I finally got desktop effects working on my laptop. I installed the 9629 Nvidia driver from Livna, and added:
Option "ConnectedMonitor" "DFP"
to the Device section of /etc/xorg.conf
The effects are really cool looking, and quite useful too – transparent windows is good for when you want a fullscreen website open but want to be able to type in a terminal window, the zoom is nice too, wobbly windows is a little annoying, fades/minimises are MacOSX-ish and the 3D desktop cube is old. It’s still nice to see that the not exactly modern Geforce4 series can easily cope with alphas etc.
I just watched Half Light, which was quite clever, but very slow and boring.