What to Stream This Weekend: ‘Inventing Anna,’ ‘The Girl Before’

The best TV and movies coming your way this week
415

From young adult stories to Korean dramas and highly anticipated new Netflix originals like Inventing Anna, these are some of the biggest series and movies newly available to stream across the major platforms this weekend. We’ve got new titles this week across everything from Netflix to Disney+, Paramount+ and more.


Inventing Anna: Limited Series

In retrospect, it was probably a foregone conclusion that Anna Delvey’s story would end up as a juicy Netflix drama. This urbane, fashionable young woman smooth-talked her way into New York high society in the 2010s — a glamorous, Insta-famous European heiress who was nowhere, and then everywhere. As it turns out, the rich socialite was little more than a gorgeous liar, mixing Jay Gatsby-esque ambition with the only thing a con woman can offer the world: An enticing charade. Real name Anna Sorokin, her story inspired a New York Magazine article (“How Anna Delvey Tricked New York’s Party People,” by Jessica Pressler) — as well as the highly anticipated 9-episode Netflix series Inventing Anna, for which she’s played by Julia Garner. An actress of immense talent, especially when it comes to portraying strong yet deeply flawed women.

In fact, Garner’s performance in this Shondaland series might even seem a little reminiscent of the one for which Netflix subscribers know the actress best. That, of course, would be the fictional character of Ruth Langmore, the pint-sized, profanity-spewing young woman who steals almost every scene she’s part of in Netflix’s “Ozark.” A character who, while she might not have Anna’s money or fashion sense, is just as willing to do whatever it takes to find and grab hold of a life less ordinary. Even if she has to invent it. Streaming on Netflix February 11

Read our Los Angeles‘ Review of the show by Tracy Moore:
Inventing Anna Review: A Rorschach Test for How You Feel About the American Dream

The Sky is Everywhere

Apple TV+ adds to its small but growing film library on Friday with this adaptation of Jandy Nelson’s YA novel about loss, and grieving. Lennie Walker is a 17-year-old musical prodigy still coming to terms with the loss of her older sister. This is a story about young love, and navigating the aftermath of grief — especially when Lennie finds herself drawn to the charismatic new guy at school, a relationship that’s also complicated by Lennie’s relationship with her late sister’s devastated boyfriend. “My sister will die over and over again for the rest of my life,” Lennie says at one point in the novel. “Grief is forever. It doesn’t go away; it becomes a part of you, step for step, breath for breath. I will never stop grieving Bailey because I will never stop loving her. That’s just how it is.” Streaming on Apple TV+ February 11

The Girl Before: Limited Series

HBO Max has a book adaptation of its own dropping this week — a four-part limited series based on JP Delaney’s novel The Girl Before. Starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw and David Oyelowo, this Max Original “tells the story of Jane (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), who gets the chance to move into a beautiful, ultra-minimalist house designed by an enigmatic architect (David Oyelowo). There’s just one catch: The occupants must abide by his list of exacting rules.”

From there, Jane makes a shocking discovery about her predecessor. The two women’s timelines start to intertwine. And Jane starts to wonder … will she end up the same as the girl before? Streaming on HBO Max February 10

Forecasting Love and Weather: Season 1

No surprise, Netflix is doubling-down on the unprecedented success it enjoyed last year with Korean-language content (like “Squid Game,” the biggest Netflix series release ever), and following all that up this year with a little more than two dozen Korean titles. One of them is coming to the streamer this weekend: Forecasting Love and Weather. This is a rom-com series that looks set to offer the streaming equivalent of comfort food, in the form of a story about a woman who works at the Korea Meteorological Administration (the country’s national weather forecasting service). She’s straight-laced and keeps work and love separate – until she meets a handsome new colleague, who slowly wins her over. Presumably, this forecast calls for lots of longing glances, swoony moments and, eventually, love. Streaming on Netflix starting February 12

Snowdrop: Season 1

While we’re on the topic of K-dramas, Disney+ is debuting a much-anticipated series this week for US subscribers, following its initial rollout internationally. The cast of Snowdrop includes Jisoo, a member of the hit K-pop girl group Blackpink, and it tells a fictional story about a dark period in South Korea’s past — when demonstrations by student activists ultimately paved the way for democratic reforms. Snowdrop courted a considerable amount of controversy in its home country, however, for telling a story of star-crossed lovers that includes Jisoo’s college student character as well as that of a North Korean spy. The spy is shown infiltrating the activist movement, which is the same spurious pretext that the real-world government used at the time for cracking down on activists.

Controversy aside, social media has been replete with mentions of US Disney+ subscribers using VPNs to stream this show in advance of its debut here. Which speaks to the large audience of K-drama fans ready and waiting to stream it properly. Streaming on Disney+ February 9

I Want You Back

This romantic comedy being released on Friday through Amazon Studios stars Charlie Day and Jenny Slate as Peter and Emma, respectively. Total strangers at first, a quirky commonality quickly bonds them together — both of them having been unceremoniously and abruptly dumped by their partners. From stalking their exes on social media, Peter and Emma eventually move on to plotting how to win back their erstwhile loves, while both are also frantic that being in their 30s means this might be one of their last chances at a happily ever after. Streaming on Amazon Prime February 11

The In Between

Paramount+ is ramping up its Originals library, with the latest additions including The In Between — a new movie debuting exclusively on the service this weekend.

The cast includes Joey King and Kyle Allen, who play Tessa and Skylar. The former is a teenage girl who’s moved from one foster home to another for most of her childhood. Needless to say, it’s left her a bit jaded and cynical about love. Skylar, meanwhile, is a senior in high school and a super-romantic who dies in a car accident — after, of course, he and Tessa develop feelings for each other. Tessa eventually comes to believe Skylar is trying to connect with her from the afterlife. From Paramount+: “Tessa attempts to contact Skylar one last time, in order to give their love story the epic ending it deserves.” Streaming February 11 on Paramount+


Stay on top of the latest in L.A. news, food, and culture. Sign up for our newsletters today.