The backdrop starts with a scene of a pregnant woman heading to a hospital with the husband for delivery of the child, and quickly turns sour as things began to grostesquely go out of control. Happiness was exchanged for fear as blood came pouring like a wet sponge pressed from the woman's womb, and in the delivery room was the woman, Kate, our protagonist (more like wooden mother character) faces the nightmare of her life: stillbirth.
Life is hard for Kate, months have passed since then the scene of her nightmarish encounter with stillbirth, the cut of her C-section operation on her womb to remove the dead baby from her body clearly marked her period of fear and panic is still not over. However, of all the things she had, she had love inside her, the love of a mother, and she wanted to give it to someone who needs it.
So she and husband John wanted to adopt a child, and thus went and do so. Their choice was made with Esther, a 9 year old child who is incredibly old-fashioned, matured, and speaks perfect English and chooses to paint, play with the younger sister who is deaf and mute, and loves the parents oh so much. On first sight, Esther is all that Kate and John could ask for in a child, she is mild mannered, well trained, orderly, and has a special uniqueness about her that separates her from the children of her age.
However, things soon change.
At the start of school, like all kids would they jeer her for her difference, and she gave a cold cold stare to the girl who did that to her. Somewhere down the line, they tried pranks with her and she threw a fit, even further down they found her apparently pushing a kid of her class, the one who jeered her then down a flight of a slide at a playpen.
More and more things pile up, and is it any strange coincidence to find her in the middle of all the happenings? Then, the suspicions came, but then John, the father, being the kind father who refuses to believe her sweet 9 year old adopted child is capable of such evil acts, much less believes in omens of the devilish girl he adopted with Kate, did not believe in Kate's rampaging anger...until...the family begins to crack under the pressure of the strange things that surround little Esther's perfect little smile behind her ribbon.
Oh...yes, the ribbons on her neck and her wrists... why doesn't she ever take them off?
The suspense begins...and a fun fun fun...movie begins to have you gripping to the edges of your seat.
(plus, this is why you should never trust the lolis)
Aside from the somewhat totally unbelievable ending struggle as per all movies done in this genre, this movie scores high on my watched list of some of the greatest thriller movies of this day. Done in the hands of a barely known director, I'd say not only the crop of actors and actresses stand out on their special givings (aside from mommy Kate really, who is just wooden and atypical); but the acting itself tops some of the best movies of this genre I have seen.
Esther is cold, precise, and manipulative, one can't help but be captured by the elegance of her ways, yet shiver in fear as she hammers the victim into submission, and then tricks the deaf mute little sister to keep the secret. One cannot help but praise her change of character ever so vividly after she moved in with the household, and even grown to admire how she places these little chess pieces about the house, her chess pieces made of her own family to move as she desires. The set-ups she plays to make Kate ever looking so much as the psychotic violent mother who wants to kill her adopted daughter, and driving John to become her puppet on a string...
Then...the last middle bit came when she realizes her shortcomings... she went into a hysterical rampage that few directors have really manage to capture on screen with such vivid actuality that one cannot help but savor every single moment of our on-screen psycho darling Esther, whom usually carries an old bible to school, keeps her ponytails at her sides and dresses ever so formally as though she was attending Sunday Mass on her best behavior go crazy in her room.
If there was one thing I liked best about this show is how much your vision, the audience just can't seem to guide oneself away from Esther, at every scene she must be present, you want her, you lust for her. It wasn't some sexual lust, but rather the look on her face, that smirk she carries whenever she succeeds at hiding what she's done, when she successfully smothered the truth behind closed doors and made Kate look like a psycho bitch... Oh, the play acting, she was perfect! She was like the gem, the gem you can't pull away from.
To me, this sums up as the best film this year in this genre compared with horrible horrible intruder in your home film Last House on The Left earlier months ago which I could not be bothered with a review of. Expect lots of seat gripping plots that really keep you guessing, dear dear Esther, what are you going to do next?
Oh by the way, her gradual progress to losing her normally perfect English in favor of something more... should I say... 'origin' of her accent is something that should be noted throughout the film, I am sure you will agree just that alone portrays her twistedness, and certainly ups my image and yours too of little Esther's image as the 'good little girl'.
Sometimes...looks can be VERY deceiving... the moral of the story is... don't look down on the lolis, you may get exactly what you don't want as a result.
Oh by the way, the film is released on July 24th and only came so recently to our shores, and that day was my Birthday so yeah, thank you Esther! I had the best belated Birthday gift ever.