It seems strange that anyone would choose to make a sequel to Orphan, a pretty good but not that well remembered horror film from way back in 2009. And it would seem even stranger to bring back the child star (Isabelle Fuhrman) from the first film, she was 12 at the time and is now 25, and ask her to play the same role only this time her character is even younger than she was in the original.

With all that going for it Orphan: First Kill shouldn’t really work but surprisingly it does. Due to some good and sometimes not so good CGI and I imagine body doubles Furman manages to convince us once again that she’s the evil child, Esther.

The story takes us back to Esther’s early life in the Saarne Institute. If you haven’t seen the original and it’s not really a spoiler to say that Esther is actually a 33-year-old Estonian woman named Leena Klammer who has hypopituitarism, a rare hormonal disorder that stunts her physical growth and causes proportional dwarfism, because of her condition Esther has spends all of her time posing as a little girl.

Escaping from the institute, Esther manages to pass herself off as the long missing daughter of a wealthy American couple (Julia Stiles and Rossif Sutherland).

The first half of Orphan: First Kill plays pretty much like a remake of the original as Esther starts controlling the family and knocking off anyone who might guess her secret. However things take an unexpected turn in the second half when some hidden family secrets come to light meaning that Esther’s not in as much control of her destiny as she would like to be.

Orphan: First Kill is a hugely enjoyable slice of horror fun, Styles is terrific as the protective mother whilst Fuhrman steps back into her role with ease.

Esther’s back and hopefully it won’t be another 13 years until she makes a reappearance.


Orphan: First Kill

1h 39m

Director: William Brent Bell
Cast: Isabelle Fuhrman, Rossif Sutherland, Julia Stiles.

UK Release: Cinemas 19th August 2022