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An exhilarating thrill ride!
lquisp13 September 2004
Awesome flick! Kept me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. The plot twists were surprisingly convincing and I didn't have to stretch too far to suspend disbelief. It way outshone my expectations and I found myself swept right up in the action. The acting was superb and the direction kept us moving from nail-biting suspense to laughing at the stereotyped ignorant store clerks, nasty lawyers and others that are encountered at various points in the script. What a great balance of believable and amusing! We had the greatest time enjoying this film. The parts that weren't so believable were very satisfying and the parts that were believable were incredibly suspenseful. The point is, the whole thing made for a terrific package. No, you won't go home a better person for having seen this. And you won't carry the images with you or ponder great philosophies because of it. It's not a To Kill a Mockingbird of Of Mice and Men, but it is a wonderful escape from all you problems for a couple hours and you'll feel like you've been on the most exhilarating thrill ride you could find in the park! All thumbs up for this one!
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Very enjoyable
belleek7813 September 2004
My husband and I saw this movie last night, and were extremely pleased by it. The movie starts with a bang immediately and keeps going! We found it well written, well acted and well directed. It's suspenseful and quite thrilling. I thought the actor's characters were right on target - the self centered young man, the distraught and frantic mother, the tired cop waiting for a retirement he's not quite sure he wants, and the baddies - whooo boy! In this movie, the baddies are without any redeemable features - the kind that you yourself would like to beat the tar out of!! Speaking of beating the tar out of someone, wait until you get a dose of the lawyer - egads. The movie is fast paced with nary a dull moment. The action scenes were great, and the building of the tense moments was very well done. Drama, suspense and with a touch of comedy - what more are you looking for in a movie?
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Keeps you on your toes
stepenwolfgr5 May 2006
I happened to catch this movie during a free-preview weekend on Starz. I had never heard of it, so I did not know what to expect. For the whole duration of the movie, about 90 min., I was at the edge of my seat. The plot takes several unexpected turns and is packed with continuous action, while the characters are very believable. O.k., fine, it does not deal with deep moral issues, if you want a movie that will make you want to go out and change the world this is not it. But if you want an entertaining movie that will give you a big dose of adrenaline, will have you raise yourself from your seat, I strongly recommend it. By the way, I am not a big fun of horror teenage movies like Scream, I just don't find them believable, and find the characters shallow. The best part about this movie is that you actually feel sympathy for the victims, the plot is probable, and the action scenes do not require that the actors possess superhuman strength. At the end of the movie the only thing I could think of was "holy cow", a response I usually associate with a great roller coaster ride.
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An entertaining and intense movie from beginning to end
christian12320 January 2005
A kidnapped woman (Kim Basinger) frantically dials a random number on a broken telephone, reaching the cellular phone of a young man in a different state (Chris Evans) who begins a race against time to find and save her before the connection is lost or she is killed.

Cellular is a fast paced, exciting and entertaining movie. It is a simple film yet an interesting one. The plot isn't new or anything but the execution is pretty good. They manage to keep the audience glued to the screen and at the edge of their seats. Keep in mind though that the film is highly unrealistic. There are a few eye rolling moments and some of the scenes may be hard to buy. I didn't have any real problems with it but some other people may complain about it. The movie is also pretty predictable. It is easy to see where things are going and the inside man is also easy to figure out.

The acting is pretty good with the best being William H. Macy. He plays the cop role pretty well and he has a few funny lines. Chris Evans gives a decent performance and he is now forgiven for appearing in the Perfect Score. Kim Basinger gives an okay performance. Sometimes she was a little too weak while other times she was just average. Jessica Biel was in the movie for about 10 minutes so it's not really worth watching. Jason Statham gives a pretty convincing performance as the bad guy though sometimes he seemed a little bored. Noah Emmerich gives an awful performance as Jack. He was just reading his lines the entire time. One of the worst performances of 2004.

