Friday, July 31, 2009

Little Orphan Esther

Thursday night Kent & headed to one of the only places where you were able escape the insane heat/humidity here in Vancity - the fantastic A/C that is the movie theatre! Yay to Tinseltown.

Originally I had no interest what so ever in seeing The Orphan. It received very mixed reviews from the critics, but with so many other films out at the moment that I wanna see, I had decided to skip yet another movie about an evil child. Then I heard the "twist". And that changed everything. Then I also heard it was very loosely based on a true story. And I realised that this had the potential to be the best horror flick ever! I have no idea how, but Kentaroo somehow managed to stay spoiler free.

The is one f*cked up movie and I loved it. It was one of the most disturbing movies I have seen in a while, and the loony twist totally lived up to my expectations. Long for a horror film - it clocked in at just over 2 hours - this movie alternates between typical schlock horror to the psychological terror inflicted on the unsuspecting Coleman family by their newly adopted daughter.

The Orphan stars Vera Farmiga & Peter Sarsgaard as a couple (ironically named John & Kate - ha ha ha) who adopt a 9 year old girl after the loss of their unborn child. Esther (played by the incredibly creepy Isabelle Fuhrman) is not as she seems and hilarity, hijinks's and bloody good times ensue. It was awesome.

I won't harp on the obvious plot issues in this movie - such as a couple bringing a child into their family without even introducing her to their existing children, that in spite of the fantastic relationship between mother and children, they were unable to confide in her about their new sister's crazy, or the fact that the adoption went through in less than a month. That is not what this movie is about. This movie is about a crazy little thing called Esther. Esther has a secret. And it is the mother f*cking secret of secrets. A secret worth killing over...... dum dum dum.

Vera Farmiga is gorgeous and such a natural actress. I love her. I can totally see why she was hand-picked by Scorsese for The Departed. Peter Sarsgaard did well with the material he was given. His character - the troubled John - was weak and not especially likable, especially when he breaks down in front of his newly adopted 9 year old daughter. WTF was that? OMG, I loved the little girl playing Max - Aryanna Engineer. This little Vancity girl is the most adorable munchkin ever! So cute.

The movie is relatively light on the gore, focusing more on the perverse torment that Esther inflicts on the family. She is one master manipulator! Going into the movie, knowing what her secret is, makes some of the scenes a tad difficult and disturbing to watch. But the last 30 minutes is cray-zee good. I actually jumped in my seat a few times (which for me is a sign of a good scary flick).

The Orphan is not an intellectual, high-brow movie. But it is totally entertaining and funny and scary and just a whole lot of awesome.


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