Let me sing the praises of Netflix...
I had Netflix once before, for more than a year, and I think I had the last three movies in my posession for six months before I finally sent them back and canceled the account. For some reason, keeping up with the movies felt too much like homework. That's sort of the reason I no longer subscribe to the New Yorker, Sports Illustrated or Entertainment Weekly. I'm just reading Real Simple from Thanksgiving and National Geographics from 2004 (I grabbed one from the magazine basket to take to the doctor's a few weeks ago, and found myself reading that famous prophetic hurricane article. I believed wholly that I was reading about Hurricane Katrina until I got to the word "yet."). How could I possibly keep up with weekly magazines?
Oh, sorry, there's that digression habit again...
Back to Netflix. Al and I decided we would give it a try. And since we signed up just months ago, I have seen more of the movies one is "supposed" to have seen than I did during the entire four years I hung out with the film geeks (if any of said geeks are reading this, dude, you know I consider geek to be a compliment).
Among others: Cool Hand Luke, the Godfather trilogy, Streetcar Named Desire, Network, Taxi Driver, Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid. I love the way one movie leads to another through recommendations.
And I love the selection of foreign films, especially now that I no longer live near my beloved Ritz theaters. So, last night, Al was at work, and I watched White aka Trois coleurs: Blanc), the second movie in Kzysztof Kieslowski's Three Colors Trilogy (having watched Blue, with Juliette Binoche, a few weeks ago).
I loved it. I am sure more schooled critics than I have written volumes about these movies already, so I won't even try to talk like a film scholar. The way I see it, if I start to wish I had better shoes and a jacket on because it's raining in a movie, then it's a damn good movie. White was well-acted and as captivating as Blue, although they are two totally different films in style, acting, story and characters. And the ending caught me totally off-guard (totally changing my concept of what the movie was all about and rearranging my sympathies for the characters. In fact, my sympathies have been rearranging themselves ever since, back and forth and inside out). Blue was hauntingly beautiful, lovely, sad, and ethereal with underlying strength. White was dirty, gritty, human, tough, and dark (funny enough).
And I am not dissing Hollywood, but there are two great things that are often different in foreign films: even when they are gorgeous, the actors look real, and every second doesn't have to have music and/or perfect audio.
I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of Red.