David R. Ellis does a good job at directing. He keeps the audience entertained and he never lets stupidity bring down the movie. If you do give the movie a shot, just ignore any plot holes. Cellular is a thriller/action movie and if you take it seriously then you will hate the movie. The film is advertised as a harmless thriller and it succeeds as one. In the end, Cellular is a "B" movie at heart and a pretty good one. It never takes itself too seriously and it never becomes dull. Rating 8/10
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Anthony Dunn28 June 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This has to be one of the worst movies ever put on film. Believe me, there are thousands upon thousands of awful movies being made, or have been made, and this is one of them. This film is totally unrealistic, for example, Kim Bassinger's character gets kidnapped and put into an attic of an old house that looks like it's on the demolition list, and there on the wall is a brand new phone just waiting to be used. Or how about finding the gun in the glove box of the security car, how convenient. Or finding a parking spot in front of LAX (the airport), did the writer ever in his life even go to LAX?!! I could go on and on, but I will use up the thousand words I get to write this. In a nutshell all the actors must have been payed well to star in this trash, cause I find it hard to believe that William H. Macy would do this for the art. If you see this film on the rack of our local videostore or online rental, save yourself and rent something else.
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A thriller worth watching for its exhilaratingly fast pace, situational humor, and Chris Evans' star-making performance.
Li-122 January 2005
Rating: *** out of ****

Gimmicky thriller premises are a dime a dozen. Fox's 24 essentially expounds on that idea every episode without any rhythm or consistency. The real trick is executing the idea with the right panache and skill to weave it all into a fun thriller. So is David R. Ellis' Cellular worthy of Phone Booth acclaim, or is it just another Nick of Time? You just might be surprised to see it's every bit as enjoyable as the former, with only occasional hints at the pure cheese of the latter.

Young beach bum Ryan (Chris Evans) is having just another typical day of sun and fun at the beach, but his girlfriend (Jessica Biel) sees his behavior as lazy and irresponsible. To try and patch things up, he promises to run a few errands for her, but on the way, he receives a call on his cell phone from a stranger named Jessica Martin (Kim Basinger), a woman who claims she's been kidnapped and is being held in the attic of an unfamiliar house. Her call to Ryan was completely random, but the catch is, she has to stay on the line or the signal may be lost for good.

Though initially dubious of her outrageous claims, Ryan quickly comes to believe her after he overhears one of the kidnappers on the phone. Deciding to help out in any possible way he can, Ryan tries to locate her family before the kidnappers do. Unfortunately, obstacles to keeping the phone signal going present themselves at every turn, and Ryan finds he must go through some extreme measures to keep Jessica on the line.

It's these obstacles that make up at least half the fun of watching Cellular. Whether it's a dying battery, "typical" close call encounters with the villains, car chases that require driving backwards or on the wrong side of the road, director Ellis keeps the pace lightning fast by presenting every plausible hindrance there is to keeping a cell phone signal alive. That might not be as immediately catchy a premise as keeping a bus above 50 mph, but it's hard to care when the gimmick is delivered with this much fresh skill and energy. Ellis also directed the enjoyable Final Destination 2, proving he has what it takes to deliver straight-faced thrillers in spite of their naturally ridiculous premises.

But as terrific a job as Ellis does, it's the cast that keeps the momentum going even when the story starts to sag. As the everyman caught in this horrifying situation, Chris Evans is wholly convincing and immensely appealing as Ryan, playing out an otherwise simple role for all its worth. Most of the movie rests on his shoulders, so it's to no small amount of praise when I say that we eagerly want to follow him through every move of his day-long adventure. Kim Basinger is surprisingly just as good as the kidnapped woman, proving that much like her physical features, her acting skills are improving with age. The other major standout is Jason Statham as the head kidnapper; he's obviously affecting an American accent that's not all that believable, but he brings an intensity to the role that makes him fiercely menacing.

The plot boasts the expected coincidences and contrivances that are needed to fuel the story, and most of these are easy enough to accept, but there are admittedly a few nagging problems. While I could reasonably believe that the kidnappers wouldn't tie up Jessica and could also accept that she knows just enough about phones to fix one up well enough to make one call, I found it less easy to swallow that the kidnappers wouldn't at least keep a guard posted right outside or inside her room. No biggie, though.

The more bothersome bits involve a few unlikely coincidences that allow a cop (played by William H. Macy, who delivers another one of his requisite subtly funny performances) to conveniently piece together a number of the clues. Even more troublesome is the climax, which has the unfortunate task of resolving every introduced plot strand, and while the results are still highly entertaining, it comes across a bit messy (though ironically finishing things up on a nice and tidy final note).

