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The New Daughter (2009)

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A single father moves his two children to rural South Carolina, only to watch his daughter exhibit increasingly strange behavior.


Luiso Berdejo (as Luis Berdejo)


John Travis (screenplay), John Connolly (short story)
1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Costner ... John James
Ivana Baquero ... Louisa James
Samantha Mathis ... Cassandra Parker
Gattlin Griffith ... Sam James
Erik Palladino ... Officer Ed Lowry
Noah Taylor ... Professor Evan White
James Gammon ... Roger Wayne
Sandra Ellis Lafferty ... Mrs. Amworth
Margaret Anne Florence ... Alexis Danella
Christopher Harvey ... Rick Ross
Brynn Massey Brynn Massey ... Sally
Martin Thompson ... Stewart Green
Nevaina Graves Rhodes Nevaina Graves Rhodes ... Pam
Rob Bonz Rob Bonz ... Adrian
James Middleton James Middleton ... Scott


John James is a writer; his wife has left him. He moves with his middle-school aged daughter and young son to an isolated house off a dirt road in South Carolina. The property has an Indian burial mound, which fascinates his daughter, Louisa, who's entering puberty. Strange things: noises on the roof and in the woods, the cat missing, Luisa sleepwalking clutching a straw doll no one's seen before. She visits the mound often, staying late, coming home covered with mud. John's younger son, Sam, is frightened. John learns the house has a history and seeks out the previous owner. Louisa's behavior becomes more bizarre. Is there an explanation? An ant farm and a missing babysitter provide clues. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


How Far Will A Father Go To Protect The Ones He Loves?


Horror | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for thematic material including violence, disturbing images and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »






Release Date:

7 October 2010 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

La otra hija See more »


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Last cinema film of James Gammon. See more »


James and his contractor prepare a batch of ANFO (ammonium nitrate + fuel oil) to blow up the mound. This is a 'tertiary' explosive, which means you cannot set it off with fire. It would just burn. To set off the detonation, you need to explode a secondary explosive, like a stick of dynamite, which in turn needs to be set off with a primary explosive, like a blasting cap. See more »


[first lines]
John James: [driving up to their new house] There it is.
Sam James: Real big.
John James: Mm. Want to go in first?
Sam James: Really?
John James: I don't see why not.
[turning to his daughter in the car]
John James: Are you coming? So?
Louisa James: [sulking] So what?
John James: So what do you... what do you think?
See more »

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User Reviews

It Does Manage To Rise Above Its Clichés
17 September 2012 | by sddavis63See all my reviews

As this movie opens, it seems to be literally riddled with clichés. A recent divorced father (Kevin Costner) decides to move with his two children into a creepy old house in the country, where they find what appears to be an old Indian burial ground. That really didn't seem to require much thought, did it. I was disappointed; somehow I was expecting something just a little more imaginative; a bit more out of the ordinary. I do have to give credit to the writers , though. After that extremely cliché opening, they manage to introduce a pretty well crafted story that rises above those clichés and that creates some suspense in the viewer.

Costner was the movie's greatest strength. He brought a well known presence to this movie and he played the part of the increasingly confused and concerned father quite well. Happily (from my point of view) the movie avoided going for yet another cliché - although there was the opportunity, there was no romance introduced for Costner. For the most part, the focus of the story remained pretty much on his strained relationship with his daughter and his increasing concern for her well being. The kids in this movie (Ivana Baquero and Gattlin Griffith) weren't amazing, but they also didn't detract from the story the way some child actors can. They were believable enough.

Director Luiso Berdejo (who has very little experience as a director) did a decent job using the setting to good advantage, and he created a realistic atmosphere of suspense, slowly rising to fear. There were a couple of things I found awkward in the movie. The introduction of the university professor and his TA, for example. They served little purpose except to give an explanation of what might have been happening with the burial mound. Perhaps there could have been a better way of unravelling the mystery than the introduction of a couple of otherwise unimportant and unnecessary characters. Also, although I fully understand the use of the analogy, the ant farm really wasn't required. I would have understood the movie even without it, and somehow it cheapened this a bit; it's the sort of plot device you expect to see in a made for TV movie.

This isn't bad. It's not one of the great horror movies of all time, but it isn't bad. (6/10)

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