Pros: script divided into three equally important stories; actors; filming in several countries; character reveal; completeness of the plot Cons: some episodes may seem too bloody; by the middle the series gets a little boring (but, it’s worth noting, it later recovers) “ZeroZeroZero”
Genre crime drama
Creators: Stefano Sollima, Leonardo Fasoli, Mauricio Katz
Cast: Andrea Riseborough (Emma), Dane DeHaan (Chris), Gabriel Byrne (Edward), Giuseppe de Domenico (Stefano), Adriano Chiaramida (Don Minu), Harold Torres (Manuel), Noe Hernandez (Varas), Tchéky Karyo (François) ), Diego Cataño (Chino), Seydina Balde (Omar), etc.
Amazon Prime Video Channel
Year of release 2020
ZeroZeroZero is a film adaptation of the novel of the same name by Italian writer Roberto Saviano (the name also refers to high-grade cocaine). Saviano is famous as a journalist and author of the book Gomorra, which was based on a detective series that fully revealed the criminal activities of the mafia clan.
ZeroZeroZero also has mafia structures, however, in addition to them, other characters appear in the series involved in the operation of transporting expensive cargo. This product, of course, is nothing more than a shipment of drugs.
The series is divided into three storylines that take place in Mexico, the USA and Italy – here one side is the seller, the other is responsible for logistics, and the third is the buyer. The head of the crime clan, Don Minu, hiding in an underground bunker in Calabria, decides to return power to his own hands. To appease his allies, he orders several thousand kilograms of cocaine disguised as cans of chili peppers. The intermediaries who will be responsible for transporting the drugs are members of the Linwood family from New Orleans, who are preparing the departure of the cargo ship. At this time, in Monterey, a special unit of soldiers is carrying out an operation to eliminate a drug cartel. In their ranks there is someone who does not obey orders and carries out his own mission, which can affect the course of the entire transaction.
ZeroZeroZero covers a really large amount of material, alternating events in different countries and managing to properly introduce the character of each key character. It is worth noting that there are quite a lot of them in the series, and each character is developed more than well. Due to the specifics of the script, some lines fade into the background for a while, and when the series returns to them, what is happening remains clear and still interesting.
Since big money is involved, betrayal among the allies becomes a problem that knows no bounds. Each side has put too much at stake, so they want to see it all to the end, but this is not so easy, especially if new players enter the picture who know no mercy. For this reason, many of the scenes shown in ZeroZeroZero are extremely bloody – you will have to get used to this literally from the first episode, accepting all the cruelty of the story.
The thing is that the series avoids those who use drugs, striving for a beautiful life, or those who reap the fruits of their addiction. The showrunners focus on other players – the organizers and executors of the delivery, going through mortal danger and justifying it for their own benefit. These people fall under bullets, drag their mutilated bodies behind them and flee, hoping for revenge. Such scenes (and there will be many of them in the series) are staged at the proper level, in no way inferior to Hollywood action films, but at the same time adhering to a realistic picture. In addition to all this, beautiful landscapes appear in the frame, and the faces of the characters are sometimes illuminated by neon signs.
In such an atmosphere, members of the wealthy Linwood family, whose story begins in comfortable conditions in the United States, stand out. Elder sister Emma (played by British actress Andrea Riseborough, who appeared in the films Birdman, The Death of Stalin and Mandy) is in charge of the transportation. Her younger brother Chris (American actor Dane DeHaan, known for the films The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets) was never involved in the family business, but also turned out to be one of the participants in what was happening. The Linwoods’ transformation and decisions are extremely interesting to watch, given that they will inevitably be connected to other storylines.
ZeroZeroZero’s lead director Stefano Sollima, working with a screenwriter named Mauricio Katz (one of the creators of the sci-fi series Maniac), managed to make a crime drama with a noticeable amount of tension. The series has a peculiar way of gradually revealing the course of events and, perhaps, towards the middle of ZeroZeroZero it can slow down a little. For this case, the showrunners have prepared a technique for flashbacks that change the perception of what is happening. In addition, they manage to put an end to the finale of the eighth episode, for which the series should also be praised.
After watching ZeroZeroZero, you leave with the impression of a worthwhile series that will still be relevant in a few years. Some may find it too dark, but the story will certainly find its audience. For example, someone who is tired of unrealistic teen dramas like Netflix.
ZeroZeroZero is a series on a large scale for fans of true crime stories.