The Orphan First Kill is the prequel that did not need to be made. It is a negligible addition to the universe that adds little to the lore. The prequel focuses on the events before the first movie, but nothing interesting happens. The acting was great, but it is wasted on a boring story with questionable writing. Do yourself a favor and skip this movie.
I went back and re-watched the first movie to see how it compared. It has been a while, and I wanted to make sure that my opinion of the movie wasn’t a memory made better because I was so bored with First Kill. The original is a far better movie. It isn’t perfect, but at least it was entertaining. First Kill doesn’t have any real direction. It pads the run time with sappy family moments then teases you with an interesting and unexpected twist, only to become another generic horror movie that isn’t worth your time.
This movie has a few good moments, but not enough to save it. I am going to spoil this movie to make my point. It doesn’t matter because you shouldn’t watch yourself, but a warning is still in order.
Ester goes to kill the detective that has been asking too many questions. In his final breaths, as Ester stands over him asking how he knew she was lying, a bullet pierces his head and leaves him lifeless. As he bleeds onto the carpet, Ester turns to see Julia Styles holding a gun. Styles confronts Ester about her lie, but instead of killing Ester and ending the movie, she blackmails Ester into keeping up the charade. Styles had been covering up the murder of the original Ester, and the new Ester was the piece she needed to make her husband happy again.
This was a great moment that easily stands out against the blandness carried throughout the rest of this film, but it is a moment wasted because the rest of the movie doesn’t have any of this energy. I liked that Ester was made a victim because it puts the audience in an uncomfortable position. Do they root for Ester who is conning the family and has a murderous past, or do you root for the family the dark secret she is conning that also wants her dead? It makes me mad that such an interesting idea sits so comfortably within such a disappointing movie.
You can stream this on Paramount+, but I wouldn’t bother.