The movie is about a couple who set out to adopt an older child. The couple are John and Kate (no joke!) and already have two biological children, Max (who is almost completely deaf) and Daniel. Jessica, who was to be their third child, died in the womb. They decided to adopt rather than have another child. As we learn as the movie progresses, the couple has marital problems stemming from alcoholism to affairs.
John and Kate end up deciding to adopt Esther, a tween orphan they meet at a local Catholic girls’ orphanage. She is from Russia and very different from the others. She’s well spoken and very artistic, and has an unusual style of dress. They take her home, and basically the nightmare begins when as the adoption starts to be finalized. It seems a lot of Esther’s records of where she came from are missing, and the last family she was with all mysteriously died in a house fire.
The movie has many scenes that are supposed to make you jump, and I believe I did once or twice. However there are many cringe worthy scenes in the film. You’ll sit there muttering to yourself “Oh no she didn’t!” and “Oh no no no no!” It’s definitely one of the best evil little kid movies I’ve ever seen.
Of course if you’ve seen the trailer, you know there is a twist. The tag line to the movie is “You’ll never guess Esther’s secret.” I think they did a great job with this because I didn’t figure it out at all until the reveal. They do a good job of leading you down several possible paths as to what’s going on with her before the reveal. Of course when you go back, you realize the clues were always there. It’s a far fetched twist, one that of course only works in movies.
Two thumbs up! See it if you can, otherwise rent it when it comes out.