Escape at Dannemora season 1 review: A chilling, must-see narrative


Escape at Dannemora has all the elements of a successful drama series plus the allure of real-life events.

Escape at Dannemora sort of just snuck up on us and suffice to say, it was a pleasant surprise. And it wasn’t just the fans that took a liking to it. It’s been receiving critical acclaim since its premiere with Patricia Arquette snagging the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Limited Series.

It’s also up for 5 nominations at the Critics’ Choice Awards for Best Actor in a Limited Series (Paul Dano and Benicio Del Toro), Best Supporting Actor in a Limited Series (Eric Lange), Best Actress in a Limited Series (Patricia Arquette), and Best Limited Series.

What is so special about this Showtime limited series? The most alluring factor is that it is based off real-life events that took place just three years ago. The story is about two prison inmates that escape the prison with the help of a prison employee–with whom they both sexual relations with. It’s the type of story you want to roll your eyes at and say, “That so did not happen”. But it did, and Escape at Dannemora tries to convey the story to its best ability.

The biggest shocker comes when you learn that Ben Stiller is the creative mind behind this series. It’s hard to fathom that a comedian like Stiller could produce a series like this, but alas, it happened and he succeeded.

Escape at Dannemora is intriguing from the get-go and has an enticing quality to it that pulls you in. Apart from Arquette who plays the role of Tilly the prison employee, Paul Dano and Benicio Del Toro also star as the two prison inmates, David Sweat, and Richard Matt, respectively.

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Dano and Del Toro do a marvelous job portraying these two characters, and they bring a particular “oomph” to how they play their roles. If you hone in on their characters, David and Matt, they couldn’t be more different.

But a common goal and the idea of freedom unites them and leads them to an unlikely escape. It’s a testament to Dano and Del Toro’s talent to make such drastically different characters work as a unit.

There is so much to take away from Escape at Dannemora particularly relating to the subject matter. Watching David and Matt come together and actually break out is mind-boggling.

We have to remember that even though the series may have been dramatized, it was still a true story. Two inmates did escape and have a sexual relationship with an employee, who seemingly fell in love with both men.

Arquette stands out the most in Escape at Dannemora for her portrayal of Tilly. Mind you, Tilly is a very complicated, confusing character, and while we don’t know much about the woman she portrays, we can tell that Arquette did an outstanding job of it. The subtle nuances, mannerisms, and qualities Arquette conveys make Tilly a character we love to hate.

BEVERLY HILLS, CA – JANUARY 06: Best Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television for ‘Escape at Dannemora’ winner Patricia Arquette poses with the trophy in the press room during the 76th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 6, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

All in all, Escape at Dannemora is a series worth watching and will most likely result in you doing hours of research about the events that inspired it.

There are some dull, boring moments especially at the beginning of the series, but the drama increases tenfold as the moment of escape arrives.

Next. Escape at Dannemora season 1 premiere recap. dark

The cast did a stellar job and we commend Dano, Arquette, Del Toro, along with Eric Lange who plays Tilly’s husband, Lyle. Their performance is top-notch and the series wouldn’t be what it was without them.

If you’re looking for a drama/thriller, Escape at Dannemora, may be right up your alley. Check it out and tell us what you think, we’d love to hear from you!