Orphan (2009) Collector’s Edition Blu-ray Review: Surprisingly Strong Psychological Thriller

Jaume Collet-Serra’s Orphan, starring Vera Farmiga as the mom, Kate, and Peter Saarsgard as the dad, John, is a psychological thriller with Isabelle Fuhrman in the starring role as the orphan, Esther. Kate and John have two children, twelve-year-old Daniel (Jimmy Bennett), and their five-year-old deaf daughter, Max (Aryana Engineer). They were expecting a third child, Jessica, but she was stillborn. Kate and John decide to go orphan shopping at the local Catholic orphanage and are drawn to Esther who is surprisingly intelligent, impressively artistic, and unnaturally witty for her age.

Buy Orphan (2009) Collector’s Edition Blu-ray

Esther instantly bonds with Max, in part because Esther was nice enough to learn a few phrases of American Sign Language to help with their ability to communicate. Daniel, on the other hand, is cold to Esther from the start and simply cannot find a way to trust her. As for the parents: John and Esther have the closest relationship while Kate and Esther have a relationship that continuously heads south as their time together progresses.

Esther could settle in and have a nice home, but something is seriously wrong with her. The last home she lived in burned down from arson. Every time Kate and John try to rekindle their relationship, Esther can be found lurking from a nearby corner. When Sister Abigail from the orphanage (CCH Pounder) drops by to warn John and Kate, Esther causes Abigail to crash her car, bludgeons her to death, and then gets Max to help hide the body. And it just gets worse from there.

Bonus Features:

  • New 2024 2K scan of the interpositive
  • Silent Story – Interview with Composer John Ottman
  • Mama’s Little Devils: Bad Seeds and Evil Children
  • Deleted Scenes / Alternate Ending
  • Still Gallery
  • Trailer

Esther has several interesting secrets – none of which you will hear in this review. Suffice to say that Esther is not who she seems to be at all. She has a chip on her shoulder the size of Arkansas, and nobody in the family is ultimately safe. The direction, editing, acting, and music all come together to keep Orphan firing on all cylinders. Recommended.

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Greg Hammond

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