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Carl Cravens

I'm perfectly happy searching and browsing Netflix' website... maybe if Laura told us what she finds inconvenient about it, we might have more specific advice.

Aron

Yeah, more specific info required.

One preliminary piece of advice. Use any site you please to find the movie you want then look at Netflix specifically for it.

i.e. Use IMDB.com, rottentomatoes.com, yahoo.com, or other more obscure ones. Hopefully one of the interfaces will suit you, and there shouldn't be too many movies that Netflix doesn't have.

If your problem is dialup speed, then buy a copy of Leonard Maltin or some other general movie review book. You might even find one that you can download and read from Amazon.

One thing I would definately NOT recommend is using the Blockbuster site. ;)

Aron

And for new releases I'd recommend.. no wait.. you got that one figured out.

papercut

One thing I do is search for critics lists of top ten movies or '100 greatest movies of all time'
type lists and the search for movies within those to find good flicks.

Patrick

I find doing searches along these lines works pretty well. I'm on an "Africa" kick lately:

intitle:review "historical drama" film africa

Which turned up:

http://www.newsreview.com/issues/chico/2003-07-31/film.asp

Which I just added.

Or maybe:

intitle:review "parker posey" africa film

It's fun, somehow, to have some randomness in there. I didn't actually find a movie with Parker Posey in it set in Africa with that last query (kind of a random thing to look for), but I found:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/arts/fridayreview/story/0,12102,1183547,00.html

Where she describes her favorite films, both of which I already own, but that's because she's my soulmate, duh.

I almost never *start* with sites designed for searching for movies. That bores me to tears. Just using a search engine is much more fun.

Love the site!

Fred

I suggest getting a brew of your choice sit down and start searching. After awhile you'll have more movies in your queue than you can see in years and the need to "find" more will go away.

Becky

Perhaps you could buy a copy of Halliwell's Film Guide 2004 (Halliwell's Film & Video Guide)
by Leslie Halliwell instead of using the Netflix site.

Movie Buff

Try out Sourcelight's Movie discover page

http://www.sourcelight.com/discover/login.php


You can get good recommendations here.


dave

I live and breathe at www.tlavideo.com. but then again, my main interest is gay films. i have found that the netflix browser only has a select amount of titles and a limited few. truly, to find the films you really want, you really have to use other search engines, write down what you like and then do a specific search on netflix.

it's the only way.

Manda

It's also handy to keep paper and pen at hand for when you're reminded of a film.

I've been watching "The League of Gentlemen" DVDs recently, and every time they mention a film homage in the commentary, I write it down and add it to the queue later.

Josh

I'm really enjoying the rottentomatoes and IMDB scripts posted here a few days back: http://www.hackingnetflix.com/netflix/2004/11/yet_another_net.html

Search on those sites, when you find something you like you just run the script and it brings you to the appropriate Netflix page!

I keep track of movies I hear about on my Treo smartphone, which syncs back to my Mac. Now that I think about it, it would be great if there was a slim web page or web applet that allowed me to put things directly on my Netflix queue. I'm able to do this with Amazon's Shopping Cart (and the wishlist syncs nicely via AvantGo, for immediate and offline access) so it would be nice to be able to do some of these same things with Netflix.

Usman

See if your local library system as this book: "Never Coming To A Theater Near You: A Celebration of a certain kind of movie"

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1586482319/002-0959145-6840853?v=glance

I checked it out of my library and it's got tons and tons of lesser known movies. After going through the book I had added 86 movies to my Netflix queue.

Wow, thanks for all the comments, folks. It seems that figuring out what movies you want to see through some other venue is the way to go, and I certainly already do that.

I'm a librarian and an information architect, so that's why I can be quite critical of search and browse systems that don't measure up. Here's just one specific example: Suppose I decide to browse Documentaries, and then I choose a subgenre to browse. All Netflix shows me is a page of movies and then a "next" button. It doesn't even tell me how many movies are in that subgenre! I find that appalling. Generally what I do is reverse engineer the URL, so if the URL ends in "&pageNum=2" I try adding a random page number like "&pageNum=26" and then I can get a rough idea of how many movies there are.

It would also be nice if it offered an alternative view without graphics that would list, say, 100 movies per page.

And, of course, it should allow me to search specifically by Title, Actor, Director, Studio, or Year.

Bill

I like Movielens for recommendations. Seems to do a much better job of picking stuff I like than Netflix recommendations. Plus it is some sort of research project at the University of Minnesota, so you're helping with the research by using the tool.

Only drawback is I end up entering my rating twice -- once for Netflix to keep track of what I have seen and once for Movielens for their recommendations.

movielens.umn.edu

Trey

I would have an interest in retrieving the last 50 movies entered into the Netflix database. The reason I would like this is because I typically watch my trailers on apple.com/trailers/ and they have new movies coming out that I'd like to add to my 'Saved' queue in Netflix, but when I search Netflix, it typically takes 2-3 weeks before those movies are actually entered into their system. I'd like to see what they've recently entered to see if they are the movies I'd like added.

djvipmz

I want to find that move to download

Mikael8tha

The problem is with searching the movies that are available to "Instatntly Watch".

Sure you can search imdb or any other site for movies but you would then have to go back to netflix to see if they have it for instant viewing...and they probably will not.

It would be very convenient if Netflix would provide an advanced search for, at least, their movies that are available for instant viewing.

From the hills of WV,
Mikael

Mikael8tha

At the very least, Netflix should allow you to search "2008" in "Watch Instantly" so that you could pull all movies available for instant viewing that were released in 2008.

Their site definitely needs a facelift. I'm sure it would go over much better than the recent Facebook Facelift!!!!!!!!

Jonas Brother

I think it would be nice to have a way to search for a keyword within a subcategory. Ex: if you go to documentaries, then historical documentaries, and you type in iran for example, then you are searching for the word iran in the whole website again, not in the subcategory of historical documentaries only.

Librarian in the woodwork

I'm with the librarian who posted in Nov 2004 ... is there any way to sort the browse results (say, by date? or alphabetically? or anything?)? is there any way to figure out why searching "Woody Allen" also pulls up results like "Woody Harrelson" and a movie called "Mr. Woodcock"? is there any way to find a specific title (try looking for "The Wrong Box" a great British comedy and you get 24,481 results)??

Ian Lewis

netflix doesn't want you to be able to search better for a reason. why, I'm not sure. but for ex. There is a large shoe website almost everyone knows about. You can choose what size shoes, what color, what brand, and so on they have about ten(10) relevent perameters to narrow down the choices. finding you the shoe you may want.
Could netflix fix it? Yes. Do they want to fix it? No, they like forcing their suggestions on us

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