Seen: August 11, 2009 at AMC
Reason to see: Horror movie with creepy kid? Of course I'm going to see it!
Evil kids. It's one of the funnest horror sub genres, and one that we keep going back for more. With Orphan, I was thrilled to go back for more. Not only is the film scary, freaky and builds great tension, but it does all this in what really feels like an everyday household. Although mixing the realistic with the horrific tends to be a formula, it's one because it can work so well as it did with Orphan.
I also will admit that bumped the enjoyment factor up a notch was that I didn't have it all figured out, even though I was convinced I knew it all from the trailer. So I waltzed in theatre thinking it would be some jump scares and creepy moments like most current horror films. Boy, was I wrong! First off, great acting by Isabelle Fuhrman as the orphan Esther who is totally creepy. I also really enjoyed Vera Farmiga performance, as well as the sheer fact that the two prominent characters were female characters. The family dynamics are completely believable, complex and well developed. I also loved how that one of the characters in the family is hard of hearing, and that it's treated so respectfully and incorporated naturally into the family and relationships.
I was surprized that they used quite a few jump scares and gore, but that really is the tip of the iceberg in comparison to tension and scare factors. What really makes this better than the average horror film is the psychological tension it brings, as well as creative ideas be they conceptual or actually shown. It's also refreshing to see characters are so interesting, diverse, and 3-dimensional.
It's also a film that it's better not to know too much about, so I'll leave it at that and encourage horror fans to see it if they haven't already!
Shannon's Overall View:
I enjoyed it
I'd buy it
I'd recommend it to horror and thriller fans
18 minutes of preshow including 4 commercials and 6 previews: The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story, Sorority Row, Jennifer's Body, Gamer, The Final Destination and Whiteout
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© Shannon Ridler, 2009