like I, Claudius, will they all show up at the same time? If not, is it possible that they might show up out of order?

I haven’t heard much bad about the service but I wanted to ask people here first before I commit to joining. Thanks for helping out :slight_smile:

Selection is great. I have only very rarely been able to think of titles that I wanted to see that Netflix doesn’t have.

That’s an upgrade to your standard membership, but given their push for more members they may not be offering it “right out of the box” – you might have to establish a good record with them to get the offer.

Absolutely fair. If you’re near a distribution center (I’m near the Maryland one) you can get a turnaround of two days. Sunday night my wife makes sure our queue has the right movies in it for the week. I drop off the movies I watched on Monday morning on my way to work, and we have movies in Tuesday’s mail or Wednesday’s at the latest.

In three years (and an address change from Ohio to Maryland) we’ve never had a disc get lost in transit either direction, nor has a DVD ever taken more than three days to get to us, even in Ohio. One disc in three years was unplayable and the replacement came as soon as they received the original back with the marked inside sleeve (the enclosed envelope comes with a “this DVD doesn’t work/is mislabeled/smells like tuna” checklist). As long as you check your queue before sending discs in, you will get them in the order you specified. If they are going to deviate from that order, you get an e-mail, and you can change your queue order to account for it (order comedies and action flicks until the next disc of Pride & Prejudice is in). We’ve never had problems that required the intervention of customer service, and our address change went over without a hitch. We mailed our last Ohio discs back after the change was official and new discs were waiting for us in Maryland.

I find the service fast and friendly. Compared to a Blockbuster location, you have fewer screw-ups, better selection, and can save money even if you only cycle three DVDs a week (12/mo, $1.50/rental). Surely you can watch one movie a week and two on the weekend, yeah?

1)At this point in time, they’re pretty much stocking every DVD released each week. Among this week’s selections are:

  • Craig David: Live in Costa Rica*,
  • The Brady Bunch: Season 1 *,
  • The Man Who Skied Down Everest*, and
  • New Getter Robo *.
  1. Full price list:
    8-at-a-time for $47.99
    Unlimited rentals - up to 8 movies out at a time for a flat monthly fee of $47.99.

    7-at-a-time for $41.99
    Unlimited rentals - up to 7 movies out at a time for a flat monthly fee of $41.99.

    6-at-a-time for $35.99
    Unlimited rentals - up to 6 movies out at a time for a flat monthly fee of $35.99.

    5-at-a-time for $29.99
    Unlimited rentals - up to 5 movies out at a time for a flat monthly fee of $29.99.

    4-at-a-time for $23.99
    Unlimited rentals - up to 4 movies out at a time for a flat monthly fee of $23.99.

    3-at-a-time for $17.99
    Unlimited rentals - up to 3 movies out at a time for a flat monthly fee of $17.99.

    2-at-a-time (4 rentals a month) for $11.99
    Up to 4 rentals a month - up to 2 movies out at a time for a flat monthly fee of $11.99

  2. Every hassle that Netflix currently has, Blockbuster Online is 10X worse. Responsiveness is totally dependent upon how quickly the post office can get dvds to and from netflix’s warehouse. Holiday weekends, movies take an extra day or two to get there, and they don’t seem to have anybody working in their warehouse on Saturday, but they almost always send out your next movie the same day they get your last one.

Finding out that the post takes too long to make it convinient for you is what the free 2 week trial is for.

In my years of netflix subscribing, they’ve delivered movies in an order different than my queue exactly twice, and both times it was a fairly rare DVD that wasn’t in stock at the top of my queue.

If a move spans two DVDs, they’ll send both to you at the same time, and it will count as one rental (at least, that’s what they did when I rented Godfather II). If you want, say both the movie DVD and the “special feature” dvd, then you have to rent them separately, and they each count one dvd towards your total. If it’s more like a TV series boxed set, then each DVD in the set counts as “one dvd”, but at least they have one button on the site for adding all the dvds to your queue at once (adding them in the right order).