Still, the story makes a lot of right choices when a lesser movie would have simply veered off course for good. A plot twist involving the villains' identities and their motives is smart and surprising. The movie also satisfyingly chooses to reveal its surprise villain halfway through rather than saving it for a silly last-minute unveiling.

The film also boasts a good sense of humor, a lot of it coming from Evans, who handles the comic moments with natural ease (no real surprise, he was also very funny in Not Another Teen Movie). His best moment comes in one scene where he's in a private school searching for Jessica's kid, flabbergasted over his name (which is particularly funny) and how identical every student looks in the same brand of clothing. The laughs don't defuse the tension, though, and it's with this fun mixture of suspense and occasional comic ingenuity that makes this a highly recommended thriller.
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All lines are busy...
Merwyn Grote24 September 2004
I like a movie that takes an idea or a theme or just an amusing gimmick and then runs with it. There is something exhilarating about being able to exhaust the possibilities of an idea without beating the whole thing to death. A great example is GROUNDHOG DAY; just when you think the filmmakers have milked the idea for all it's worth, they take off on a totally new tangent and the film ends up getting better and better. It is a sign that the writer and/or the director are thrilled with the sheer joy of creative exploration. They aren't just playing by the numbers, but are eager to go beyond expectations. This is film-making as a challenging game.

CELLULAR, while not in the same league as GROUNDHOG DAY, is nonetheless a good example of this type of storytelling. This time the linchpin of the story is the cell phone. The filmmakers seem to have made a list of everything that makes cell phones great (emergency use, portability, digital photography, etc.) as well as what makes them a nuisance (ringing at inappropriate times, crossed connections, lost signals, dying batteries, etc.) and incorporated both lists into a story. The trick isn't just to gerryrig the list into a story, but to do so in a coherent and plausible fashion. CELLULAR is a crackerjack piece of storytelling. The storyline is unlikely, but not impossible and it all unfolds at a steady clip that makes any loophole or implausibility fly by so fast that the viewer has little time to raise a question.

Beyond the gimmickry of the storytelling, the film also benefits from being a solid, efficient, no-nonsense piece of film-making. Directed by actor-turned-stuntman-turned-director David R. Ellis, this is an action-packed thriller that knows the value of blending action with humor and character. Without loosing its manic pace, the film nevertheless takes time for puckish humor and character development. As the damsel in distress, the Hitchcockian innocent man sucked into a web of intrigue and the retiring cop facing his one last case, the actors could have been saddled with one-note, cliché characters. But Kim Basinger, Chris Evans and William H. Macy are given ample room to not only act, but to create characters who are, more importantly, smart. They aren't at the mercy of the complicated plot, they are what moves it along.

My one genuine reservation with CELLULAR is that it is destined to become dated so very fast. Technology, the film's driving force, will quickly be its undoing. It brings to mind old episodes of the "Columbo" TV series, where Peter Falk's Lt. Columbo is seen to be in awe of computers and answering machines and video cameras and VCRs, and he has to go into great detail explaining how such gadgets and gizmos work and how they can be used as part of a murder plot. The cutting edge technology of the time now seems so elementary that Columbo's naivete seems rather silly. Yet, the Columbo stories still hold up thanks to clever storytelling and strong characters played by good actors. And from that perspective, CELLULAR just might hold up to be a minor classic, albeit as a period piece.
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Nokia and Porsche commercial
wauwau-116 March 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Unbelievable plots in the whole: 1. Hero goes swimming but that does not affect phone at all, when did Nokia start to make water proof phones 2. Why does he not steel chargerer, why does he need to make an armed robbery? 3. Phonelines do not mixed in such a way with current technology 4. Driving against opposite traffic in highway without collision is virtually impossible 5. Airport does not make more checks for LA Police after finding the gun 6. With current technology cops could locate an open cellular phone within 10 yards accuracy but this is not used anywhere during the process 7. Dropping 5 floors straight down a tube would hurt even when splashin water but here that is not an issue 8. Since when in US you stopped watching IDs in airport security?

I could go on forever, the writers are complete idiots....

In addition this was such a clear Nokia and Porshce commercial that it just goes beyond a good taste. - Cayenne, which break storage room and Boxter that flies around. Neither of the cars get truly damaged. - Nokia functionality explained and shown, this movie could be used as a manual for the phone itself?

