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Monday
Oct192009

Review: Orphan (2009)

 

Rated R for disturbing violent content, some sexuality and language.

Orphan is directed by Jaume Collet-Serra,(House of Wax) from a screenplay by David Leslie Johnson and a story by Alex Mace.

The film stars Vera Farmiga (The Departed), Peter Sarsgaard (Flightplan), Isabelle Fuhrman (Hounddog), CCH Pounder (TV’s The Shield), Jimmy Bennett (Star Trek), and new comer Aryana Engineer

Joel Silver, Susan Downey, Jennifer Davisson Killoran and Leonardo DiCaprio produced the film, with Steve Richards, Don Carmody and Michael Ireland serving as executive producers. Richard Mirisch, David Barrett and Erik Olsen co-produced.

On with the review.

Young married couple Kate (Vera Farmiga) and John (Peter Sarsgaard) are devastated at the tragic loss of their unborn child, a loss that has taken a toll on both their marriage and Kate's fragile psyche.

When the couple decides to adopt another child they find themselves drawn to Esther (Isabelle Fuhrman),

Almost as soon as they welcome the little girl into their home an alarming series of events begins to unfold, leading Kate to believe that there's something wrong with Esther - this seemingly angelic little girl is not what she appears to be. Concerned for the safety of her family, Kate tries to get John and others to see past Esther's sweet face. But her warnings go unheard.

 

It was very intense and it keeps you on the edge of your seat. This movie kicks ass. It has a great plot, with secrets that you'll never guess. 

Esther is 9, and is adopted by Jon and Kate, who just lost a child. Once she starts to move in things basically go downhill from there.

 

 

 

The performances I enjoyed the most in this movie were from Aryana Engineer and Isabelle Fuhrman. (the two youngest people in the movie)

Aryana and Isabelle are very cute and they are both talented. I can't believe it, but they truly are amazingly professional for their age. I am impressed by their acting. Both of the girls WILL be VERY famous by the time they are adults.

 

Orphan opens with one of those truly mortifying scenes that can actually go beyond typical horror into something else, that visceral terror that comes with a catastrophic event. This being the death of a baby, as Kate is about to give birth, sees blood under her gown while waiting in the hospital, and is told her child has died before even giving birth. Then it gets more and more disturbing: her husband John is filming this devastating scene with his camcorder, and he presents the dead baby to her as she's sobbing in tears. The whole scene was very fast paced and twisted.

 

Then the rest of the plot unfolds but it becomes more predictable, While early on we get a scene with Kate and her little girl Max and how she reads to her at night even though she's deaf.

Overall, I enjoyed Orphan and think it is one of the better horror films I have seen in a few months. It doesn't take itself too seriously, and while it may offer your standard scary movie clichés, the film takes the genre into a new level with certain scenes in it guaranteed to offer some shock value. I loved the much hyped twist in the movie because it is over the top, just like the rest of the film. If you want reality, I would suggest either not seeing this movie, or to stop taking scary movies so serious. 

Body Count: 2.5 almost 3

 

I’ll give this one 4.5 out of 5 stars

 

                                            

 

Did you see this movie? Leave a comment.

Sunday
Oct042009

Review: American Virgin (2009)

Teen comedy starring Rob Schneider and Jenna Dewan. After involuntarily over indulging and becoming drunk for the first time in her life, a freshman college girl discovers her sinful shenanigans have been caught on camera by a shoddy video producer. With her scholarship for college coming from an abstinence group who believe in no sex before marriage, it is a race against time and across country as she and her friends attempt to retrieve the potentially damaging footage before it is exposed. 

I've always wanted to see a film that contained this much adult content and yet felt so geared towards being a family movie.

 

 I really don't know who this movie was made for. The story is so fluffy it seems like young girls were the target demographic, but then there's the raunchy college humor and frequent nudity. We see boobs … lots of boobs.

 

 

  A girl, Priscilla (Jenna Dewan), who has devoted her life to chastity and following rules, goes to college on scholarship from an organization that promotes celibacy.

 

 

  Priscilla inadvertently gets drunk and is filmed topless at a party by "Chicks Go Crazy" (the movie's fictional version of "Girls Gone Wild"). Priscilla and her new-found college friends embark on a journey to save her reputation and her scholarship by getting the footage back. Along the way she learns lots of lessons about life and love.

 


Although it has lots of (attempted) college humor, the storyline is that of a typical formulaic teen movie, complete with morals and cliché moments. Sometimes it's rather painful. One scene in particular stands out in my mind, where the main character and a guy who's falling in love with her are listening to the radio and actually break out into song.

 

Watch if you want.

 

I'll be generous and give this one 2.5/5