There is an idea that if a production involves any mention of supernatural elements, it necessarily turns into terror and therefore must have moments of fright and apprehension. Because of this belief and the erroneous disclosures that make a point of selling the works in this way, to be more striking, much is lost in good productions that are poorly understood.
The Orphans (The Turning) suffers from this problem, as well as the novel in which it was adapted, The Screw Turn, in Henry James, which is constantly mentioned as a work of terror, even if it is not really about this theme. The story, originally written in 1898, is focused on a two-orphaned guardian who is haunted by the possible evil of the seemingly innocent children, who may or may not come from spirits she thinks she sees in the house.
The plot of the film follows this proposal faithfully, only updating the time to the 90s, brilliantly set early in production by mentioning the recent death of Kurt Cobain. When the teacher Kate (Mackenzie Davis) begins to serve as a private tutor for the small Flora (Brooklynn Prince), aged 7, is forced to move to the mansion to educate the child. However, in the early days of her job, she discovers that her older brother Miles (Finn Wolfhard) was expelled from school for violent behavior, ends up having to take care of both and distrusts the boy's actions.
Between the possible appearances of spirits of the people who previously worked on the site and the suspicion that the children are doing something evil to get rid of it, Kate finds herself caught between reality and confusion, where there is no certainty about the source of the events, if it is. even of a haunting, whether they are children or a question of the character's possible schizophrenia.
Like a horror movie, The Orphans it really won't please. Investing very little in scary elements, the film becomes tiring in some parts, especially for those who expect a terrifying plot.
However, as a thriller psychological, which is his true proposal, the film works and very well, leaving the right questions in each scene, which are reinforced by the great performances of the cast, mainly by Mackenzie Davis, who leaves in his expressions the doubts about what he is seeing be real. At his side, the talented Finn Wolfhard reinforces the ambiguity of the facts, alternating between moments of sympathy and evident malice.
The production debuts as a great behavioral analysis, criticizing much of the privileged education of young people and exploring how far the human mind can take it. It is a work for those who like to pay attention to details and investigate each event, regardless of a solution described in detail, but having fun analyzing together the ambiguities that could easily be experienced by anyone.