For a service that has famously worked so hard to help you find movies you might like, Netflix is actually a little weak in the recommendations department.
Suppose, for example, you're trying to find something fun for the whole family to watch. By clicking your way into Netflix's Watch Instantly section, you can head to the Children & Family section, then filter the choices by one of a handful of categories: age, "animal tales," Disney, and so on.
But what if you want to narrow the selection to a particular range of years? And show only those movies that received an especially good rating? That's where A Better Queue comes in.
This clever site provides a few helpful filtering options for browsing Netflix's Watch Instantly library. First, you choose one or more movie genres; A Better Queue offers 19 of them, from Action & Adventure to Thrillers.
Then, using simple sliders, you can choose a range of years (between 1975 and 2012) and, best of all, a minimum Rotten Tomatoes rating. (For those unfamiliar with it, Rotten Tomatoes aggregates movie reviews from hundreds of critics.)
So, getting back to our example, let's say you're looking for family movies made before 2005 (you've seen everything made since then) that have a Rotten Tomatoes score of at least 80%. Presto: A Better Queue shows you everything Netflix has to offer. Click any of the results (which are presented with large movie posters) and you're instantly transported to that movie's page on Netflix proper.
A Better Queue can really take the hassle out of finding a movie to watch. Want more help with Netflix? Check out 10 Netflix Power Tools and How to Get the Most From Your Netflix Streaming Subscription.
Contributing Editor Rick Broida writes about business and consumer technology. Ask for help with your PC hassles at firstname.lastname@example.org, or try the treasure trove of helpful folks in the PC World Community Forums. Sign up to have the Hassle-Free PC newsletter e-mailed to you each week.