Using discovery sites to navigate Netflix

Despite containing many excellent films, it is often difficult to find anything to watch on Netflix. The tools available on the site don’t make it easy to discover the many wonderful movies hidden within its catalog.

I know there are good movies because I can find them when using websites devoted to searching Netflix. The best of these sites offer strong filtering options as well as lists that break the movies down by genre.

I have been using Instantwatcher for several years. On the home page you get a list of the most popular Netflix movies and notable new additions to the Netflix library. The ability to browse sublists, such as New York Times critics’ picks, is helpful.

New to the mix is A Better Queue, which combines strong filters with a movie’s Rotten Tomatoes’ score. This may be the best site for discovering movies by genre and the Tomatometer score is a reliable predictor of quality.

Can I Stream.it? is worth noting because it lets you search several sites, including Amazon, Hulu, Crackle, YouTube and Netflix. This is a good option when you don’t know where a movie is streaming. It also shows pay-per-view options when they are available. The site also makes it easy to browse the most popular streaming movies on each service.

It’s simple to click from each of these services back to Netflix where you can start your movie. Can I Stream.it? and Instantwatcher offer additional features, such as watch lists, if you create an account.

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