‘The Orphan: First Murder’ – The Good Daughter

With the sequel to ‘La orphana’ I have had the same feeling that I had at the time with ‘The good son’: Both films grow in the face of your lack of expectations. I accidentally saw that 1993 movie. At that time still marked by the VHS, the film was after the one that had actually been recorded (which, ironically, I don’t remember what it was). Out of simple laziness, I stayed lying down watching how it started, convinced that it would stop after a few minutes. However, he didn’t, and I ended up watching it in its entirety, becoming a pleasant surprise that I haven’t forgotten almost 30 years later. Not even half the years have passed, and I have already completely forgotten the first “orphan”. It didn’t seem like anything special to me, and I approached this sequel out of curiosity to see Isabelle Fuhrman again as the protagonist. Yes, I know it’s a prequel… but it’s inevitable to think of it as a sequel: “They sing” the years that have passed since the first one, no matter how much the film pretends it doesn’t seem like it. A decision that, on the other hand, “marks” the personality and tone of a film that, to tell the truth, takes itself as seriously as, for example, James Wan’s ‘Malignant’ did. This second “orphan” is above all a playful film that thrives on the lack of ambitions that are supposed to surround it, establishing with the viewer a complicity similar to that of the first ‘Scream’ but without going into the meta. As if they were two looks that meet and without saying anything, they understood each other. As if those responsible were spectators before professionals, and had rebelled at the possibility of making an opportunistic late sequel to a blockbuster that would only serve to pay next year’s rent. If something stands out in this new “orphan”, it is its festive character. In addition to paying next year’s rent, those responsible have also had fun. And they have done it with something as simple as adequately subverting the life line of the movies that kept video stores open for many years. Something as simple as at the same time, effective: A change of compass that is received with a smile, converting the same as for example ‘Freddy vs. Jason’ an alleged gimmicky horror film in a playful entertainment whose shamelessness is most enjoyable. And by the way, it turns Esther into an icon of the genre similar to the one John Wick is for his.

By Juan Pairet Iglesias