The Orphanage - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Orphanage Reviews

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July 30, 2018
This must be the scariest movie I've ever seen. It's such a horrific masterpiece.
July 28, 2018
Very interesting movie , rarely to see that good horror
July 11, 2018
Sumamente desconcertante película de terror elevada por su guión y sustos bien ganados.
½ July 8, 2018
An incredibly smart and emotional horror film, El Orfanato is a modern classic. Bayona does an amazing job building an atmosphere and Belén Rueda delivers a performance comparable to Nicole Kidman in The Others. The plot twist is amazing and the ending is so touching that is one of the best of genre.
½ June 27, 2018
One of those slightly creepy horror fairytales that tend to make viewers fall to sleep when they watch it late at night.
December 28, 2017
director J.A. Bayona and Guillermo del Toro tell a very good ol fashioned ghost story
the film is effectively spooky given that it deals with spirits of children and the woman who grew up in it returns to find out what happened to her son
there's some good emotion at the end to go with it all
nothing too overblown here thankfully
October 31, 2017
I pretty much called every step along the way, but it was still beautiful. Perfect ending, some really creepy moments... everything you would expect from Guillermo del Toro.
October 28, 2017
A dull, long, and confused movie that could have been much scarier. It ended up being a very boring drama. Too bad...a missed opportunity
½ October 22, 2017
The Orphanage is frightning and contains a constant dark and heavy atmosphere. The written is clever, the story is twisted and refreshing in this genre. It is absolutely a great choice if you miss old-school horror movies, but with an original story, good soundtrack and good performances.
September 24, 2017
This movie is amazing ! Soooo scary and great storyline, definitely 1 of my favorite scary movies ! You need to see this movie will not regret it I guarantee that!
September 13, 2017
Omg this was one amazing movie!! It is def intense and creepy as hell and the ending is just so beautiful. A def need to watch.
September 4, 2017
Phenomenal movie! Amazing story telling and even though it deals with a dark subject it brings a beauty and peace that few can deliver. One of my favorite movies and a must watch for thriller fans. Does not have many scares but has some genuinely creepy moments that deliver some chills!
½ September 3, 2017
The trailers did this movie a disservice by selling it as another run of the mill horror. Not like the gore filled, screaming horrors of Saw, Hostel and the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, this film is a beautifully understated story of a woman looking for her lost child who is willing to venture into the supernatural to be re-united with him. Belen Rueda is completely captivating as Laura and carries a great deal of the film on her own as the secrets of the orphanage are slowly unravelled and the film builds to it's revelation. A very well told, satisfying film that may bring tears to your eyes and leave it's beautiful soundtrack playing in your head for days.
½ September 1, 2017
While sometimes slow and Simon was annoying,the great performance from Belen Rueda and the great atmosphere help create a great haunted house story. Also the multiple shocking plot twist.
½ August 27, 2017
The Orphanage looks and feels like a horror film, but in reality it's more of a supernatural thriller. It has some ghostly elements, and there are certainly some intense moments but it's not all that scary. Because of this, I actually liked it a lot. There's also a mystery element to the story which I always enjoy. Through most of the film I found myself trying to puzzle out what was happening and if there was a traditional answer or if the truth was something more mystical.

Belén Rueda is totally spectacular as the protagonist. She has such relatable moments in The Orphanage and her reactions are authentic. This is how a mother would behave in these situations. I also thought Fernando Cayo was great as her husband. You can see the journey he goes on as he wants so desperately to believe his wife and support her, but he reaches his limits. The kids in the movie are adorable and also good actors, which is a tough combination to find.

The segment of the film that I liked the least was the interaction with the supernatural investigators. There's this element to that sequence that feels out of touch with the tone of everything that came before. Also it seems to commit this film more firmly to the idea of ghosts being real, when I liked the ambiguity. The ending of the film is one of the most interesting things I've ever seen because it almost made me question how I should feel. While The Orphanage isn't my favorite style of film, it was fascinating and I'd like to see it again.
½ April 9, 2017
Actress Belen Rueda is terrific in this ghost mystery that does not settle for jump scares, excessive special effects or gore. Plays more than a bit on a horror version of Peter Pan Neverland mythos.
½ March 15, 2017
I used to love children. Now I don't.
March 12, 2017
a brilliant movie with a great ending
½ January 23, 2017
Solid gothic film. Anyone who is a parent can relate to this film. Not super scary but compelling none the less. Loved the ending.
Super Reviewer
½ January 7, 2017
Sometimes the best thing a horror film can do is simplify itself. The Orphanage benefits from having a strong and grounded performance from Belén Rueda, without overwhelming it's plot with supernatural clichés and jump scares.

One thing is for certain, J.A. Bayona is phenomenal director. I've heard great things about his upcoming 'A Monster Calls', 'The Impossible' is one of the most heart-wrenching films of all time, and The Orphanage kicked off his directing with a bang. But there's one thing all of those films have in common, they deal with a mother's relationship to her son. I've obviously never met Bayona, but he had to have a strong connection to his mother. And among other things, that was the most satisfying element to The Orphanage. Guillermo del Toro produced this, and as much as I love a lot of his films, sometimes his films are more about spectacle than they are about real human emotion. Luckily, Bayona gave plenty of that to The Orphanage.

Movies about disappearances or deaths of children are always very difficult to watch. Especially the films that take a horror approach, like The Orphanage. Kids are always creepy in horror-thrillers, there's just no two ways about it. But as long as Belén Rueda keeps her performance grounded, this movie stays afloat.

This movie certainly delves into some things that we have seen in horror films before, mostly having to do with supernatural ideas or dream-like people returning from the dead, but I never found myself all that invested in those scenes. I'm far more interested in seeing how a mother reacts to her child go missing. The film doesn't necessarily have as many layers as other horror-thrillers, but as a first time director, I couldn't have asked for more from Bayona. Hopefully 'A Monster Calls' and The Jurassic World sequel continue the string of great work from him.

+Mother-son relationship

+Stays relatively grounded

+Simple story...

-...Could have had a little bit more depth

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