By Zach Goins
January 31, 2021
As the weather gets colder, the reasons to stay inside and binge-watch gets longer. Whether you’re looking for the perfect rom-com to set the mood on Valentine’s Day, the latest Oscar contenders, or your new favorite series to obsess over, we’ve got you covered.
Here are all the best new watches hitting Netflix, HBO Max, Disney+ and Hulu in February:
* = Original Streaming Content
The Yin-Yang Master: Dream of Eternity – Feb. 4 (Netflix)
After watching The Yin-Yang Master dominate the box office in China, Netflix couldn’t let this Chinese fantasy go unseen by the rest of the world, so the streamer swooped in and purchased the international distribution rights. Now everyone can check out the murder mystery with demonic serpents and magical warriors.
Malcolm & Marie* – Feb. 5 (Netflix)
Zendaya and John David Washington– need we say more? Two of Hollywood’s hottest rising stars teamed up with writer-director Sam Levinson (Euphoria) to deliver a black-and-white romantic drama for Netflix. Shot in just two weeks last summer under strict Covid-19 protocols, Malcolm & Marie is 106 minutes of the dynamic on-screen couple going at it as their relationship is pushed to its limits. As the trailer teases, “This is not a love story. This is the story of love,” so maybe give this one a test viewing before deciding it’s the ideal Valentine’s Day movie.
Space Sweepers* – Feb. 5 (Netflix)
A film ten years in the making, Space Sweepers is finally set to hit Netflix, and when it does, it will become the first Korean space blockbuster ever made. Set in the distant future, Earth has become uninhabitable, leaving nowhere to go but up. But in space, it’s not all sunshine and roses either. The lower class are forced to salvage and sell space debris in order to make ends meet, but when a gang of scavenging misfits– think Guardians of the Galaxy-type banter– pick up the wrong piece of junk, things get crazy. If you’re looking to mix it up and broaden your global film perspective this month, Space Sweepers is here to help.
To All the Boys: Always and Forever* – Feb. 12 (Netflix)
After four years and two films, Lara Jean’s love story is set to come to a close in the third and final chapter of the To All the Boys series– and just in time for Valentine’s Day. With graduation looming and the real world right around the corner, Always and Forever isn’t holding back as it ups the drama, romance, and production value in this globetrotting finale. Plus, if you’re really looking to binge, catch up on the first two films in the series on Netflix, too.
Judas and the Black Messiah – Feb. 12 (HBO Max)
Did someone say Oscar contenders? Judas and the Black Messiah would like a word. Telling the infuriating and heartbreaking true story of the U.S. government’s efforts to take down the Black Panther Party and its leader Fred Hampton, this film feels incredibly timely after the political and civil unrest of the last four years. Stars Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out) and Lakeith Stanfield (Sorry to Bother You) have already garnered high praise for their performances and are both expected to be contenders for acting nominations. Judas will become the latest of Warner Bros. and HBO Max films to hit the theaters and the streamer on the same day. It will remain on the latter for a month after its release, so don’t wait to watch it!
Nomadland – Feb. 19 (Hulu)
Writer-director Chloé Zhao’s film premiered last September at the Venice Film Festival and took home the top prize, before also earning the highest award at the Toronto International Film Festival. Since then, it’s had limited theatrical and streaming releases, but at last it will now be available to the masses on Hulu. Set in 2011, Frances McDormand stars as Fern, a laid-off factory worker suffering to survive. As a result, she packs up and travels the country living out of her van as a modern-day nomad, working odd jobs here and there to make ends meet– a struggle that hits close to home for many who are unemployed due to the pandemic. McDormand is a strong contender to take home Best Actress at the Oscars, and Zhao is in the middle of the Best Director discussion, which would make her the first Asian woman ever nominated.
I Care A Lot* – Feb. 19 (Netflix)
Rosamund Pike has already proven she can portray a ruthless villain in Gone Girl, but how about a lighter, but equally despicable bad guy? In I Care A Lot she does just that as a con artist who gains legal guardianship of elderly folks and drains them for all they’re worth, but this time around her target is connected to some very powerful gangsters. Also starring Peter Dinklage, this crime comedy is poised to be an under-the-radar hit this month.
