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Movie review: Orange is the new Black, Season 1

Orange is the new Black, Season 1
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Movie review: Orange is the new Black, Season 1


Piper Chapman did some bad things in her past while rebelling against her parents, and life in general. When they come back to haunt her, she finds herself in a federal penitentiary. Extracted from her posh New York life she must now learn to exist with an eccentric group of inmates where she may even find friendship.

Taylor Schilling (Piper), Danielle Brooks (Tasha), Taryn Manning (Tiffany), Laura Prepon (Alex), Michael Harney (Healy), Kate Mulgrew (Red), Jason Biggs (Larry), Natasha Lyonne (Nicky), Pablo Schreiber (Mendez).

Orange is the new Black begins with some extreme shock value in the first few episodes with nudity, shower scenes, lesbian sex scenes, and more. From there the story settles a bit and we are left with more drama than anything else. Of course, a bit more nudity and sex is thrown in to bring us back about the time things get boring. The storyline moves around touching on drama, ethics and morality, and even some suspense. Though not quite like being unable to turn away from a train wreck in progress, Orange is the new Black comes close while somehow keeping things entertaining.

Schilling at first looked like she was going to ruin this series all by herself but she quickly found her footing and things smoothed out nicely. Prepon was an excellent addition to the series and delivered exceptionally well. Mulgrew was an unexpected participant and has changed quite a bit since her days as Captain of a Starship, but presented very well. The remainder of the supporting cast did nicely and remained quite entertaining.

Camera work, sets, and backgrounds are modest but good. Physical effects were very well executed throughout. Dialogue was good and added a lot to the series. Sound and soundtrack were both well done.

In the end, Orange is the new Black is a very interesting Crime Drama that, although it includes a substantial amount of shock drama, is quite entertaining on the same level as a crack addiction. Fans of alternative lifestyle stories and edgy drama will enjoy this the most while others may be seriously offended.

With plenty of nudity, sexuality, foul language, and adult situations save this for older teens and above.

Released: 2013
Reviewed: 11.16.13
Star rating: 4 out of 5
Genre: Crime, Drama, Comedy

copyright ©2013 Dave Riedel

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