7.1/10
218,034
635 user 218 critic

Phone Booth (2002)

Stuart Shepard finds himself trapped in a phone booth, pinned down by an extortionist's sniper rifle.

Director:

Writer:

Reviews
Popularity
3,444 ( 197)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Panic Room (2002)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A divorced woman and her diabetic daughter take refuge in their newly-purchased house's safe room, when three men break-in, searching for a missing fortune.

Director: David Fincher
Stars: Jodie Foster, Kristen Stewart, Forest Whitaker
Flightplan (2005)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A bereaved woman and her daughter are flying home from Berlin to America. At 30,000 feet, the child vanishes, and nobody will admit she was ever on the plane.

Director: Robert Schwentke
Stars: Jodie Foster, Peter Sarsgaard, Sean Bean
Disturbia (2007)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A teen living under house arrest becomes convinced his neighbor is a serial killer.

Director: D.J. Caruso
Stars: Shia LaBeouf, David Morse, Carrie-Anne Moss
Eagle Eye (2008)
Action | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Jerry and Rachel are two strangers thrown together by a mysterious phone call from a woman they have never met. Threatening their lives and family, she pushes Jerry and Rachel into a series of increasingly dangerous situations, using the technology of everyday life to track and control their every move.

Director: D.J. Caruso
Stars: Shia LaBeouf, Michelle Monaghan, Rosario Dawson
21 (2008)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

"21" is the fact-based story about six MIT students who were trained to become experts in card counting and subsequently took Vegas casinos for millions in winnings.

Director: Robert Luketic
Stars: Jim Sturgess, Kate Bosworth, Kevin Spacey
The Recruit (2003)
Action | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A brilliant young CIA trainee is asked by his mentor to help find a mole in the Agency.

Director: Roger Donaldson
Stars: Al Pacino, Colin Farrell, Bridget Moynahan
Vantage Point (2008)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

The attempted assassination of the American President is told and re-told from several different perspectives.

Director: Pete Travis
Stars: Dennis Quaid, Forest Whitaker, Matthew Fox
Face/Off (1997)
Action | Crime | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In order to foil an extortion plot, an FBI agent undergoes a facial transplant surgery and assumes the identity and physical appearance of a terrorist, but the plan turns from bad to worse when the same terrorist impersonates the FBI agent.

Director: John Woo
Stars: John Travolta, Nicolas Cage, Joan Allen
Speed (1994)
Action | Adventure | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A young police officer must prevent a bomb exploding aboard a city bus by keeping its speed above 50 mph.

Director: Jan de Bont
Stars: Keanu Reeves, Dennis Hopper, Sandra Bullock
S.W.A.T. (2003)
Action | Adventure | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

An imprisoned drug kingpin offers a huge cash reward to anyone that can break him out of police custody and only the LAPD's Special Weapons and Tactics team can prevent it.

Director: Clark Johnson
Stars: Samuel L. Jackson, Colin Farrell, Michelle Rodriguez
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Captain Ramey
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
ESU Commander
Edit

Storyline

Stu Shepard is a fast talking and wise cracking New York City publicist who gets out of trouble and lies with his clever charm, connections, and charisma. Stu's greatest lie is to his wife Kelly, who he is cheating on with his girlfriend, Pam. Upon answering a call in a phone booth in belief it is Pam, Stu is on the line with a dangerous yet intelligent psychopath with a sniper rifle. When realizing it is not a joke, Stu is placed in a powerful mind game of wits and corruption. The New York City Police eventually arrive thereafter and demand Stu comes out of the phone booth- but how can he when if he hangs up or leaves the booth he will die? Written by commanderblue

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

This morning everything was fine See more »

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

4 April 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Enlace mortal  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$13,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$15,021,088 (USA) (4 April 2003)

Gross:

$46,563,158 (USA) (25 July 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The principal photography on the film was completed in ten days, with an additional two days of establishing shots, pickups, and re-shoots. This accelerated filming schedule was aided by the adoption of French hours, a work schedule that skips the typical one-hour production shutdown for lunch break. See more »

Goofs

During the first couple of scenes inside the booth, the sticker on the receiver is worn out and barely readable. After the first close-up the worn out section of the sticker is replaced with a new part, boasting clearly the name of the phone company. See more »

Quotes

Stu: So you'd just whack me for no particular reason?
The Caller: Oh, I've got plenty of reasons. And you keep giving me more.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The 20th Century Fox logo blends into the white clouds that open the film. See more »


Soundtracks

Operator
Written by William Spivery
Produced by Nathan Larson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
One ringy dingy.
5 April 2003 | by (Vancouver, BC) – See all my reviews

Anyone who doubts that people are as easily programmable as Pavlov's pets need look no further Graham Bell's little box. While most of us generally don't start salivating at the sound of a ringing phone, few people (unless they work for a software help desk) can resist the urge to answer one. Pray that the darkest force that dials your number is a telemarketer.

For Stu Shephard, sincerity is little more than a fuzzy concept. A shady publicist, his life consists of spinning interconnecting webs of lies to further the careers of clients and raise his stature. In his spare time he enjoys abusing his assistant, and ignoring his wife. Stu is, is also determined to give an impressionable young actress a test run on the casting couch. When he enters the one functioning pay phone in a ten-block radius in the hopes of setting up a liaison, the phone rings. It turns out to be Stu's conscience on the line. With a sniper rifle aimed at Stu's head.

When you take into account that `Phone Booth' was filmed in just ten days, on a limited budget with a dearth of special effects, one principle actor and a single venue you could be forgiven for questioning the potential success of this film. The original November 2001 release date might give one pause - films that sit on the shelf usually do so for a reason - read `straight to video'. In this instance the studio wanted to wait until Farrell was more familiar to moviegoers. He achieved this with a little film called `Minority Report' (the name of his co-star escapes me at the moment...). `Phone Booth's' new release date had to be pushed back once again after the sniping episodes in Washington. Some things are worth the wait.

While he stole the spotlight as the maniacal hit man in `Daredevil', Farrell is faced with a different animal in `Phone Booth', an 80-minute soliloquy which lives or dies on his performance (several A-list stars walked away from the project for this very reason). Reminiscent of his much-lauded turn in `Tigerland', Farrell confirms that he isn't a one trick pony, proffering a wide-ranging display of emotions, from cocky to cathartic without straying into soap opera or comic territory. He delivers his lines with a solid fluidity rare among his peers, no simple feat when one takes into account that he's suppressing a harsh brogue. Farrell also demonstrates a presence, beyond mere charisma - his good looks can only inspire interest for so long

  • that draw the viewer into the story.




While the supporting cast - Katie Holmes as the naive ingenue and Forrest Whitaker as the good cop - fulfill their purpose, it is Keifer Sutherland who takes up what little slack there is. While the audience doesn't get to see Sutherland, he is amply menacing as the cold, otherworldly voice on the other end of the phone. The audience is never privy to who he is (`Just call me Bob') or what his motives are, but it is inconsequential - he sees all, knows all, and is clearly in charge. Unlike S&M, there are no safe words. And for a control freak like Stu nothing could be more terrifying.

Although tied to a static location, deft camera work provides action, perspective and mood with such techniques as quick pans, compressed zooming, and picture in picture sequences, while careful not to cross the gimmickry line . Enhanced sound editing bolsters the visuals: ringing phones are jarring, Bob's quietly booming voice is unsettling, and the sound of a round being chambered is deafening.

`Phone Booth' could easily have been a quirky novelty flick that played well amongst the art house set. Thanks to Farrell's performance it makes for good mainstream cinema (normally an oxymoron) and may actually make a few top ten lists.


119 of 137 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?