To say that this is the total opposite of what Jason Bateman has done in his career is a bit of an understatement.
Other than “The Gift”, Bateman has never really tried out his dramatic chops. He is more well-known for his snarky comedic roles like in the classic “Arrested Development”. However, “Ozark” shows off his acting range, along with co-stars Laura Linney and Julia Garner.
Bateman stars as Marty Byrde, a financial advisor and family man who lives in Chicago. However, unknown to his family, he is also a money launderer for the second-largest drug cartel in Mexico. When his partner is murdered due to lost money, he moves his family to the Lake of the Ozarks in order to regain it.
If this premise sounds familiar, then you are right. The first instant comparison people make to “Ozark” is one of the greatest dramas of all time, “Breaking Bad”. “Ozark” has similar elements; a family-man anti-hero, Mexican drug cartels, and some graphic violence. However, unlike “Breaking Bad”, this show starts off slower. Each episode is about an hour long, with the exception of the finale which comes in at at whopping one hour and twenty minutes. Also, for those waiting for the show that is on the same level, if not better, than “Breaking Bad”, this show isn’t it. But it is still very good as a Netflix binge-watch.
The best thing about “Ozark” is the acting from Bateman, Linney, and Julia Garner, who plays small-town criminal Ruth Langmore. Garner is the standout of the show, as you are immediately invested in her story-arc. Bateman and Linney are also fantastic, as their chemistry and dramatic acting are top-notch.
Overall, this show will never be as good as “Breaking Bad”, and starts off really slow. However, the potential of “Ozark” is sky-high, and when left in the hands of the actors, there is a bright future ahead for the series.