Today brought a stark reminder that this place can be truly treacherous. Got carried away with excitement, I did, by a rare successful spell of herring fishing at one of my favourite ice holes - blissfully unaware that the weather had turned until an icy blast hit my gonads and I discovered that my visibility was less than 6 foot in front of me.
How I managed to get back to the igloo, god or The Devil only knows, but it was only after many hours of fruitless searching and stumbling into crevasses that I saw the neon flashing sign saying 'Igloo of the Uncanny - 100 yards on the left!' that I knew I was safe.
In the warmth and light of the igloo, I took stock of my faculties and noticed that my left snow shoe had gone missing. This discovery led me to take to my bed for 3 days, howling and screaming in anguish and misery. If you think that was an over-reaction let me explain - my foot was inside that snow shoe, and is also missing. This place really is beginning to annoy me.
The Orphan (2009)
I’ve read some really good reviews of this film (they were delivered to me anonymously down the igloo chimney one night). I can’t quite agree with them though. The Orphans is a very average, very cliché-ridden horror thriller. Compared with all the other really bad modern horror films that are around, I guess that makes it a good horror film hence the favourable reviews. I think.
Put it this way, you can probably guess the plot from the title. And if you haven’t guessed the plot from the title, within 2 minutes of watching the film, when you discover the mother is a recovering alcoholic, you’ve got all the information you need.
The Omen (45%) + The Shining (15%) + The Hand That Rocks The Cradle (40%) = The Orphan
Kate Coleman, played by Vera Farmiga who has a face that really annoys me...
... is a recovering alcoholic and grieving mom who adopts an orphan from an orphanage (it’s the best place to find orphans apparently) run by nuns who obviously have no interest in paperwork or background checks.
Horror Hints #45 – Never adopt a child from a nun.
Oh, but she’s a lovely child! Bright, intelligent and courteous! A delight!
Hang on, I forgot a bit – it turns out that the orphan (they call her Esther rather than ‘the orphan’ in the film, which I think makes sense) can be a right little madam at times.
A right little madam that uses hammers, guns, knives and whatever else she can get her strangely aged looking hands on to murder, maim and cause general mayhem.
Horror Hints #36 – Never become a recovering alcoholic. When someone tries to kill you, nobody will believe you.
All this murderous behaviour means that Lee Remick, sorry, Kate Coleman soon grows to hate and fear Esther. But because she’s a recovering alcoholic nobody believes her. When she speaks about her fears with her husband and psychiatrist they basically just laugh, pull faces and mimic someone swigging from a bottle behind her back.
Thank god then that a bit of internet research by Kate (she Googled 'horror film plot evil children') uncovers a phone number for an Estonian mental hospital...
... resulting in a phone conversation with a nice Estonian with a beard who reveals an okay-ish plot twist along with the information that Esther is a psycho killer. To be fair, the film from this point on does get quite exciting in an obvious sort of way, as Kate rushes back to the family home in a bid to save her husband and daughter from the malevolent mock-minor.
Horror Hints #34 – If you manage to knock out a psycho killer with a gun, take the gun and shoot them in the head. Just to make sure.
And that’s it. Go in with low expectations and you might just find that The Orphan is worth it. And to end on a positive note, the performance by young Isabelle Fuhrman is very, very good. Oh, I almost forgot one...
Horror Hints #82 – If you have children, don’t live in a house right next to an icy lake.
Actually, that probably is genuinely good advice. Take it from me, ice can be dangerous... (hops off into the sunset)
House of Dark Shadows - Walk with me, won’t you? My mom and I are heading to the Benson Theater on 86th Street. We are in Bensonhurst Brooklyn, in New York. The year is 1970, or so,...
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