A ‘Kiran Bernard Kutinha’ review
Can you keep a secret?
I am forced to zip my lip on this one. “Orphan” is one movie you will not come across very often. With just two movies to his credit, that dint fair too well director Jaume Collet-Serra was very lucky this time around. It comes as no surprise though with investments from a producer like Joel Silver and a magnificent job by the actors involved.
“Orphan” starring Vera Farmiga as Kate Coleman, Peter Sarsgaard as John Coleman, Isabelle Fuhrman as Esther, Jimmy Bennett as Daniel Coleman and last but not the least the very gifted Aryana Engineer as Max Coleman will surely give other long standing top actors a run for their money, in this psychological suspense-thriller.
Kate and Peter is a couple who are finding it hard to cope with the loss of their third child whom they had planned to name Jessica. The child was still-born and this did little to help Kate especially cope, in addition to battling a drinking habit that cost her, her job. They decide to adopt a child and finally found themselves Esther, the child protagonist of the movie, who they come across at the orphanage they visit. In the beginning Esther is extremely well spoken, mannered and a talented young girl who instantly hits it out well with her new parents and also with the couple’s hearing impaired daughter Max, but not quite so with their son Daniel.
It’s almost reaching a happy ever after scene when before long things start going wrong for the Coleman’s and the first ones to notice Esther’s deceitful nature are the kids Max and Daniel. The very articulate Esther turns out to be a not so charming a child. This emphasized very clearly as she portrays a difficult behavioral symptoms and also begins becoming an added cause to the couple’s already crumbling marriage.
This movie is slow to start off with but only with a reason to show a built up to the ultimate climax. At first the story may seem a bit cliché with resemblance to movies like ‘The Good Son’ and ‘Joshua’ but it goes down that path only for a while after which it erupts from its depths within to surprise you. The characterization in this film is excellent, making it not only believable but also relatable and very real. This in turn of course compliments the final result. The emotions displayed by all the actors seem to be very natural and realistic. Credit must be given to the child artists for their extremely mature performance especially Aryana Engineer (Max Coleman) who is hearing-impaired in real-life.
In addition to the acting the screenplay is fantastically executed making every scene a worthy treat. There are frequent moments in the film where the intensity and camera angles lead you to anticipate without any doubt the next scene but only eventually to deny you the pleasure of having reason for the fear you’re made to feel, this primarily owing to the intensity built up. You’re left shocked in the end after all the twists and turns. But it’s definitely worth your time. A well thought and well executed Film in the genre of Thrillers and I do wish I could give this one a 5 but then I would be putting all the successful big budget movies to shame so I’ll stick to a 4 out of 5 for this one.