The United States vs. Billie Holiday – Feb. 25 (Hulu)
We all know Andra Day has the voice of an angel, but she’s about to show the world what she can do on camera in this biographical drama. Based on the book Chasing the Scream, this film tells the true story of the U.S. government’s quest to silence the jazz singer’s revolutionary calls for justice and stifle her popularity. Directed by Oscar nominee Lee Daniels, The United States vs. Billie Holiday is getting a bit of awards buzz and could make a late push.
Tom & Jerry – Feb. 26 (HBO Max)
Relive your childhood glory days with this modern take on the world’s most iconic cat and mouse duo. This animation-live-action hybrid features cartoon versions of the titular animals inserted into the real world alongside the likes of Michael Peña, Chloë Grace Moretz and Ken Jeong. As Jerry makes himself at home at the hotel managed by Peña’s character, Moretz and the rest of the staff team up with Tom to rid the building of its mouse problem. As you can expect, hijinks ensue– mostly at Tom’s expense. While this one may be geared towards a younger audience, it’s sure to strike a chord with anyone who watched the old cartoons growing up.
WandaVision* – Every Friday (Disney+)
After an inadvertent year-long hiatus in 2020, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has triumphantly returned this year, and it all starts with WandaVision. The first of Marvel’s new television series to hit Disney+, WandaVision is unlike anything the superhero franchise has ever done before. Turning back the clock and replicating decades of iconic television style from the ‘50s I Love Lucy all the way up to a Modern Family-themed episode coming soon. Along the way, the typical MCU look and feel is mixed in as characters from across the franchises come together to try and figure out what’s going on inside Wanda’s fictional reality. New episodes hit Disney+ every Friday.
Good Girls (Season 3) – Feb. 15 (Netflix)
In case you missed out on the third season of Good Girls when it aired live on NBC last year, all 11 episodes are coming to Netflix this month. What started as a fairly simple supermarket heist has now evolved into murder, money laundering, and a lengthy list of transgressions, but despite the heavy subject matter, this crime comedy always manages to stay true to its comedic roots. With all 11 episodes streaming at once, get ready to binge.
Snowfall (Season 4) – Feb. 25 (Hulu)
Set in 1980s Los Angeles, Snowfall explores the crack epidemic and how it shaped the future of the city and its people. The new season begins in 1985 as President Ronald Reagan kicks off his second term and ramps up his “War on Drugs.” The first two episodes debut on FX on February 24, and thanks to Hulu’s next-day streaming you can catch up on the new season starting on the 25th and every following Thursday.
We Are: The Brooklyn Saints – Jan. 29 (Netflix)
This may not be a February title, but the late January release date compelled us to include it here to make sure you don’t miss it. Netflix has repeatedly struck gold with its athletic docuseries, from Last Chance U to Cheer, and they’ve done it again in We Are: The Brooklyn Saints. The four-episode series tackles a Brooklyn youth football program and the selfless and inspiring coaches determined to provide their players with a safe outlet to learn important life lessons.
The New York Times Presents: “Framing Britney Spears” – Feb. 5 (Hulu)
The latest episode in The New York Times and FX’s collection of standalone documentaries sets its sights on one of the music industry’s most infamous and misunderstood stars: Britney Spears. Known just as much for her head-shaving breakdowns as hit songs, what most casual fans don’t know about Spears is the details of her years-long legal battles against her father. Stuck in a court-sanctioned conservatorship, Spears has no control over the fortune she earned as a performer, but instead the decisions fall to her father. Through interviews with family friends, marketing professionals, and the lawyer fighting on Spears’ behalf, this documentary dives into all the intricacies of the legal battle.
