When I first experienced the Empty Nest in the late 90s I had more time to watch movies. My older daughter was a bit of a cinephile, and I was fascinated when she and her friends would see a film on it's opening weekend. I liked movies, but did not consume them as voraciously as she. As my idle hours increased this changed. I got used to going to the cinema by myself and trips to the video store were frequent. In 2002 my daughter started talking about something called Netflix. I was skeptical of getting DVDs in the mail, but she signed me up as a birthday gift. And what a gift it was! As I merrily scrolled through the library, adding films to my queue, I realized that many titles I tried to find at the video store or the library were now at my fingertips from the comfort of my home. In no time I eased into a routine of renting 3 movies a week. Quite a value and great entertainment.
My other form of movie consumption was the cinema. Every weekend I would follow my daughter's lead and head to that room in the dark to see the latest releases. From big studio blockbusters to art house gems, I was a consumer. If the reviews on a film were so-so I would put the title in my Netflix queue for a low risk, high value viewing at home. Over time, I learned how to get the latest releases and classic gems delivered to my door.
A few years ago, I was approached to be part of a group to promote the newly branded Netflix service dvd.com. Swag arrived at my door and reward points could be earned by posting on social media and participating in activities.#DVDNation #ad I was even fortunate enough to meet the people in this Directors group on a visit to one of the Netflix distribution hubs. Seeing the process of how they turned around thousands of DVDs a day was fascinating. We joked about who had the most movies in their queue and reveled in the joy of our mutual love of film and physical media.
When we went into lock-down in March, the closing of theaters made sense. Though I understood, it left a void in my film world. The comfort that I took in my Netflix subscription was valuable. Movies delivered to my house? Sweet! Since I had been to the hub and knew that they sanitized the discs, I was not worried about exposure. The USPS handled the deliveries like a champ. At first, I leaned toward light fare and comedies, but I was feeling and unsettled restlessness. Renting the 1927 film Wings taught me a lesson. I found comfort in a film made over 90 years ago. The themes of comradery and loyalty, along with some amazing cinematography was very comforting. Then the movie Auntie Mame (1958) was recommended as a movie to watch with the family. Once again I was comforted by a film of a certain age. The movies kept coming and I kept finding satisfaction in films from the 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s. The best part was never leaving the house to get them. The service from the dvd.com hubs and the USPS has been flawless. I have never appreciated their services more. Since March, I have made sure to write my thanks to both the USPS and Netflix on the return envelopes. I hope they know how sincere those messages are. If you love movies DVD.com is the way to go with the best DVD library around and unbeatable service. Thanks so much to Netflix!