Btw - In US phones do not seem to work at tunnel? Well, in Europe they do
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"Cellular" Division
Placemat19 January 2005
"Cellular" has the setup for a solid straight-ahead thriller: A kidnap victim who does not know where she is being held phones a total stranger who must then stay connected on his cell phone to find her before she is killed. Joel Schumacher scored earlier with a similarly phone-themed Larry Cohen story, "Phone Booth." As executed by tone-deaf director David R. Ellis, however, "Cellular" becomes an unintentionally hilarious cousin to Brian de Palma's "Raising Cain" and "Snake Eyes."

Ellis seems to have unwittingly spliced together two different films with mismatched tones: Kim Basinger as the kidnapee and Jason Statham as the kidnapper occupy the deadly-serious, straight-to-video thriller half, while Chris Evans as the rescuer and William H. Macy as a police officer seem to be in a "Saturday Night Live"-alum action comedy. Nowhere else is the disjointedness in tone more apparent than when Basinger and Evans's performances are placed side-by-side during their conversations: The scenes keep cutting between an overwrought Basinger wringing out every drop of melodrama, while a blissfully inept Evans seems to be channeling a cross between Chris Kattan/Jimmy Fallon and Ben Affleck/Keanu Reeves.

Meanwhile, Ellis pulls out tricks intended to generate thrills and surprises. He throws in out-of-nowhere "shocks," a la "Final Destination"; he throws in flashbacks; he throws in a gun-blazing Macy in Jerry Bruckheimer action-hero slo-mo; and yet, Ellis has no handle on staging any of them competently. Case in point: "Cellular" is the proud owner of one of the most ineptly scored chase sequences ever, as if Ellis simply heard a snippet of the song's lyrics ("...where you gonna run to?") literally and paid no attention to the inappropriateness of the accompanying music (which just bop, bop, bops along). (The song is even reprised during the closing credits, which itself is misbegotten in conception.)

And yet, for all of its failures as art, "Cellular" is always entertaining for those very same faults.
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one of the worst films I've seen
paulsandberg24 December 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I had high hopes for this film, as it seems every critic was enamored with it. Boy, I sure can't for the life of me see why. Implausible from the get go, laughingly stilted dialog, you name it, this film has it. Why in the heck would Wm. Macy and Kim Bassinger submit to this trash? And yet some critics compare it favorably to Phone Booth - what are you guys smoking?

Just an example of the terrible writing - The kidnappers steal Kim's Porsche Cayanne and then all she can say to her cell buddy when attempting to thwart the kidnapping of her son is that her car is a "black SUV". Come on!!! She HAS to know that it's a Porsche for Chrissakes - not to mention that giving the license number may have helped. DUH!

And then when there's nobody home on the fourth floor of the PD - yeah, sure.

I finally had had enough when the slacker dude takes off after the Porsche in the tiny Security car - uh huh, like he could keep up with the Porsche or that the Security Car wouldn't look conspicuous and the kidnappers, realizing that they were being followed, would simply put pedal to the metal and say "see ya" - a premise that seems beyond the reasoning of our hero.

I'm all for action films, but you have to at least have some basis in reality, and this film truly lacks that basis. Maybe someone thought the whole idea was clever - 1001 ways to make use of a cell phone, but when there is absolutely no reality quotient.... well it just makes a bad film.

Anyone else wonder (1) how a school teacher would be home in the middle of the day (and able to then pick up her son after school) (2) how a school teacher who, by her own admission, doesn't have a lot of money, lives in a fancy house, has a maid, drives a 70,000 dollar car, and has her son enrolled in a private school. Totally laughable.
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You haven't been kidnapped today, have you?
Andy (film-critic)30 March 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Do you know what I liked about this story? I loved the imagination that was created when the film ended. If you don't know what I am talking about, let me explain. I walked away from this film interested in seeing where Ryan and Basinger's relationship was going to go. After a traumatic incident like the one they experienced together, you can't help but wonder if possibly they will have this darker and haunting relationship built off that trauma after the credits finish rolling. Just a thought that I had. There has to be some psychological issues going on between them (though with the acting that both possessed, I don't think you could tell), and I think that would make for a better story than what was presented here. Nonetheless, that is what I like to call "wishful thinking" and another genuine story that will never be created. So, faced with the challenge … wait … my cell phone is ringing … OK, I'm back … faced with the challenge of writing this review, I must try to be as cliché as possible (it would only be respectful).

