Case 39: good, bad, meh

I’d been holding out watching Case 39 mostly due to the fact that Bradley Cooper stars in it, and it turns out my instinct to avoid it because of him was right in this case, because omfg he is HORRIBLE in this movie. I mean, look at that photo! That’s him being terrified! Seriously. What.

That said, this movie wasn’t a total wash – because the supporting cast totally killed it, and the premise was pretty interesting. I just wish they hadn’t ruined it all with the stupidest ending ever.

To recap (with spoilers): 

THE GOOD

  • Jodelle Ferland was amazing. AMAZING. She has a talent for playing creepy little girls, and she should stick with it. She was absolutely frightening when she showed a little bit of her bad side and coldly demanded what she wanted.
  • Callum Keith Rennie & Kerry O’Malley also do an excellent job as her poor, crazy parents.
  • Putting your kid in an oven and duct-taping the door shut? ‘nuff said.
  • The idea that a baby could be possessed by a demon at birth, then grow up to systematically slaughter everyone around her just by “suggesting” it to them is pretty awesome.
  • I’m also fond of this convention, in which obviously any adult trying to claim a child is the devil or out to get them is going to branded insane and unreasonable, while the child is going to be rescued and taken care of – the perfect opportunity for them to get away with everything.
  • That bee scene, tho it involved bad acting on Cooper’s part, was an icktastic and terrifyingly gross idea.
  • Actually, every death was pretty gruesomely conceived and executed. I dug them all.

THE BAD

  • Renee Zellweger, I don’t know what you’re doing in this movie but you shouldn’t be here. You were as terrible as…
  • Bradley Cooper. A man who cannot do anything except look smug and smarmy.
  • Ian McShane – whom I LOVE, was totally underused here, and his character didn’t make any sense. It took one 2 minute phone call to change his mind about the girl, which is so so lame.
  • Overall it seemed like Renee herself, and her allies, accepted the truth way too soon and way too easily. Seems like it should have been drug out more.
  • They set up everything so well for a killer ending, but they flaked out and did the lame thing. And not just once, a few times. This has multiple re-writes all over it.

In the end it was just “meh” overall, which is too bad. If they’d gotten a good screenwriter and insisted on carrying through the set-up to the end, it could have been a decent little horror flick.

Not recommended, unless you’re terribly bored – or if you’re curious about Ferland’s brilliance.

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