What to stream: ‘Women Talking’ on Prime Video, a ‘Luther’ sequel on Netflix, ‘History’ according to Mel Brooks on Hulu, ‘Perry Mason’ returns on HBO Max

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, Disney+, Amazon Prime, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …  

Women Talking (2022, PG-13), Sarah Polley’s screen adaptation of the novel by Miriam Toews, gives voice to a group of women in an isolated Mennonite community who have gathered to decide their future in the wake of years of systematic abuse. It is a gentle and often poetically beautiful film, set against an idyllic, sun-kissed prairie landscape, for such a traumatic subject and Polley lets the words and the passions of her ensemble carry the weight of their ordeal and their decision—the first they have made for themselves in a society that won’t even let women attend school. Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, Jessie Buckley, and Judith Ivey lead the superb ensemble and the film earned Oscar nominations for best picture and adapted screenplay. (Prime Video)

Idris Elba returns as the brilliant but tormented police detective in Luther: The Fallen Sun (2023, R), a feature-length sequel to the British crime drama that ended in 2019. The film opens with DCI John Luther in prison and a flamboyant serial killer (Andy Serkis) taunting him while terrorizing the city, which prompts Luthor to escape to exact his own justice. Cynthia Erivo costars as the DCI assigned to track Luther down and series creator Neil Cross writes the screenplay of this gloomy, dark crime thriller. (Netflix)

In a less serious vein, Mel Brooks brings a sequel 40 years in the making with History of the World, Part II (TV-14), a limited series sketch comedy that uses juvenile humor and raunchy jokes to lampoon historical events. Wanda Sykes, Nick Kroll, and Ike Barinholtz cowrite and costar with a guest cast that includes Jillian Bell, Danny DeVito, David Duchovny, Josh Gad, Natalie Morales, Kumail Nanjiani, and Sarah Silverman. You can also stream the original History of the World, Part I (1981, R). (Hulu)

In the second season of Perry Mason (TV-MA), the private eye turned struggling lawyer (Matthew Rhys) defends two Latino brother accused of murdering the son of an oil baron and ends up in the midst of a conspiracy involving the demolition of a neighborhood. Juliet Rylance and Chris Chalk complete his legal team as Della Street and Paul Drake, both reimagined for this noir-inflected show set during the Depression. New episodes on Mondays. (HBO Max)

Vicky Krieps won the acting award at Cannes for playing Empress Elizabeth of Austria in Corsage (Austria, 2022, not rated, with subtitles), a fictional drama about the beloved monarch as she turns 40. The offbeat, sometimes eccentric portrait explores her struggle with the restrictive expectations of her position and her desire to expand her world. (AMC+)


Brad Pitt travels the world searching for a cure for the zombie virus in World War Z (2013, PG-13).

True stories: the three-part docuseries MH370: The Plane That Disappeared (TV-14) delves into the still unexplained disappearance of the 2014 Malaysian airliner.

International passport: a woman inherits a house on a Croatian island in the romantic comedy Faraway (Germany, 2023, TV-MA, with subtitles).

International TV: Divorce Attorney Shin: Season 1 (South Korea, TV-MA, with subtitles) follows a pianist-turned-lawyer who will do anything to win.


Kerry Washington plays a single mother and Delroy Lindo is her father, who moves in after being released from prison, in the sitcom UnPrisoned: Season 1 (TV-MA).

A young actress (Maika Monroe) is unnerved by a stranger (Burn Gorman) while a serial killer stalks the city in Watcher (2022, R).


A single mother (Daisy May Cooper) on the margins of society struggles to give her daughter a stable home in the British dramedy Rain Dogs: Season 1 (TV-14).

House Party (2023, R) remakes the 1980s hip-hop comedy as a crazy money-making stunt by two house cleaners at the mansion of a client: LeBron James.

Amazon Prime Video

Based on a true story, The Silent Twins (2022, R) stars Letitia Wright and Tamara Lawrance as sisters who create their own, private fantasy world to escape the reality of their lives.

Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt lead The Magnificent Seven (2016, PG-13) in the recent remake of the classic western.


A teenager (Peyton List) is stuck in the afterlife in School Spirits: Season 1 (TV-MA), a high school drama with a supernatural twist.

A frustrated housewife (Ginger Gonzaga) discovers her husband is a spy in the action comedy True Lies: Season 1 (TV-PG), developed for TV by Matt Nix.


True crime: the two-part documentary Who Killed Robert Wone? (not rated) reexamines the unsolved murder of a Washington D.C. attorney.


James Purefoy and Michael Kenneth Williams star in the American crime drama Hap & Leonard: Complete Series (2016-2018, TV-MA), developed for TV by filmmakers Nick Damici and Jim Mickle from the novels by Joe R. Lansdale.

Acorn TV

The police sergeant (Conleth Hill) of a tiny Irish town unearths the secrets of his community while investigating his first murder in Holding: Season 1 (not rated).


The limited series The Confessions of Frannie Langton (not rated) follows the odyssey of an enslaved woman (Karla-Simone Spence) from a Jamaica plantation to the London mansion of a celebrated scientist (Stephen Campbell Moore).

Richard Griffiths is a police detective who retires to run a bakery while continuing to solve murders in Pie in the Sky: Complete Series (1994-1997, not rated).

The Criterion Channel

The documentary Loving Highsmith (2022, not rated) looks at the work and the private life of American writer Patricia Highsmith through her diaries and notebooks.

Fruit Chan’sMade in Hong Kong (Hong Kong, 1997, not rated, with subtitles), a drama set in the city’s underworld and shot on a shoestring budget, was the first Hong Kong independent film released under Chinese rule. A decade earlier, Wayne Wang’s neo-noir thriller Life Is Cheap . . . But Toilet Paper Is Expensive (Hong Kong, 1989, not rated, with subtitles) married American indie filmmaking with the Hong Kong New Wave.

Michelle Yeoh Kicks Ass” celebrates the career of the Oscar-nominated actress with eight films from her career as an action star, including her breakthrough films Police Story 3: Supercop (Hong Kong, 1992, R, with subtitles) opposite Jackie Chan and the Oscar-winning Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Hong Kong, 2000, PG-13, with subtitles). In contrast to the splashy action movies, see Ann Hui’s drama The Stunt Woman (Hong Kong, 1996, not rated, with subtitles), an unglamorous look at life in the Hong Kong film industry.

Roku Channel

Most Dangerous Game: New York (TV-MA) continues the action series with a new target (David Casteñeda) of a deadly manhunt. Christoph Waltz returns as the organizer. Free with ads.

The weekly column is featured in The Seattle Times, The Spokesman-Review, and other newspapers.


Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. He writes the weekly newspaper column Stream On Demand and the companion website, and his work appears at RogerEbert.com, Turner Classic Movies online, The Film Noir Foundation, and Parallax View.

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