This action packed cellular ride showcased the poor acting ability of Kim Basinger and the honest proof that Oscar's are sometimes just handed out to anyone. Couldn't they have afforded Marisa Tomei? Either way, from the unbelievable turn as a science teacher to also a doctor, there was nothing real about her performance. Even when she was frightened, she wasn't actually frightened, but instead "acting" frightened. There was no depth or range to her character. I didn't care if she survived or died throughout this entire story. There was nothing that attached me to her, other than the fact that she was like a feminine MacGyver of sorts. Then, if Basinger's acting wasn't poor enough, you also had to deal with the ability of Chris Evans to work with a cell phone. I mean, please, if you were given a script and your co-actor was a piece of machinery, you really have to start thinking about which direction you want your career to go. Evans only has about three faces of surprise and excitement, and he used them all within the first three minutes of the film. The rest of the time we are left with nothing more than recycled emotions as he attempts to upstage his cell phone. It was pathetic. With these two actors anchoring the film down on both ends, it made me happy to have a cell phone in this picture. Without it, I don't think there would have been any value to this. Could you image this film with a rotary phone? HA. That would have made a much better film than what was presented here.

I would like to take a moment to compliment the cell phone on its ability in this film. I don't know about you, but I hope that it was paid better than the actors that were involved. I hope it had its own trailer, its own entourage, and everything it desired. Was there an audition for this cell phone? I think I would have enjoyed seeing the audition tapes as a supplemental feature to this DVD. When Oscars come around again this year, I would not be surprised to see the cell phone perhaps be nominated? Is that too much to ask? I mean, look at the world today. Cell phone is at the peak of its game. Everyone has one, and everyone is talking to one. It is the biggest star this world has ever seen, and finally it has the ability to showcase its talent in this film. I loved everything this cell phone did in this movie, especially the ending. While you may think that it was a climactic moment between Statham and Macy, I thought that I was biting my fingers over the cell phone more than the human element. When it rang at the end, I nearly jumped. What other actor could bring that much emotion to the screen … none … other than this multi-talented cell phone. I wouldn't be surprised it the next picture that it chose to do would be perhaps a period piece film. You know, stretch its talent. Don't be surprised if you see more from this amazing actor as the years progress. I think it is likely to take the place of the "Hall of Fame" actor, the cigarette. Just watch and see!

Overall, outside of the cell phone, this was a poor film. This film is labeled as an "action" film, but for some reason laughter bellowed from me more than actual excitement. Cellular was riddled with implausible events coupled with clichéd moments that screamed Hollywood control. While it did showcase some great actors who have developed a fine body of work, this film proves that even the mighty can fall. Statham needs to stop working for money and Macy was just getting paid. Basinger needs to remarry Baldwin and live off his money for awhile. With bad acting and just this hysterical dilemma, the mixed bag of messages seemed to just get further and further away from reality. It became a comedy instead of an action film. From the beginning to the end, there was nothing redeeming about this picture (outside of the acting from the cell phone). I have trouble seeing what people loved about this film. Honestly, if this were to happen to you, would you steal cars, shoot people, and cause explosions? Nope, I think the general public would just hang up. Test this theory out when you have the time.

Grade: two bars out of five
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Insult to an average intelligence
casch010124 January 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Before buying my ticket, I first got into IMDb.com and read (as always) Ebert's and Berardinelli's reviews first. Then, lots of the others. About everyone said this movie was good and the liked it. The idea is good, but..come on!, the movie is preposterous. Near the end, just the two flying whirls in the air by William Macy shooting are enough to get you out of the theater!. A boy crying out loud "...that kid is being kidnapped..." and everyone goes after him and not the kidnappers in their car!. A biology teacher (Bassinger) who handles phone cables left after the phone was beaten up to crack by the bad guy(how about taking it *out* the room, you moron!) better than expert phone service technicians!. Everyone steals a car and other stuff in front of people and policemen and no one, no one does a single thing!. No one cares about plates in this movie, they are not being jotted down, nor searched at computers and databases, nothing. Main actor Chris Evans looks as a Ricky Nelson just arrived in 2004 with his time machine. In short, besides entertaining a little bit, this movie was an overall insult to my intelligence and probably to those of many others, too.
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Straightforward good cop, bad cop movie plot supporting the central star of a cellular phone
Ruby Liang (ruby_fff)13 September 2004
Director David Ellis' "Cellular" 2004, is rather entertaining in spite of the predictable storyline. Chris Morgan's debut screenplay is based on a story by Larry Cohen, who wrote "Phone Booth" 2002 (directed by Joel Schumacher with the literally outstanding performance by Colin Farrell).

