Kate and John Coleman are rebuilding their troubled marriage after the loss of their baby. The couple decide to adopt a child. When they meet 9-year-old Esther at the St. Marina Orphanage, they immediately fall in love with the well-educated orphan. Their son, Daniel is hostile to his new sister, but their deaf mute daughter, Max is enchanted with her - at first. Eventually, Kate begins to feel that Esther is manipulative and possibly even psychologically damaged. John refuses to listen to his wife's misgivings. 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 what she seems to be.Written by
The film was originally written to take place during the fall, and some exterior shots were filmed to establish this. Shortly before principal photography was set to begin in December 2007, the Toronto locations were hit with near-record snowfall, forcing the change of setting to winter. One of the scenes written out as a result was a Halloween carnival at Daniel and Esther's school. See more »
After Kate enters "antisocial personality disorder" into an Internet search on her computer, as reflected in her glasses lenses, the screen immediately directs to a synopsis page clearly labeled with a different personality disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder. The two disorders are not synonymous. See more »
After the end title sequence, the rest of the credits are, among other things, smeared and splattered with fluorescent paint, lipstick kisses, and Esther's violent artwork. A small heart is also painted next to "John" (Peter Sarsgaard) in the cast list. See more »
We've seen Orphan many times before (The Bad Seed, The Good Son and, of course, The Omen), yet, somehow, Jaume Collet Serra manages to squeeze something fresh out of an old tale.
There's plenty of shocks and also some laughs and Esther's "secret" is, surprisingly, original.
Orphan doesn't hold a candle to the aforementioned films, but its better than the more recent ones like Joshua (which, coincidentally, Vera Farmiga also starred in, as well as having the same role (mother)).
Don't let the trailer fool you into thinking this is just another "evil kid" movie. Its really much more than that. This is definitely one of the better horror films to come along these days.
My audience loved it, and so did I.
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