• Network: Netflix
  • Series Premiere Date: Mar 26, 2020

Universal acclaim - based on 11 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
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Critic Reviews

  1. Reviewed by: Robert Levin
    Mar 27, 2020
    "Unorthodox" is an achievement of searing power and grace, attuned to big, sweeping emotions and small, observational moments in equal measure. ... This is one of the major achievements in the history of Netflix original productions. You cannot miss it.
  2. Reviewed by: Aaron Barnhart
    Mar 27, 2020
    Unorthodox works. It feels like an immersive documentary about a woman who comes of age while escaping the oppressive religious community that has defined her entire life. And a big reason for that is a superb performance by Shira Haas.
  3. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Mar 26, 2020
    All along, “Unorthodox” builds a steady emotional tapestry that culminates in its bracing finale scenes, when the stakes at hand matter less than the way each character processes their decisions. Yet none of those circumstances would hit too hard if not for the undercurrent of authenticity brought by Haas at the center of nearly ever scene. The 24-year-old actress is an instant sensation who commands every moment she’s on screen.
  4. Reviewed by: Jen Chaney
    Mar 27, 2020
    Information about Esty’s background leaks out little by little. ... That approach is one of the things that makes Unorthodox — which is both a character study and, once Yanky and his dodgy cousin Moishe (Jeff Wilbusch) try to track Etsy down in Germany, a pseudo-thriller — so arresting. ... Haas gives an extraordinary performance here.
  5. Reviewed by: Hank Stuever
    Mar 25, 2020
    A gripping and carefully constructed four-part Netflix drama. ... What’s impressive about the series, created by Anna Winger and Alexa Karolinski (and directed by Maria Schrader), is how it builds out the story by indulging the viewer’s curiosity, in flashback form, in a way that adds shape and empathy to both the Hasidic tradition and Esty’s rejection of it. ... Haas lends a grave and yet vulnerable luminescence to the role; a viewer can’t help but be riveted by what will happen next, making the show a satisfying binge-watch.
  6. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Mar 25, 2020
    What unfolds is a story of personal discovery with the intensity of a spy thriller. ... Haas is a phenomenon, expressive and captivating.
  7. Reviewed by: Joel Keller
    Mar 26, 2020
    We wish Unorthodox didn’t have the menacing specter of Esty’s estranged husband (more accurately, his family) interfering with her story of discovery, but the story is well-told despite the thriller aspect.
  8. Reviewed by: Dan Fienberg
    Mar 25, 2020
    There's a tremendous intimacy here as, sometimes in a very literal sense, you're being let behind a curtain. And in that intimacy, buoyed by language code-switching from Yiddish to English to German, Unorthodox finds a lot of humanity, even in the characters who are surely villains. That plus the vulnerable-then-fierce performance from Haas allowed me to put aside other reservations and find fascination in this occasionally wobbly, often inspiring story.
  9. Reviewed by: Judy Berman
    Mar 25, 2020
    The show’s plot is not always as convincing as its characters; the centrality of the conservatory to Esty’s storyline, in which it functions as a social hub, a source of hope and on one occasion an overnight shelter can feel especially contrived. Yet, thanks in large part to uniformly fine performances, creators Anna Winger and Alexa Karolinski render each character’s constantly shifting emotional states with rare precision.
  10. Reviewed by: Alissa Wilkinson
    Mar 26, 2020
    At times the plot of Unorthodox feels a little too carefully devised to maneuver characters into places where they can encounter one another; at the same time, that makes for pleasurably succinct storytelling.
  11. Reviewed by: Nick Allen
    Mar 27, 2020
    While "Unorthodox" has rich cultural detail in presenting this community back in Williamsburg, the tragic note it hits remains the same. In this story, religion is presented as a joyless life sentence. That’s an entirely welcome depiction whether one agrees with it or not, it’s more that it flattens out the story when it comes to making a challenging world or set of characters, and makes Esty's liberation all the more obvious.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 59 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 50 out of 59
  2. Negative: 5 out of 59
  1. Mar 26, 2020
    That mini-serie is amazingly good!
  2. Mar 26, 2020
    Some people really weep and whine all the time. they start, they go into a situation, they get out of the situation, they are given options,Some people really weep and whine all the time. they start, they go into a situation, they get out of the situation, they are given options, they are given no options, they are offered community, they are offered independence and nothing is good enough, they just weep and whine on and on and on. Zero sense of humor, zero love of life, just a constant sense of detachment from any kind of joy. This show portrays a woman from start to finish weeping and whining about every situation she is in. About as fun as only critics can enjoy. Full Review »
  3. Mar 28, 2020
    Amazing series. Great acting by Shira Haas!! Watched it in one day. Would definitely recommend.