MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 7,580 this week

Don't Answer the Phone! (1980)

4.7
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 4.7/10 from 947 users  
Reviews: 45 user | 53 critic

A deeply disturbed photographer and Vietnam veteran, named Kirk Smith, terrorizes Los Angeles by going around strangling lingerie-clad young women in their homes while taunting Lindsay Gale... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

Fall TV Premiere Week

Many of your favorite shows are coming back, along with plenty of series premieres. Here's a list of the shows premiering between Sunday, September 21 and Friday, September 26.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 39 titles
created 08 Jul 2011
 
a list of 35 titles
created 30 Sep 2011
 
a list of 32 titles
created 31 Aug 2012
 
a list of 33 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 35 titles
created 3 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Don't Answer the Phone! (1980)

Don't Answer the Phone! (1980) on IMDb 4.7/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Don't Answer the Phone!.
1 win. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Mortuary I (1983)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

Convinced that her father's death was not accidental, a beautiful girl decides to investigate to find out the truth, aided by her boyfriend. Her sleuthing draws her to a local mortuary, where many secrets will be revealed.

Director: Howard Avedis
Stars: Mary Beth McDonough, David Wallace, Bill Paxton
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  

During a New Year's Eve celebration, a Punk Rock & New Wave show host gets a phone call saying that when New Year's strikes in each time zone, someone will be murdered--and she will be the last one.

Director: Emmett Alston
Stars: Roz Kelly, Kip Niven, Chris Wallace
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A young man, Marco, working as a butcher, accidentally kills a taxi driver. His girlfriend Paula wants to go to the police so he has to kill her too. He then has to kill his brother, his ... See full summary »

Director: Eloy de la Iglesia
Stars: Vicente Parra, Emma Cohen, Eusebio Poncela
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.8/10 X  

A nightclub singer has nightmares about being involved in adultery and murder, only to wake up and find that they may not be nightmares.

Director: Alex Nicol
Stars: Peter Carpenter, Dyanne Thorne, Lory Hansen
The Prowler (1981)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A masked killer, wearing World War II U.S. Army fatigues, stalks a small New Jersey town bent on reliving a 35-year-old double murder by focusing on a group of college kids holding an annual Spring Dance.

Director: Joseph Zito
Stars: Vicky Dawson, Christopher Goutman, Lawrence Tierney
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

In this horror movie, a dutiful grand-daughter goes home to take care of her elderly grandmother. Once there, she finds herself trapped inside the house with a homicidal maniac.

Director: S.F. Brownrigg
Stars: Susan Bracken, Larry O'Dwyer, Gene Ross
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4/10 X  

After a high school track runner, named Laura, suddenly dies from a heart attack after finishing a 30-second 200-meter race, a killer wearing a sweat suit and a fencing mask begins killing ... See full summary »

Director: Herb Freed
Stars: Christopher George, Patch Mackenzie, E. Danny Murphy
The Hearse (1980)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  

Jane Hardy decides to stay the summer in the house her aunt left her when she died, to try and recoup from a bad divorce. Little does she know, her aunt practiced witchcraft and is still ... See full summary »

Director: George Bowers
Stars: Trish Van Devere, Joseph Cotten, David Gautreaux
Girly (1970)
Comedy | Crime | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A wealthy, fatherless British clan kidnaps bums and hippies and forces them to participate in an elaborate role-playing game in which they are the perfect family; those who refuse or attempt escape are ritualistically murdered.

Director: Freddie Francis
Stars: Michael Bryant, Ursula Howells, Pat Heywood
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.5/10 X  

Four young campers, Craig, Peter, Ingrid and Joanie, back-pack through the mountains for a relaxing weekend in the wilderness. They are out camping in broad daylight, while someone else is ... See full summary »

Director: James Bryan
Stars: Jack McClelland, Mary Gail Artz, James P. Hayden
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

After a seemingly innocent prank goes horribly wrong, a group of sorority sisters are stalked and murdered one by one in their sorority house while throwing a party to celebrate their graduation.

Director: Mark Rosman
Stars: Kate McNeil, Eileen Davidson, Janis Ward
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

A young bride-to-be is being stalked upon by a serial killer. She gets help from a former lover, but will they manage to escape?

