Netflix might use the all-powerful algorithm to shape the creative direction of the streaming service’s content and to decide which movies can get sequels and what shows will avoid the chopping block, but it’ll never be able to predict the titles that are going to end up dominating the Top 10 most-watched list.
It feels as though a film comes out left field almost every day to find itself among the most popular pics in the library, an honor that’s recently fallen to such a disparate bunch as Spanish action thriller Below Zero, Chinese fantasy blockbuster The Yin-Yang Master: Dream of Eternity, and box office bomb Men in Black: International. The latest overlooked title to find new life on the platform is Todd Phillips’ genre mashup War Dogs, which is still in second place in the rankings despite being added to Netflix eight days ago.
Very loosely based on a 2011 Rolling Stone article, War Dogs incorporates elements of the buddy movie, action thriller, raucous comedy and pitch black satire into the story of two self-made arms magnates who get a lot more than they bargained for after entering the dangerous and often very shady world of weapons trading.
War Dogs takes some big swings, and while a few of them land, it doesn’t quite manage to pull off the multi-genre balancing act, although Jonah Hill and Miles Teller play off each other brilliantly in the lead roles. That being said, it’s still exactly the kind of undemanding entertainment that always tends to do well with Netflix subscribers, and having already spent over a week nestled in the upper echelons of the Top 10 most-watched list, it isn’t showing any signs of coming down in the immediate future.