Netflix's Napoleon Dynatime Problem

The company Netflix has a very sophisticated and accurate recommendation system.  They also have $1 million prize for anyone who can make it better.  One interesting thing is that apparently the movie Napoleon Dynamite is screwing up the Netflix’s rating system.  There’s a good article in The NY Times called “If You Liked This, You’re Sure to Love That” that discusses this, saying:

The reason is that “Napoleon Dynamite” is very weird and very polarizing. It contains a lot of arch, ironic humor, including a famously kooky dance performed by the titular teenage character to help his hapless friend win a student-council election. It’s the type of quirky entertainment that tends to be either loved or despised. The movie has been rated more than two million times in the Netflix database, and the ratings are disproportionately one or five stars.

Worse, close friends who normally share similar film aesthetics often heatedly disagree about whether “Napoleon Dynamite” is a masterpiece or an annoying bit of hipster self-indulgence.

It’s funny that movie can be so widely loved or hated.  I think it’s probably a generational thing with the younger you get the more you’re apt to like it.  Clearly, you either “get it” or you don’t

Other movies mentioned in the article that are causing the Netflix system problems and are equally hard to classify and polarizing are:

It’s an interesting list and to think about other movies that i’ve found to be divisive.  I can think of Grindhouse and Serenity.  What else?

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