We hope you're ready to binge watch! From returning shows to indie films, there's a lot to watch this week, and we've got it all covered in Volume 56. Sprinkle in a new jam to keep your mood upbeat, and what more could you ask for this weekend?
Ozark Season 4
At long last, one of our favorite streaming shows is returning for its final season. Netflix’s Ozark is back for one final go, and we are very excited to finally learn the fate of the Byrde family, and all of their associates. Jason Bateman is fantastic in a dramatic turn as the lead, and while his role in the show definitely took some getting used to, he has proven he is capable of doing more than just comedy. Julia Garner and Laura Linney are also fantastic, and they headline a pretty solid supporting cast that delivers each season. Ozark definitely gives off some serious Breaking Bad vibes, and while it might not be quite as successful as its predecessor, it’s remarkably consistent for a streaming drama. We have to warn you, it’s not for the faint-of-heart, and even the pilot starts off with quite a bang. But it’s very bingeable if you have the stomach for it, and if you need something to keep you busy during the cold winter months. If you haven’t started yet, you’ve got three whole seasons logged and ready to binge! And even if you’re caught up, you’ll still have 7 hours of time to spend in the Ozarks.
Speaking of comedy stars diving into dramas, we can’t leave out the streaming debut of Bob Odenkirk’s Nobody. The 2021 action-thriller is finally coming to HBO after arriving in theaters during COVID, so we can all finally watch it at home (without having to rent it). Nobody comes from the creator of John Wick, which might say all you need to know about the tone and quality of the movie. It’s another chapter in the funny, gritty, action-revenge-drama genre, this time featuring a beloved comedy star. Sure, Odenkirk has proven his acting chops in Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, but neither of those shows asked him to be an action star. He pulls off the transition quite well, still maintaining his lovable comedy side through all the gunfire. The movie got great reviews, especially for something in that genre, and audiences and critics both seemed to love it. If you don’t have time to binge watch, Nobody is some good, quick, popcorn entertainment for your weekend.
Tai Verdes - “LAst dAy oN EaRTH”
If you’re searching for something a little more uplifting this weekend, look no further than Tai Verdes’s “LAst dAy oN EaRTH.” Verdes had one of our favorite tracks of last year with “A-O-K,” and his latest single is yet another jam. It might not quite reach last year’s heights, but it’s still incredibly catchy and very introspective. The lyrics are all about taking advantage of the time we have, seeing loved ones, and experiencing the beauty of the world, which feels like a pretty important reminder these days. It kicks off immediately with a really cool horn part that instantly gets you grooving, and some great drum and keys parts round out the sound. Verdes’s voice and cadence is pretty soothing, too, which adds to the good vibes of the song. We’ve been listening to some more mellow music these days in the cooler winter weather, but we’ll definitely be adding this upbeat, sunny day jam to our rotation immediately.
Sundance Film Festival
Sundance Film Festival was one of the numerous events that had to go virtual in recent weeks, which is obviously a huge bummer for filmmakers (and hopeful attendees). But the virtual film fest gives creatives and movie-lovers like us a really unique opportunity to experience the line-up from home. Anyone could buy a ticket and “attend” virtual premieres and screenings of hot, up-and-coming projects, instead of having to wait a year (or more) for them to air anywhere other than Park City. Sundance has seen record-setting sales in each of the last two years – and there’s definitely the potential for another record-breaker this year. Huge, highly-anticipated projects like Cooper Raiff’s Cha Cha Real Smooth and Adamma Ebo’s Honk for Jesus, Save Your Soul are just a couple of the features debuting in a crowded field. Friday Five favorite Palm Springs debuted at Sundance to a ton of acclaim in 2020, and we can only hope there’s another instant classic to come out of the festival this year. We’re excited to take advantage of the virtual screenings, and recommend you do, too – if you can still get a ticket!
Russell Westbrook Dunk
It doesn’t matter how tough of a season Russell Westbrook is having, he’s going to give you highlight-reel dunks. And this week, he struck again. This time, his victim was reigning Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert. It was explosive. Westbrook isn’t particularly big by NBA standards, so going after Gobert is quite a tall task (pun very much intended). The way he attacks the rim is amazing, and we’ll always be in awe of his jumping ability and athleticism. Obviously Gobert isn’t a slouch, so when this dunk lit up the internet earlier in the week, it was for good reason. Even if you don’t like the Russ plays, you have to admire the confidence to go up for a play like that. He’s already appeared in a Friday Five before, and we wouldn’t be surprised to see him again. Until next time, we’ll just have to watch all the angles of his annihilation of Gobert.