What To Watch: 02/19/2021

Today is one of those Fridays that drives home the pandemic movie experience as two highly regarded films hit streaming services today–including a possible leading Oscar contender starring Academy catnip Frances McDormand. In addition to those two, a prestige drama starring Lily Rabe and Amy Brennaman that was supposed to start on TNT finds itself a Prime streaming home. So, we suppose what we’re saying is Happy Streaming Friday! By the way, fun fact: the picture of the late Patrice O’Neal below has the tallest building in his adopted state behind his right shoulder.

Tell Me Your Secrets [Amazon Prime]
Lily Rabe, Amy Brenneman, and Hamish Linklater star in a thriller about a serial predator. Your mileage may vary: the series shares a producer with Big Little Lies and The Undoing, which I thought was very upsetting!

Patrice O’Neal: Killing Is Easy [Comedy Central]
The abrupt passing of Patrice O’Neal left a huge void in the comedy industry, especially among friends and colleagues who were inspired by him. In this doc, Bill Burr has rounded up a few of them to help tell his story in hopes of introducing his unique, bold style to a new generation. Featuring Kevin Hart, Colin Quinn, Jim Norton and more.

I Care a Lot [Netflix]
A few years ago, John Oliver ran one of his best deep dives about human vultures who prey on healthy elderly people by making them their wards, putting them in homes and draining all their money. British writer/director has run with that story and added a bit of a Tarantino-twist where the villain played by Rosamund Pike commits the wrong old person in the form of Dianne Weist’s Jennifer Peterson

Nomadland [Hulu]
There is a certain appeal to the idea of living in an RV and just seeing America. These days given the financial perils we find ourselves this idea could become not just a romantic notion, but a matter of necessity. In Nomadland Frances McDormand plays a woman who leaves her small town and hits the road exploring the American West. There is a pretty good buzz about this one, including potential award nominations. This could be the perfect film for this moment. We are stressed and broke and ache for connection and this movie really has the potential to capture all of that.


  • The alternate history of For All Mankind continues for a second season as moon fights between the U.S. and Russia heat up as they have to both defend themselves against the ’70s–parachute pants pack a wallop in zero gravity. It’s on Apple+.
  • It’s not new to small screen availability, but another Oscar favorite is available for free for the next 24 hours as Aaron Sorkin screens his The Trial of the Chicago 7 for all of us to see on YouTube today.
  • Has there ever been a non-creepy boarding school? And so it is for the Spanish Netflix import series The Boarding School: Las Cumbres as a bunch of teens and witches(?) are trapped in the gothiest, creepiest institute-iest institute you’ll ever encounter. Seriously, the altogether ooky meter is cranked up to 11 from the first second of its trailer.
  • If you dig your creepy kids with a touch more dystopia in them, check out Netflix’s Czech import Tribes of Europa set in 2074, roughly a half-century after their version of technical singularity, where bands of children apparently roam the streets re-enacting the MGMT video (or, well, it does not look far from that).
  • Discovery+ cribs from its true crime arm ID network to revisit the story of The Chameleon Killer, Terry Rasmussesn, whose penchant for aliases (and of course murdering people) gave him that nickname.
  • As we love to do, we’re gonna end our round-up in the Lifetime-Hallmark Vortex where on LMN we have His Killer Fan which is either a period piece about Oscar Wilde being stalked and murdered by a sentient hand fan or an aspiring musician who loses her cool when her best friend starts dating her musical idol.

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