Case 39 2010

Case 39

Critics Consensus

Director Christian Alvert has a certain stylish flair, but it's wasted on Case 39's frightless, unoriginal plot.

21%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 76

39%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 67,795

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Movie Info

In her many years as a social worker, Emily Jenkins (Renée Zellweger) thinks she has seen it all -- until she meets 10-year-old Lilith (Jodelle Ferland) and the girl's cruel parents. When the parents try to harm the child, Emily assumes custody of Lilith while looking for a foster family. However, she soon finds that dark forces surround the seemingly innocent child, and the more she tries to protect Lilith, the more horrors she encounters.

Cast & Crew

Renée Zellweger
Emily Jenkins
Jodelle Ferland
Lillith Sullivan
Ian McShane
Detective Mike Barron
Kerry O'Malley
Margaret Sullivan
Callum Keith Rennie
Edward Sullivan
Ray Wright
Screenwriter
Hagen Bogdanski
Cinematographer
John Willett
Production Design
Monique Prudhomme
Costume Designer
Michl Britsch
Original Music
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News & Interviews for Case 39

Critic Reviews for Case 39

All Critics (76) | Top Critics (15) | Fresh (16) | Rotten (60)

Audience Reviews for Case 39

  • Jun 03, 2016
    Was led to believe I could expect great things from Case 39. In my two experiences watching it, the first involved me falling asleep, and today (the second) had me checking my watch constantly. It's not even that long. It just drags. The Hell. On.
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • Apr 26, 2015
    The strangely enticing opportunity to see comedic actress Renée Zellwegger as the stressed and confused foster parent of a contemporary Omen child cant save the disappointment that is met upon finishing the film. Unfortunately, Case 39 just isn't very memorable whatsoever. Alot of the scenes featured in the picture such as the repetetive circling on an office chair by the demonic child become quite grating and annoying. Whilst the film does have its fair share of genuinely intriguing twists and turns (the Hornets scene for example) and the performance by the young Jodelle Ferland is gripping enough to attain our attention throughout the duration, the film is generally a letdown.
    Harry W Super Reviewer
  • May 19, 2013
    While a Zellweger fan (and she does well here) this story about innocent looking and acting DEMON CHILD! has been done before and better, and hoping and wishing for a new wrinkle here won't make it real. Ahh, well ... better luck next time.
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer
  • Jun 14, 2012
    Edward Sullivan: They say when you're born you're given your eternal soul. The part of you that lives on, lives again. Whatever evil she is,didn't come from us. It was already there. From the moment she came into being, she brought something with her. Something older, destructive. Soul of a demon.  "Some cases should never be opened." Not as terrible as I expected, but I expected the worst. Case 39 is still just recycled parts from better evil kid horror movies, like The Bad Seed and Orphan. It ends up playing like a more entertaining form of The Good Son. It also has a lot of things that just don't add up when examined closely, but that is the least of its problems. The biggest problem the film has is that its target audience is going to hate it and find it repetitive in the least. The target audience for this film are the people who enjoy the evil kid horror genre. And guess what; we've seen them all. So this isn't going to cut it. When you try to make a movie like this, you have to come up with something new, strange, and terrifying to add to the formula. If you can't, the result will be a failure, like Case 39. The sweetness of the little girl is played off terribly. I don't know if that is a result of her acting skills or bad writing. It may just be a combination of the two. To be honest though, the movie does have a decent start. It all goes downhill quickly though, because the writing is terrible and stuff just doesn't add up. Why would the little girl be afraid of telling the social workers about her situation because the father gives her a nasty look? She's the evil one. I know we aren't supposed to know that then, but damn have some foresight in your fucking script.  There is some entertainment value in the movies awfulness. I can say I was never bored by the movie. I can also say that a lot of the entertainment I got from it came from me laughing at the ridiculousness of some of the scenes. I could talk about everything I hated in the movie, but that would take all day. Let's just leave it by saying it's bad. Maybe if you have never seen another movie in the sub genre, you will find it intriguing; but if you have, I would suggest skipping it.
    Melvin W Super Reviewer

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