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Film Studies 101
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
15
Cast
Halle Berry
Abigail Breslin
Morris Chestnut
Michael Eklund.
Directors
Brad Anderson.
Screenwriters
Richard D'Ovidio.
Running Time
94 minutes

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The Call
Dial 1-800-tosh


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Plot
Guilt-ridden after bungling an emergency call six months earlier, 911 operator Jordan Turner (Berry) resolves to never fail a caller again. It's a determination that's soon tested when the murderer strikes again.


Review
The Call

In a 911 response centre in Los Angeles, Halle Berry is a seasoned operator haunted by the one life she failed to save — a teenager killed by a generic movie psycho six months earlier. When she improbably crosses paths with the murderer again in an identical situation, the well-worn road to redemption stretches predictably out before us. Loaded with dim-witted developments, The Call is derivative, formulaic tosh that could easily have been written for Sandra Bullock in the mid-’90s. By the time the cliché-packed final act rolls round, you’ll wish you’d hung up ages ago.


Verdict
The kind of clichéd nonsense so common in the mid-'90s, it's a throwback - and not necessarily in a good way.


Reviewed by Neil Alcock

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for The Call
Empire Star Rating

A surprise!

I really enjoyed this film. It's short. It's moves at a pace and has a feel of 24 meets End of Watch meets police procedural. The killer is reasonably creepy and by and large and it's good fun! The problem all come in the final 25 minutes whereby you realise that the link between the opening kill and the one Halle is trying to prevent - there's no cohesive link. It's a completely different type of kill that doesn't fit the murderer's MO - which is revealed in the final act. ALSO! (SPOILE... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by tysmuse at 17:10, 26 October 2014 | Report This Post


Lame

Full of stupid characters and situations, which is a shame as there is plenty of opportunity for a great Hitchcockian thriller. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Caster at 11:06, 10 June 2014 | Report This Post


RE: For kidnap & murder enquiries, please press 1.

This is as brain-dead as a movie can be and it assumes the audience will have the I.Q. of a rutabaga. ... More

Posted by chang at 12:00, 31 December 2013 | Report This Post


For kidnap & murder enquiries, please press 1.

You know times are hard when Catwoman has started working in a call-centre. The parts of The Call which operate as a tense crime thriller work very well, even if the film doesn't break any new ground. The part that's 'Mystery Inc' vs 'Hannibal'… not so much. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by TheMightyBlackout at 12:53, 29 September 2013 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

Yeah, the first hour is pretty good but, holy crap, that last act is atrocious. ... More

Posted by Shifty Bench at 15:05, 24 September 2013 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

Thought it was rather good on the whole for the first 2/3rds it just got let down by going O.T.T towards the end, which is a shame really. ... More

Posted by Wild about Wilder at 11:04, 24 September 2013 | Report This Post


RE:

For the most part this is a really tense and exciting thriller. Hale Berry issuing instructions to a scared girl trapped in the boot of a car was one of the best set pieces I've seen in a while, and for an hour or so this is a really engaging film. Then it dies an agonizingly painful death in t final ac, but there are still a few surprises to be had (the final shot could have been an ending to a SAW movie Not quite worth planning a trip to the flicks for, but if you're planning to go to the ... More

Posted by Hood_Man at 02:17, 23 September 2013 | Report This Post


You mention the mid-90s as that was the time when so many movies copied The Silence of the Lambs and this movie does the same thing. It's also derivative of Dirty Harry. Still, it was well-made and I enjoyed it even though there are some highly unlikely but plot-friendly coincidences in it. The feminist vigilante thing was also a big no-no. They probably even pinched that from Ms. 45. The Call is a Frankenstein movie made up of bits from other, better movies but there are lots of movies out ther... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by BenTramer at 12:54, 21 September 2013 | Report This Post



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