Saturday, January 16, 2010

Case 39:Film Review

Cast: Renee Zellweger, Bradley Cooper, Jodelle Ferland
Direction: Christian Alvart
Genre: Horror
Duration: 1 hour 49 minutes
Critic Rating: ***

Story: Emily, a social worker, tries to save 10-year-old girl Lillith from her murderous parents and manages to bring her home for safe custody. But has she made the right decision? Nice people around her begin dying and too many bad things start to happen....

Movie Review: Ms Bridget Jones steps down a bit and tries her hand at a typical Hollywood horror flick. But don't be disappointed, for this one does manage to keep you in your seats, despite the no-hype, no-marketing blip surrounding it. Of course, most of the credit must go to young Ms Jodelle Ferland who pitches in a startling performance of the archetypal child-demon. As the sweet yet satanic young girl who speaks politely, smiles adoringly and poses completely vulnerable, she's almost the female avatar of Damien, the devil-boy who scared your wits out in Omen.

Zellweger saves the helpless girl from her parents while they were trying to bake her in the oven and brings her home, despite insisting she ain't mommy material. It doesn't take long for her to discover her maternal instincts, but before they can actually come into play, it's time to put the brakes. Her best friend and child psychologist, Doug (Bradley Cooper), dies a mysterious death after a frightening session with her young ward; another young boy who comes in contact with little Lillith ruthlessly hacks his parents while they slept. The idyll is short lived as the sinister begins to take a hold over the social worker's life. But is there really a way out? Can she fight the evil that has entered her house and her life? Is Case 39 actually cruel to children?

May be yes. But that's another debatable question altogether. As a film, Case 39 does work at the simple, basic level of a thriller that thrills. Although Ms Zellweger does look somewhat jaded and whispers a bit too much to create her characteristic impact.
(Nikhat Kazmi,TOI,Delhi,16.1.10)

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