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Sunday, 31 January 2010

Review: Case 39 (15) ★
A social worker (Zellweger) fights to save a girl from her abusive parents, only to discover that the situation is more dangerous than she ever expected.

Case 39 is a film you have watched many many times before, sure the title is different and there are different actors present but believe me, you've watched it.

The film is as the plot says above, with a demon possession clumsily added with no definitive explanation as to how or why. Throw in some screams, hornets, ropey special effects and roll credits. Everything in the film is a by-product of other movies, so much in fact that you start saying to yourself throughout 'that scene reminds me of tha' and 'that bit reminds me of this'. It is storytelling and screen-writing at its laziest, take good bits of other movies, put them in this rubbish and hey presto 100mins of dross tied together with other peoples work.

If this isn't bad enough they even go for the cheapest form of scare tactics with no original thought included here either - dog jumping up at someone from off camera (check), someone appearing in a window that wasn't there a second ago (check), noise in the closet? nope nothing there, best just check behind that rack of clothes though ..... (check).

The lead characters don't help matters either as again you've seen them numerous times before. Zellweger as the social worker is completely unbelievable in the lead role and looks visibly disinterested, she just can't pull off anything other than the kooky, ditsy one in rom-coms. Ian McShane plays the by-the-numbers friendly detective who at first doesn't believe Zellweger but then (by one simple phone call no less), believes EVERYTHING. Jodelle Ferland brings nothing new to the 'creepy kid' role and at times just appears annoying rather than mysterious or scary.

There really is nothing in this formulaic movie to waste your time or money on. If you want to watch a proper 'creepy kid' movie done right, with real scares and story then seek out any original Asian horror such as A Tale of Two Sisters or Ringu (stay away from remakes).