There Is No “I” In Threesome – Feb. 11 (HBO Max)
With only one year left until Ollie and Zoe tie the knot and put an end to their promiscuity, the real-life couple is taking advantage of the final days of their open relationship– and it’s all on camera. That’s what happens when you’re a documentary filmmaker, your fiancé is an actress, and your lovelife is a drama worthy of the big screen. What started as a project meant to highlight alternatives to monogamy quickly evolves into a test of jealousy, trust and the strength of the couple’s love.
Mr. Soul! – Feb. 11 (CineOdyssey) + Feb. 22 (PBS)
Stevie Wonder. Muhammad Ali. Maya Angelou. What do they all have in common? Sure, they’re all Black icons, but they were also guests on Soul!, the first nationally televised Black variety program popular in the ‘60s and ‘70s. Hosted by Ellis Haizlip, it was estimated that more than 65% of Black households with acccess to the show tuned in on a regular basis. Now, Haizlip’s niece, Melissa, has crafted an award-winning documentary that explores her uncle’s creation and its cultural impact.
Pelé* – Feb. 23 (Netflix)
He’s one of the most iconic names in the history of soccer, and now Pelé’s story is getting the Netflix treatment in this documentary film. Featuring a mix of never-before-seen archival footage and new interviews with teammates and the legend himself, this doc tracks the footballer’s evolution from superstar to global inspiration, all throughout a dramatic time in Brazil’s history.
Tiger* – HBO Max
Love him or hate him, there’s no denying Tiger Woods is arguably the world’s greatest golfer. Now, this two-part HBO documentary is here to tell the full story behind Woods’ ascension to the top– and his subsequent fall from grace. Earning comparisons to the Michael Jordan-focused The Last Dance, Tiger tells the story of one man’s quest for perfection and the cost associated with it.
The Little Things – HBO Max
The first of Warner Bros. 2021 releases to hit HBO Max, The Little Things provides a chilling and suspenseful murder mystery that will have true crime fans hook, line and sinker. Starring three Oscar winners in Denzel Washington, Rami Malek and Jared Leto, this crime drama is the definition of a slow burn, methodically building its suspense throughout. Washington plays a hardened veteran detective while his partner (played by Malek) is the young hot shot. Together they do their best to close in on an extremely unsettling serial killer suspect played by Leto.
Lupin – Netflix
This French mystery thriller has already cemented itself as the first binge-worthy show of the new year, and for good reason. Omar Sy stars as a professional thief out for revenge on the man responsible for framing his father, but we’ll have to wait until this summer to find out what ends up happening. The streamer dropped the show’s first five episodes in January, but part two won’t arrive until later this year.
Night Stalker: The Hunt for a Serial Killer* – Netflix
Speaking of serial killers, trade in the fictionalized drama for the real deal with this Netflix true crime docuseries. From 1984 to 1985, Los Angeles was terrorized by Richard Ramirez, a serial killer dubbed the Night Stalker. Unlike most killers, Ramirez’s crimes were patternless— not targeting any specific subset of victims— which meant anyone could be next. This four-episode series dives into the multiple cases with interviews and accounts from survivors, family of victims, and the law enforcement officials responsible for tracking down the killer.
Freaks and Geeks – Hulu
Paul Feig and Judd Apatow’s cult comedy classic is finally going mainstream on Hulu. Despite only lasting on NBC for one season in 2000, Freaks and Geeks has long been praised as one of the best television shows of all time, and it’s responsible for helping launch the careers of stars like James Franco, Seth Rogen, Jason Segel and Linda Caredellini.
In this article
- disney plus
- Framing Britney Spears
- Freaks and Geeks
- Good Girls
- HBO Max
- I Care A Lot
- Judas and the Black Messiah
- Malcolm & Marie
- Mr. Soul!
- Night Stalker
- Space Sweepers
- The Hunt for a Serial Killer
- The Little Things
- The New York Times Presents
- The United States Vs. Billie Holiday
- The Yin-Yang Master: Dream of Eternity
- There Is No “I” In Threesome
- To All the Boys: Always and Forever
- Tom & Jerry
- We Are: The Brooklyn Saints