Director: Armand Mastroianni
Stars: Don Scardino, Caitlin O'Heaney, Elizabeth Kemp
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Lt. Chris McCabe
Ben Frank ...
Sgt. Hatcher
...
Dr. Lindsay Gale (as Flo Gerrish)
Nicholas Worth ...
Kirk Smith
...
Lisa
Stan Haze ...
Adkins
Gary Allen ...
John Feldon
Michael D. Castle ...
Lab Man (as Michael Castle)
Pamela Jean Bryant ...
Sue Ellen (as Pamela Bryant)
Ted Chapman ...
Man in Bar
Chris Wallace ...
Psychic Von Hammensveld
Dale Kalberg ...
Nurse
Deborah Leah Land ...
Police Woman
Tom Lasswell ...
Police Psychiatrist
Mike Levine ...
Gary Markov
Edit

Storyline

A deeply disturbed photographer and Vietnam veteran, named Kirk Smith, terrorizes Los Angeles by going around strangling lingerie-clad young women in their homes while taunting Lindsay Gale, a young psychologist, by calling her on a radio call-in show to describe his sexual hang-ups and misogynistic ways, while a local police detective, Lt. McCable, is always two steps behind in trying to catch the psycho. Written by matt-282

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He'll Know You're Alone! See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 February 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Hollywood Strangler  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Nicholas Worth consulted a criminal psychologist to research his role as the killer. Moreover, Worth improvised a lion's share of his dialogue. See more »

Goofs

The first blonde victim can clearly be seen to breathe after being strangled. See more »

Quotes

Lisa: Mom, Dad, the drugs are more important than you!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Discovering 'Evil Dead' (2002) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Exploitation Lite.
27 July 2009 | by (Hampshire, England) – See all my reviews

Snickering Vietnam vet Kirk Smith (Nicholas Worth) is one hell of a sicko: for a living, he shoots obscene pornographic photos, and in his spare time, he strangles pretty young women BEFORE raping them. LA detectives Lt. Chris McCabe (James Westmoreland) and Sgt. Hatcher (Ben Frank) are hot on the maniac's heels, but can they catch him before he kills his latest target, radio psychologist Dr. Lindsay Gale (Flo Lawrence)?

With such a sleazy premise, Don't Answer The Phone looks set to be a classic slice of extremely offensive exploitation, but with director Robert Hammer reluctant to go that extra mile to offend, the film falls short of the high (or should that be low?) standards set by his contemporary William Lustig, whose similarly themed film, Maniac, goes all out to shock the viewer.

Worth's character, Kirk Smith, is an undeniably repugnant fellow, and what he gets up to certainly ain't nice, but Hammer's approach to his patently sensationalist material is surprisingly cautious: whilst he doesn't mind showing the audience a little nudity (for example, all of the victims have their tops torn off before being choked to death), he doesn't quite seem to possess the cojonas necessary to present his sex and violence in the no-nonsense manner the genre demands.

Instead, his characters simply fill us in on the salacious details through conversation: a psychic gives a graphic account of the murder and rape of one girl, offering lurid tidbits of info about Kirk's modus operandi, and several characters pass comment on the particularly explicit nature of his photography. At the risk of sounding like a dangerous psycho myself, I ask 'Where's the really good stuff?'. A few throttlings and some tits only qualify this as exploitation lite!

To be fair, Don't Answer The Phone does manage to deliver a couple of scenes that almost make the grade—Kirk strangles a junkie hooker whilst she is live on air with Dr. Gale, and one topless victim is subjected to scalding by melted candle wax— but with too many other scenes pulling their punches, this film is most likely going to disappoint fans of degenerate cinema.

5.5 out of 10, generously rounded up to 6 for IMDb.


2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Good 'n bad! Sro100
Book the film was based on rachaela
This movie? big50701
Not that bad. Ripe for a re-make SE7EN/Silence of the Lambs style TheScreenWatcher
Scorpion Releasing DVD poefan
Alex Jones would be awesome as Kirk Smith in a remake GreenGoatGhost
Discuss Don't Answer the Phone! (1980) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?