‘Invented Anna’ Review: Shonda Rhimes’ Netflix Series on Anna Delvey

Anna Delvy’s twisty true story is a Netflix adaptation cluttered with lights, ideas, and a wild voice.

Stories of the rich and powerful are making money on TV. “The Succession” and “White Lotus” skewer the power of wealth with relentless satires. “The Crown”, “The Great” and “The Gilded Age” lounges in their lavish backdrops. “And Just Like That…”, “Gossip Girl” and “Billions” spend a lot of money on soap (with varying amounts and quality). More, because there is always more and always Yes already, but the success of many of these shows led to steady growth late in the year, which drew additional levels of scrutiny from critics as well as audiences. With wealth disparities causing so many problems in America, do we really worry when those with all the advantages are in trouble?

His best,”Invented Anna“Push this question forward by re-contextualizing it. Anna Delvey (real name: Sorokin) may or may not be rich. Anna Delvey (played by “Ozark”, Emmy Award winner Julia Garner) could be a German heir to a $65 million trust fund. Determining her worth is often tied to determining her legitimacy, which is just one of the false equivalents. Shonda Rhimes for troubleshooting purposes. Inspired by Jessica Pressler’s reporting, especially her 2018 New York magazine article about convicted fraudster, episode nine Netflix limited series examining who has access to life-changing financial opportunities, how genders are treated differently when it comes to their monetary ambitions, and when that ambition goes too far, the loss of balance in their punishment. Skimming through lengthy episodes – especially the first ones – can blur the commentary of the show, and clutter points of view, disturbing the “truth” and sheer repetition of scenes. And trust doesn’t help either. But there are damned criticisms in this messy retelling, and they’re (thankfully) not all about Anna.

However, Anna is more than happy to make herself the center of attention – starting with her voice. In one of the opening sequences that serves as a trailer for the show you started (please someone ask streaming services to stop asking for these things), Anna greets her audience through the voiceover of never again: “This whole story, the story where you’re about to sit on your fat ass and watch like a big lump for nothing, is about me. She continues to praise her hard work and triumphs – climbing the New York social ladder, starting her own foundation, taking selfies where Khloé Kardashian used to take selfies – when she rejects any assumption that she’s just another glorified “party girl”. Anna assures us she’s the real one, but even what we hear from the sans context sounds suspicious.

“Delvey is not an alias,” she said—only the last word sounds like “el-E-us.” “Party girl” becomes “tea girl”. I can’t even describe how she pronounces “Marriott.” Garner’s accent – a mix of German (where Anna grew up), Russian (where she was born), Gaelic (for reasons beyond logic), and, I swear, the sparks of the American South – could be the defining factor of “Invented Anna. ” Like hubbub around the Italian intonation sequence of “House of Gucci”, there will be some viewers who can’t take their eyes off the wild words that come out of Anna’s mouth. But where the inconsistency of the voice can cause viewers to lose patience, it also adds to the show’s two strengths: the mystery surrounding Anna’s intentions and the entertainment of its almost confidential conquest. hers.

If you joined after hearing Anna, then maybe you can survive the long and bumpy road of her story. Following Anna’s one-of-a-kind introduction to God, the series revolves around Manhattan magazine reporter Vivian Kent (Anna Chlumsky, as the fictional Pressler’s agent) uncovering the case of Anna and Take the time to meet her. But even then, “Invented Anna” doesn’t follow the simplistic view of a journalist slowly uncovering her story. Some scenes are told clearly from Vivian’s perspective, and others are told from her source memory. But the others seem to be coming from Anna, even if it’s clear that Delvey isn’t sharing this tidbit. The effect is mostly confusion, but Rhimes and her writing team move forward fast enough that it’s easier to give in than to sort it all out – unless you’re looking for real answers.

Invented Anna. Anna Chlumsky as Vivian Kent in episode 101 of Inventing Anna. Cr. Nicole Rivelli / Netflix © 2021

Anna Chlumsky in “Inventing Anna”

Nicole Rivelli / Netflix

In its own eager admission, “Inventing Anna” plays fast and loose with the truth. Each episode has the message on the screen, “This whole story is completely true, except for the parts that are completely fabricated.” (The series loves the imposing images flickering over lavish outfits, posh destinations, and the HGTV visual aesthetic in general. Instagram photos, tweets, headlines – most of the time, what was already.) says it doesn’t matter, it’s just a frame that mimics your phone screen, distracting you with twinkling lights.) Those who don’t want to read the original article or fact-check it for themselves when the series is over. It’s likely to be disappointing, but again, Rhimes’ crime drama isn’t dedicated to explaining its famous star. If anything, it’s a bit too eager to admit large parts of her will remain split or undisclosed. But what it lacks in unraveling details about Anna, it makes up for in revealing glimpses of her “friends”.

While maintaining a liberal approach to narrative composition, the episodes are outlined around someone very important to Anna. There’s Val (James Cusati Moyer), a fashion designer who befriends Anna early on and later proves her high-end taste. “Anna Delvey is the Queen of Bitch, but the way she does it makes her look like the Queen of Bitch for a reason,” he told Vivian. When he’s been used up and discarded, Chase (Saamer Usmani) takes his place at Anna’s side, flirting with her, paying her for fancy rides, and relying on her for help raise capital for his startup.

Nora Roberts (Kate Burton), a Manhattan janitor, and a few others arrive to add context to Anna’s activities, but “Inventing Anna” really finds its way in Episode 4, “A Wolf in Chic Clothing” – where Anna convinces Alan Reed (Anthony Edwards) to assist her with the bank, despite certain red flags – and Episode 5, “Check Out Time”, by interrogating the relationship of Anna with a cheeky hotel employee who becomes her soul mate, Neff Davis (Alexis Floyd). Both submissions are focused to the point of being one-sided, but their angles are concrete and thought-provoking. Was Anna a member of the boys’ club, or from a family familiar with money, would she face the same fate? And, amid all the lies, cons, and impositions, is it possible to make a genuine connection that inspires people in a positive way?

Over nine incredibly long episodes, “Inventing Anna” loses its strongest themes over and over again. The jamming structure can make staying engaged a chore, while the frantic pacing focuses on the movement, it never stops to ask if it’s talking to the audience. . Vivian’s personal arc only really comes into play when she captures aspects of Anna in herself (and don’t get me started with pro quizzes, though I expect Manhattan City New York magazine’s sister site, Vulture, lists all the ways Vivian’s work doesn’t reflect reality). Odds are “Inventing Anna” won’t have the lasting impact of the article that inspired it – like so many streaming series, it trades efficiency and power for length and reduce the duration. Still, there’s plenty to munch on, including some delicacies that haven’t been seriously unearthed in all the other stories of the rich and famous.

Class B-

“Inventing Anna” premieres Friday, February 11 on Netflix. All nine episodes will be available at launch.

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https://www.indiewire.com/2022/02/inventing-anna-review-shonda-rhimes-netflix-series-anna-delvey-1234697085/ ‘Invented Anna’ Review: Shonda Rhimes’ Netflix Series on Anna Delvey

Olly Dawes

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