I’ve been a subscriber to Netflix for almost three years and I’ve been pretty happy with them. I’m on the three-at-a-time plan, but they have various different levels, at different prices.

Their selection is their real strong point. They have many, many thousands of titles, including incredibly obscure ones. Like bclouse said, it’s quite rare that they don’t have something I want, if it exists on DVD at all. Every week they publish their list of new titles at this website:


Take a look at it as an example of what they carry and I think you’ll agree that it includes quite a variety.

As for the service, the specifics depend on where you live. But they have over 20 distribution centers, so chances are there’s one not far from where you live. I generally get next day receipt and delivery. That is, if I drop a movie in the mail on a weekday morning, I’ll have the next movie in my hands in two business days about 70% of the time. I’ll have it within four business days about 99% of the time. (Sometimes a movie I want has to be shipped from a more distant distribution center.)

Movies are occasionally lost in the mail, either on the way to me or on the way back. It’s never a big deal. There’s a way to inform Netflix about this on their website, and they just resend the movie. The same thing with DVDs that are damaged.

Overall, I’ve been pretty happy with them, as I said.


Sorry, that should have been, “Like Jurph said”. bclouse, you are the original poster, I know!


I recommend it. I like being able to go on the website and modify my queue as I hear about new movies. Sometimes when I get a movie, I’m busy or not in the mood to see it, so I’ve kept the DVD for weeks at a time, without any pressure to return it. I’ve rented obscure films that I heard about, sometimes finding that I didn’t like the movie and stopped it before seeing the whole thing. But that’s OK, because I’m not paying for each movie rental. I’ve received several new movies the same day they were released on DVD. And yes, the selection is very broad.

I highly recommend Netflix. We’ve been doing it for about three years, I guess. I had one film lost after I sent it off. I’ve had a couple that were not playable. The selection is great. Any films I have wanted they have had. Heck, I was even able to see Fritz the Cat for the first time a few weeks ago.

One question I have about Blockbuster: I know that they edit their films for content if you rent them in the store. Do they edit them for their through-the-mail service?

Are you certain of that? I’ve never heard of such a thing. Are you sure you’re not thinking of WalMart?

I use Blockbuster Online, and nothing I’ve received has been edited in any way that I could tell.

Well, here’s a couple of links I googled on the topic:



So, it may be that they don’t do the editing, but they do opt for edited for content versions. Now that I think about it, I can’t recall if the edited ones I’ve gotten were from Blockbuster or Hollywood Video. However, I know that the version of Requiem for a Dream I got from one of those establishments was edited, as was the version of Y Tu Mama Tambien, the latter significantly. I have a thing for Jennifer Connelly, and my friend was going on about the graphic scenes in Requiem for a Dream that she was in. I responded that, while I was pleased, I didn’t think they were all that graphic. He said, “Well, I thought the overhead shot of her and the other girl sharing the [marital aid] was pretty good.” I had seen no such shot.

However, in thinking it over, I can’t rule out that my own personal experience was from Hollywood Video, and not Blockbuster.

The selection is pretty amazing…the only movie they didn’t have that I wanted so far is “The African Queen”. But, then I looked into it and found that the studio hasn’t yet published it to DVD, so I can’t fault Netflix.

I’m very happy with the turnaround time in the mail. My wife mailed two DVDs back to Netflix on Friday, and we received the next two DVDs today (Monday) in the mail. That’s been pretty standard service. Your mileage may vary.

My favorite feature of Netflix is the Recommendations. When I add a movie to the queue it presents other movies that have something in common: either the genre, the director, a lead actor, or just another movie that a critic recommends. I always scan these lists looking for another movie to add to the list.

In addition, when you rate each movie it fine tunes a separate custom recommendation list for you.

Well, now I have to rent that.

One of the links you referenced mentions that many Blockbuster’s carry multiple versions of a particular film.

