A large portion of Netflix reviewers are bipolar. They have to be. Why else rate every single movie you see either 1 star or 5 stars and nothing in between? Are anyone’s preferences actually that black and white?

I find it exceptional, especially considering nearly 90% of the movies I watch fall between the 2-4 star rating. It’s only once in a great while a movie is so bad or so good that it demands–what I consider the two extremes–a 1 or 5 star rating.

A 1-star movie must be the perfect storm of awful acting, schlock writing, inept directing, and crap quality lighting. Add to this sub-par set design, makeup, and wardrobe and yes, then you may have a 1-star movie.

But the geniuses that review movies on the Netflix website regularly bestow movies such as A Serious Man, Kick-Ass, and Shutter Island with an ill-conceived 1-star rating. Usually with the brilliant assessment, “Worst Movie I’ve ever seen.”


Yes, I understand the concept of personal preferences. I would never claim that a person has to like a film, no matter how much I might love it. Opinions differ. But I’d think there would be some sort of consensus that a well made movie–even if you don’t particularly enjoy the subject matter–should rise above the lowest possible rating simply based on competent film making.

But then that would make too much sense.

Perhaps these reviewers are Roger Ebert wannabes, here to give us either a thumb up (5-stars) or a thumb down (1-star). I’d point these reviewers to Roger Ebert’s website where he writes thoughtful reviews in which he designates a star rating (1-4). Further, I’d ask them to scroll through the list of reviews to see how many 1-star ratings appear. Of the current crop of 50 reviews, they’d find only one, for The Last Airbender.

I could make some far-fetched connections to these reviewers and the state of our society as a whole. Our resistance to meeting halfway on important issues in government and our inability to open our minds to change.

But I won’t do that. (Wink).