If you love to be reeled in by a great crime drama, Ozark is well worth a watch.
The Netflix hit series is a fantastical yet bewildering tale of a financial adviser Martin ‘Marty’ Byrde, played superbly by Jason Bateman. Marty is forced to move his family from Chicago to the Missouri Ozarks to launder $500 million for a drug boss, to ‘make amends’.
Wife Wendy sees actress Laura Linney quickly adapt to the dodgy dealings in the family’s new location like a duck to water. Like Marty, you’re never quite sure where her loyalties lie, with her husband or elsewhere.
The last three seasons have seen the family embroiled with drugs cartels, deaths, cover ups and all sorts of illegal casino-related activities, as well as an increasing interest from the FBI, in an edge-of-the-seat drama that offers more twists and turns than a dodgy politician’s monologue.
Ozark has received 14 Primetime Emmy Award nominations including Outstanding Drama Series, and lead actor and director Jason Bateman, who nabbed a win for his directing skills. He has also received two Golden Globe nominations for Best Actor and Best Television Series Drama.
The characters are beautifully crafted and real, with flaws and failings like all of us, terrible choices made by the lead protagonists (usually the lesser of two evils) are sometimes baffling, but often understandable.
Some of these story lines are gritty and can make for slightly uncomfortable viewing, often through the brilliant talent of Julia Garner, who won an Emmy for her fierce and feisty portrayal of Marty’s complicated, loyal and very-often sidekick, Ruth Langmore.
Each episode is filled with unpredictable complications and hinges on an unlikely story and never ending deluge of almost Herculean tasks, as well as the intricacies of personal relationships.
Mix that all up with huge amounts of cash and drugs, stunning landscapes and beautiful cinematography and you end up with an award-winning highly watchable and addictive show.
Like many other global fans of this series, I am hoping for a fourth season.