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Monday, January 17, 2011

Case 39 (2009)

An overworked, stressed out social worker (Renee Zellweger) is assigned the case of a 10 year old girl (Jodelle Ferland) who is terrified of her parents (Callum Keith Rennie, Kerry O'Malley), who she says want to send her to Hell. After a shocking and brutal murder attempt on her life by her parents who are declared insane, Zellweger takes the girl into her home. That's when the real horror begins as the social worker discovers things aren't always what they seem. Originally shot in 2006, the film sat on the shelf until it was released in 2009 internationally and late 2010 in the U.S. Is it that bad? No, but it's poorly written and some of the dialogue is cringe inducing. Example: after stopping a murder attempt, a police detective (Ian McShane) angrily snaps, "What kind of people are you?" Duh! Child abuse and any harm to a child are deeply disturbing but what if that child is literally the spawn of Satan? Well, it doesn't make it any less unpleasant. If one has a fondness for demon child movies like BAD SEED and THE OMEN then you might find it tolerable and there's no denying some of the film's horror set pieces have some pull. Zellweger expresses hysteria and terror very nicely, it's a pity her character weren't sharper. With Bradley Cooper in one of the film's unfortunate CGI sequences.

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