Orange County

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Entertainment: +3

Content: -3

Colin Hanks, son of super star Tom Hanks, co-stars with Sissy Spacek's daughter, Schulyer Fisk, in this wacky teen comedy. Teenager Shaun Brunder (Hanks) gives up surfing on the California coast with his pot-smoking friends after he discovers a half-buried book on the beach. The book so impresses Shaun, he applies for admission to Stanford University to pursue a career as a writer and to escape his dysfunctional family. His hopes are dashed, however, when the high school counselor (Lily Tomlin) sends Stanford the wrong transcript. Shaun's determination to set the record straight leads to a series of frantic, comical, impossible manipulations with the help of girl friend Ashley (Fisk) and Lance (Jack Black), his drugged-out brother. ORANGE COUNTY may be a box office hit, especially popular with teenagers.

Thankfully, this teen movie lacks the usual incessant, gross bathroom humor, but there's plenty of offensive material, mostly from Shaun's dysfunctional family. His alcoholic mother (Catherine O'Hara) embarrasses Shaun with her low-cut blouses, drunkenness and neglect of her elderly invalid husband, Shaun's stepfather. Older brother Lance, usually in a drug stupor and wearing only underwear throughout the movie, depends on Shaun to supply a specimen so he can pass a drug test. In his misguided attempt to help Shaun, Lance seduces a Stanford employee, then sets fire to the administration building with no consequences. All adults in the film, from parents to teachers and the dean of admissions, are portrayed as unbelievably dumb and gullible. Shaun's embarrassment over his bizarre family eventually becomes acceptance with a sliver of hope that lifestyles change. Drunks and druggies portrayed as comical send messages that anything that makes you laugh is "cool." All that, plus enough foul language for an R-rating with 14 obscenities and three strong profanities, makes ORANGE COUNTY a major disappointment.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Paramount Pictures, 5555 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90038

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Several (9) times Moderate

Obscene Language: Many (14) times - F-word 1, s-word 1, other 12

Profanity: Several (7) times Regular 3 (GD 2, J); Exclamatory 4

Violence: Few times Moderate (knee bashed into student's crotch; accidental fall off roof; building set fire; invalid in run-away wheel chair crashes; teenager attempts to drown himself; dog bites girl)

Sex: Implied 3 times (cheerleader with multiple partners; divorced couple in bed; teenagers in back of van)

Nudity: Near Nudity - Many times (mother emphasizes cleavage w/ low-cut necklines, overweight man in briefs)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Slang terms for sexual behavior

Drugs: Many times (drunkenness and drug addiction treated comically; teenagers smoke pot)

Other: No consequences for setting building on fire and breaking in college offices; teen to help brother pass drug test; teenager threatens to blackmail classmate; woman inadvertently drinks urine specimen

Running Time: 83 minutes
Intended Audience: Teens and young adults

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