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A husband and wife who recently lost their baby adopt a nine year-old girl who is not nearly as innocent as she claims to be.



(screenplay), (story)
712 ( 128)
1 win & 6 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jamie Young ...
Lorry Ayers ...
Brendan Wall ...
Mustafa Abdelkarim ...
Landon Norris ...


Kate and John Coleman are rebuilding their troubled marriage. Kate had a drinking problem, but is in therapy and is doing well. She has been sober for one year. The couple decide to adopt a child. When they meet the nine-year-old Russian girl, Esther, at the St. Marina Orphanage, they immediately fall in love with the well-educated orphan. Their young son, Daniel, is hostile to his new sister; but their deaf daughter, little Max, is enchanted with her - at first. Eventually, Kate begins to feel that Esther is manipulative and possibly even psychologically disturbed. John refuses to listen to his wife's misgivings, and the wounds in their marriage reopen. Kate calls Sister Abigail at the orphanage, and the nun informs her that Esther has a troubled and mysterious history. Kate delves further into Esther's past and discovers she is not all she pretends to be. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Can you keep a secret? See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing violent content, some sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




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Release Date:

24 July 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Orphan  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$12,871,483 (USA) (24 July 2009)


$41,573,740 (USA) (2 October 2009)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The scene at Max Coleman's school was filmed in Toronto, Canada. The building was Centennial College's Center for Creative Communications. See more »


When Esther is introduced to her new class, she is holding a Nelson Spelling book. These books are not used in the United States, where the film is set; they are, however, used in Canada, where filming took place. See more »


[first lines]
John Coleman: Hang on. I know. You're doin' so good. You're doin' so good, honey. You all right?
Kate Coleman: Yeah.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits beyond the production logos and the title. See more »


Spoofed in Scary Movie 5 (2013) See more »


Re-Education (Through Labor)
Written by Brandon Barnes, Zach Blair (as Zachariah Blair), Tim McIlrath (as Timothy Mcilwraith) and Joe Principe (as Joseph Principe)
Performed by Rise Against
Courtesy of Interscope Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Overall very indulging, and well done thriller.
24 July 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Orphan" was a movie that truly did surprised me. I mean I came into this movie honestly not having any idea which direction it would take me, I mean sure it looked good, but then again the 30 second previews made it seem a bit mediocre. When the movie went off I was very pleased by what I had seen. The things I love most about Orphan is how they present and introduce these characters so well. The minute I saw the main couple I couldn't help but take a liking to them, and Esther who very easily steals the show, is incredibly likable. As a matter of fact the thing I do love a lot about the film is how they take their time in the story, I loved how for the first half or so you see Esther adapting to her new surroundings, and I became extremely indulged into this. I also think they balanced out the character of Esther well. I mean this performance, and character, could have easily been portrayed as this over-the-top, annoying, non-intimidating, and non-believable character, but not once do you ever feel that. Also it is very entertaining, and you're hooked from the moment you see this little girl Esther. It was also clever at times, to where you feel a sense of danger as far as the story goes because it's literally like anything can happen. Even if does begin to make you mad for whatever reason, you still can't help but keep watching and wondering. At times it may feel predictable, but they've already presented these characters so well, that you can't but feel that maybe you haven't predicted it. I will say I wished "Orphan" HAD paced itself a little better, I mean they don't immediately jump into the story, but when they do it feels rushed and as if they fear the audience won't care about the characters, when it's not true. Also towards the end the characters start to lose liking, so much so that I couldn't help but look at these characters(in particular the mom and dad) and say "Who are you, and why are you being such an unlikable stereotype!" As a result of the characters acting stupid and stereotypical at this point in the film it just became predictable to an extent where you knew what was going to happen. Last you know I don't know how I felt about the twist, it was done well enough to where it would fit the storyline, but I feel it defeats the shocking, brutal, and thrilling nature of the film. Anyways, overall "Orphan" is one of the better thrillers you'll probably see this year, and even if you're not too big on these kind of films, I still recommend "Orphan"

83 of 128 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The husband was so unbelievable he almost ruined the movie scotty999
What dumbass adoptive parents would choose Esther? LOL. kentry
Esther's broken arm peggy714
Having sex in the kitchen while kids are in the house... lieben79
Would You Let Your 10 Year Old Daughter Play Esther? Cookiecrumb444
The wrist scars and the cast ASaloka2010
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