Surely set to please subscribers in the UK, Netflix has set about communicating its latest content update. Coming soon are titles such as Squid Game: The Challenge, Uncharted and Batman: The Animated Series. However, the headline act in the month of the recent Netflix price hike? 1998’s The Negotiator.
An American action thriller film directed by F. Gary Gray, The Negotiator stars Samuel L. Jackson and Kevin Spacey as Chicago police lieutenants who are expert hostage negotiators. Jackson’s Lieutenant Danny Roman finds himself falsely accused of embezzling funds from a police pension fund. The set up is so believable, that he is forced into extreme measures to prove his innocence. Roman takes hostages in police headquarters to buy time and plan his strategy, demanding that Spacey’s Lieutenant Chris Sabian be brought in to mediate with him as an army of cops threatens to attack, and a media circus ensues.
The film was released in the United States on 29th July, 1998. It received generally positive reviews from critics, and grossed $88 million USD worldwide. It’s most certainly a welcome addition to the Netflix content catalogue. However, is it really the title the company expects to soften the blow of the recent price increase? Especially when it can readily be purchased for less than the price of one month of Netflix.
Original Netflix Content Needs Funding
Netflix has stated that the price increases are to fund the creation of new and original content. That’s a reasonable argument, as costs are rising across the board. However, Surely it would’ve made more sense for the first subscriber communication post-price hike to have been a little more enticing? Netflix’s model is not like Xbox Game Pass. You are not penalised by leaving the service and rejoining later. You’re not going to miss out on any bonuses, nor will you be unable to benefit from a long-term subscription discount.
Netflix’s content catalogue is certainly in need of modernisation at this point. But that content takes time to produce. It’s hard not to see a situation developing where those who continue to subscribe are paying for this content only for others to rejoin for a month here-or-there when said new content arrives.