This weekend, Cheddar's staff is recommending money laundering capers in the Missouri Ozarks, a horror/mystery hidden on videotapes, a dark drama set in medieval France, and a "book smart" teen comedy.
Ozark, Season 4, Part 1 - Netflix
Picked by Producer Lawrence Banton
Netflix's hit series Ozark is making its return to the streaming giant this weekend as the final season gets underway. The story follows Marty (Jason Bateman) and Wendy Byrde (Laura Linney) who relocate from Chicago to Missouri's Ozarks after Marty's business partner, and fellow money launderer is caught skimming millions of dollars from a Mexican drug cartel. The series follows the Byrdes as they grow their laundering operation to save their own necks. But you know what they say, "more money, more problems." With the cartel breathing down their necks and being forced to deal with locals who saw them as threatening competition, things got out of hand — and fast! This season, it looks like the couple will be taking on a bigger role in the drug and money laundering business as they become the big boss' direct line to the Ozarks. I'm ready for an intense ride to say the very least. The final 14 episodes will be split into two parts, with the first seven available on Friday.
Archive 81 - Netflix
Picked by Digital Editor Mike Nam
Ah, the days of analog, so much creepier in light of all the digital crispness that surrounds us today. Archive 81 is an evocative new series on Netflix based on a found-footage horror podcast of the same name. The show revolves around a video archivist investigating a trove of tapes from a mysterious building fire back in the '90s in New York City as he becomes increasingly obsessed with the incident and the graduate student who had been recording her research of the odd community that lived there. After the first episode, so far it has the feel of dark, weird, and surreal works like Twin Peaks or the modern video game Control.
The Last Duel - HBO Max
Picked by Reporter Alex Vuocolo
The 84-year-old director Ridley Scott astonishingly had two major releases in 2021: House of Gucci and The Last Duel. The former, starring Lady Gaga, is a high-fashion crime saga. The latter is a two-and-a-half-hour drama about a sexual assault in medieval France. You can probably guess which one did better at the box office. But don't let Matt Damon and Ben Affleck's outrageous pre-modern haircuts — or the sordid subject matter — scare you away. The Last Duel is wildly entertaining as a big-budget period piece, while also delving deeper than most contemporary films into the contested nature of justice and truth and how people skew the world to match with their perceptions. If you needed any more convincing, this is the first time Affleck and Damon have written a script together since Good Will Hunting.
Booksmart - Hulu
Picked by Sr. News Editor Dina Ross
I recently got to watch Booksmart, a 2019 teen comedy starring Kaitlyn Dever and Beanie Feldstein. It's not the straight-up goofy look at high school like we're used to seeing (I'm looking at you 'He's All That'), but there are plenty of immature laughs to be had in the flick directed by Olivia Wilde. As the age-old storyline goes, two teens decide to let loose on their last night of high school. The BFFs hit up a bunch of parties all over town in an effort to find their secret crushes. Hijinks ensue, of course, but there's a loving undertone between the friends that carries throughout the story. If you want to catch a fun teen movie with a little more class, Booksmart might be just what you're looking for.