Perhaps I went to see the movie without much expectation, hence being able to enjoy it fine as it is. If you expect substance, this movie is not it -- director Michael Mann's recent film "Collateral" 2004, with Tom Cruise, Jaimie Foxx and Jada Pinkett Smith, did optimize the cellular phone as part of a substantial plot progression. To be more esoteric, try the Iranian film by w-d Abbas Kiarostami (of "A Taste of Cherry" fame), "The Wind Will Carry Us" 2000, which also featured the cellular phone in a down to earth way. Also brings to mind is the Danish film by Dogma w-d Thomas Vintenberg "The Celebration" aka Festen 1998 (an emotional powerhouse surrounding the reunion of a dysfunctional family), and the PBS TV series "Reckless" 1997-98 with the irresistible ménage a trois of Robson Green, Francesca Annis and Michael Kitchen, the cellular phone was well featured as a plot 'crutch' in both.

It's a timely reflection, or reminder, of how cellular technology is consumingly inhabiting our lives, and here in this breeze of a movie, we have a life saver adventure -- a day in the life of Ryan (Chris Evans), to the rescue of a civilian family from the claws of relentless bad cops (well, nothing so complicated or devastatingly psycho-play as "Training Day," of course). This is a lightweight fare. Just enjoy it as it is. Kim Basinger and William H. Macy didn't have to exert much acting chops per se. Evans, and the video cellphones (yes, not just one, there's two needed to complete the plot turns), sure carried the movie, alright. One would forgive or welcome the convenient plot points that Basinger happens to be a teacher of science/biology handy with wires (harkens the beginning credit of production company name -- "Electric Entertainment," hm), and Macy's soon to retire good cop happens to follow his curiosity instinct, and thank goodness Evan's character turned out to be not so goofy but smarter and thinking by the minute.

It's relaxing entertainment, with no need of foul language involved -- straightforward ride, with adequate supporting roles including Jason Statham ("The Transporter" 2002 and "The Italian Job" 2003), and a seemingly unsuspecting role as the cop boss by Noah Emmerich (last seen in "Beyond Borders" 2003 opposite Clive Owen and Angelina Jolie).
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Don't waste your time
umonra5 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Very predictable and lacking.

At only 89 minutes it could reasonably have been summed up into a 1 hour network cop show.

The shtick with Basinger only being able to call "Ryan" is interesting for about the length of time it takes for her to convince him she really has been kidnapped.

Macy's "good cop" character is at least worth watching for the couple of scenes he gets to throw some humor into the mix. In the end though, Macy's character ends up in the show down you knew he would wind up in the first time you saw him on screen: coming to the realization that his buddy on the police force is actually a bad cop.
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I couldn't have written a worse screenplay if I tried
coolhand_gb23 September 2004
I saw the movie Cellular last night because the people I was with refused to go to the independent movie theater in my town and see Silver City. What a mistake and a waste of time. This movie starts of with Kim Basinger sending her kid of to school. We have no character development we are never introduced to a setting and the plot is just trash. As soon as Basinger goes home she gets kidnapped. She then uses a broken phone to call a random number, she reaches a young man and gets him to do all these absurd things for her in the pretense that she has been kidnapped. This is a waste of time for everyone and the writing, dialogue, and action are horrible.
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elemental_gear15 September 2004
Wow, this movie was a load of carp. The storyline was that of something cut out of a cereal box. The possibility of someone knowing how to configure a broken phone board to get in contact with the outside world, is what 1 in a million. The actual chance that someone would listen to a women that calls your number and starts babbling on about a kidnapping is astronomically, insignificantly small. The lawyer of the film just brushed off Jessica, the mother of the film, and said, "one, shut up" and "two, get off my phone". The character that was chosen to answer the phone had to be the most helpless, low self-esteem, sorrowful person that has, in this case, been dumped by an amazingly good looking chick. Plus, the idea that a guy with such simpleton-like obedience could beat highly trained cops that do this for a living is pretty much ridiculous. I'm a movie buff and watch a lot of movies, I never comment on them due to the fact that I'm to lazy to do so. But, in this case, this movie was so ridiculous that I couldn't let it sway.

