Well, if this internet commenter’s supposed spoiler is to be revealed, lil’ oprhan Esther’s secret is out of the bag, and it’s even more batshit insane than I could’ve ever anticipated. I won’t explicitly discuss the details, but I’ll say this: It’s honestly such an impressively thought-out, completely out-of-nowhere sort of twist that I believe it. And want to see this movie immediately so I can confirm its validity. Not since the phrase “non-religious identical twin stigmata” has an ending scaled such heights of so-bad-it’s-brilliant absurdity. Seriously, y’all, it’s so damn trashtastically awful that it’s pretty much seals the deal: Orphan is destined for of camp/cult/bad horror movie greatness.
On one hand, if it’s true, I’ll be terribly disappointed to not have such a wonderfully gonzo revelation dropped in my lap in the final moments of the film. But on the other hand:
No, poster, obviously the interwebs cannot keep a secret. In the age of the internet, nobody can keep their trap shut to save their damn life, and it’s a rather brilliant move on the part of Orphan‘s marketing campaign to sell a film all around a climactic narrative reveal in a time where spoilers are all but anticipated. When you think about it, it’s a clever spin on an old advertising tradition.
The American trailer for Clouzot’s Diabolique begged audiences to not reveal the ending, and Hitchcock himself was so determined to keep the surprises in Psycho a secret that he notoriously forbid audiences into the theater after the film began. These movies touted their secrets like a carrot on a string, but in the internet era we cut the carrot loose and throw it to the hungry masses. Had the ad campaign behind Orphan really wanted it to stay a secret, they would’ve never acknowledged it in the first place; instead, they seem to view any buzz, including spoiler buzz, as good buzz. And they’re right.
True or not true, the “spoiled” ending linked above will only stoke the flames of curiosity surrounding the film. Even if this twist is true, it’s so positively outlandish that you pull a Meryl Streep, have your doubts to its validity, and then plunk down 12 bucks just to be certain. That the rest of the film looks to be a hysterics-laden, garishly over-the-top Bad-Seed-esque horror film was always reason enough to see Orphan. But it’s the ending (if it is the ending), in all its tawdry Gothic perversity, makes this film a bona fide must-see.
And, should anybody pull a Sister Aloysius on me about how it’s going to be a shitshow of undeniable greatness, I need only remind you that Orphan, like I Know Who Killed Me two years prior, is being released on the last weekend of July. Awesomely-bad-horror-movie lightning, y’all: It’s does strike twice.