Looking at the selection, I see Blockbuster Online has a standard version and an unrated director’s cut of Requiem…. Perhaps your friend saw the director’s cut and you the standard version?

Great selection, fast turnaround and no hassle on the rare lost or damaged disks. What’s not to like?

Do you have to take the disks to a post office to mail them back or can you put them in a regular mailbox?

Pretty sure that that particular scene was a body double. There are plenty of other scenes of her in the movie, though, and the double is close enough that you can pretend it’s her. But I doubt that her career had slipped low enough that she was willing to go butt to butt with an extra.


You can put them in a regular mailbox. But, of course, you get them back sooner if you put them in an official box with an early morning pickup. Like the one at my workplace :smiley:

I loves me some Netflix. Never had any problems or hassles, usually send in my discs and have new ones two or three days later. On the very rare occasion that you get a scratched or damaged disc, you just send it back with the appropriate box checked, and they send you a new disc. To answer your question about Criterion movies, I tried entering “criterion” in their search feature and only came up with one hit: “The Killers: Criterion Collection”. But the search feature is really for actors, directors, etc., so I’m not sure if there’s a better way to find out if there’s more Criterion editions or not.

The variety is amazing. I’m actually using Netflix to catch up on tv series that I always meant to watch but never got around to seeing in their first run - Firefly, Babylon 5, Alias, Dead Zone, I caught up on with Netflix. Also my husband and I rent a fair amount of anime - Robotech, Wolf’s Rain, Akira, Cowboy Bebop, etc. I also have rented documentaries, concert dvds, classics, foreign movies…basically anything you can think of that’s been released on dvd, Netflix has.

As others have said, because I’m not paying by the movie, I never feel obligated to finish watching something if I’m not enjoying it, and I therefore rent lots of “experimental” things that I would never get if I had to justify a $3 up front payment.

My only problem (if you can call it that) is that I don’t know if I’ll ever finish watching everything on my queue - around 350 discs, at last check.

Thanks for the recommendations everyone. I took the plunge and joined this evening. The first DVDs should show up in a couple of days. Should be fun. I can already tell that rating movies will became addicting. :smiley:

I’ll add another voice to the go for it crowd. I loves me my Netflix. The only other thing I had to say was that I think they’ve stopped doing the check the box if it’s damaged or whatever. Now you go online to netflix.com/replacementdisc or something (it’s on the envelope) and pick what disc is bad and why it’s bad and they ship it out to you immediately. You don’t even have to wait until the bad disc gets back to them. Now that is service. In the 7 or 8 months I’ve had Netflix, I’ve only had two discs scratched so much they were unwatchable, and two discs that were lost in the mail, although those later turned up after my replacement discs came in.

I just joined Netflix recently. My only beef is that they don’t have a distribution center in my state, so it’s about 2 days there (occasionally 3) and about 2 days back (once in awhile, 1). Still, their selection is great. I ended up getting some back luck and did get a damaged disk and a disk 1 sent without disk 2 (Schindler’s List). On the latter, they noticed the day after it was sent and sent it right away. I requested an extra week of free trial, and they gave me 10 days.

Overall I’ll stay with Netflix for now. If I get a lot more damaged disks, maybe not, but they did send out the disk right away (without waiting for the old disk to come back) and since I had several other movies arrive too, I didn’t wait around for it too much. Plus, it was a very small scratch that just caused one scene to skip in the middle of the film - difficult to test for.

A lot of the older complaints were long waits for certain DVDs. My queue lists every title as available “Now”. I had one movie pop up as “Very Long Wait”, so I put it at the top of my queue to see how long it would be. It went out the next day when my DVDs got back.

FYI, you don’t have to do that anymore. You can now go right onto your account page and report the disk as damaged, and they’ll send out the replacement by the next day. So you don’t have to wait for the damaged disk to reach them before they’ll send the replacement anymore.