What is the movie industry coming to, first a movie about a guy and a phone, and soon a movie about some people stranded in the desert rebuilding a plane. Common, I could watch "Purple Rain" and get ten times more enjoyment from it.
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nobbytatoes25 June 2006
Warning: Spoilers
On unknown reasons, Jessica is kidnapped by a band of men lead by Ethan. Locking her up in the attic of an isolated house and smashing the phone, Jessica is left helpless. Surprisingly when Jessica hears a dial tone from the smashed phone, she fruitlessly tries to salvage it and phone anyone. Managing to connect, she ends up calling Ryan's cell phone. Figuring for a prank, Ryan doesn't believe Jessica. When he hears her being attack over the line, desperately tries to find her and what the men are after.

What looks like a average B grade action film, turns out nothing but terrible trash. With a script severely under developed, sounding like it was written by a ten year old, your cutting yourself short. No characters are developed, they're all one dimensional and transparent. Right from the get go, the dialog screeches like finger nails on a black board, with one hammy conversation between Jessica and son. The jokes of Ryan hypocritically yelling at people for driving and talking on their phones, or driving a security car with 'safety First' while barreling through a construction site are nauseating.

So many films run off disbelief, but everything in Cellular is just unbelievable. Each situation just has no credibility. Ryan's feeble attempts to keep the line connection to Jessica, the chase's from the kidnappers, the car chase through apposing traffic; which is lifted straight out of Ronin, lack so much tension and suspension; not being helped by one atrocious music score.

With bland and flavourless action, the acting is stiffer than rigor mortis, with no sign of a pulse anywhere. Kim Basinger is woeful with her fragile, distressed damsel, it's depressing after she gave such a great performance in The Door in the Floor. Chris Evans is his usual cocky self. William H. Macy is sorely underused; wasting such talent. Jason Statham never evokes menace as Ethan; relying to much on his deep husky voice for fear.

The enter film is a joke; but your not laughing.
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wake me when it's over
Aragorn-723 September 2004
I have read some of the other comments and I can't believe anyone really liked this movie. Maybe it's a sign of the times where we expect so little that if there is a few moments of fun we give it a thumbs up. Not me.

There were maybe 30 people in the theatre and you would have thought this was a comedy... everyone laughed at how poor the acting was (Basinger especially), how stupid the people were, how hokey the lines were and how the tension was non-existent. This would play very well as a 1 hour Charlie's Angel's episode from the 70's. Those can be entertaining but you don't want to spend 10 bucks and two hours to watch one.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a little humor in a suspense thriller... it breaks the tension and brings you back to reality, but they forgot the suspense and thrill. I don't even know where this movie would place on a video shelf... Comedy is the closest I can match up. This is NOT edge of your seat stuff, and the more I think about it the director should take most of the blame... he should have been fired for wasting me 2 hours.

Way too silly and corny..... C-
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Really, really bad
mmsbk24 April 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Didn't expect much, an action thriller - maybe with some good acting - after all it has Jason Statham, Willam H Macy and Kim Basinger. We continued to watch it BECAUSE it was so bad, you know one of those movies where you believe it must be going to get better . It didn't. From the first moments of Kim Basinger , at least 15 maybe 20 years too old for the role and looking worse than I have ever seen her , shiny faced, and stringy and strained - to the last with Millam H Macy in the fakest fake blood outside a high school play.

The plot (everybody else has given that so I won't bore on) had potential, and we were prepared to suspend disbelief a bit, but really, so much bad acting and utter nonsense with people hearing music from broken phones hidden under coats across a 20 foot attic space attic , well, please.............

One of those where, when other people's reviews praise it, you cannot believe you watched the same movie
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Unbelievably weak script
zerrega3 April 2010
This movie proves that Hollywood has too much money and too many incompetent scriptwriters, producers and other people who make such awful bombs.

The whole plot of this movie could be ended from the very first minutes at any time by just one phone call to the police. But it seems too complex to dimwits who spend an hour and half of screen time acting like imbeciles and running around with guns, stealing cars and putting the lives of hundreds if not thousands people around in mortal danger. Cops, store clerks, lawyers etc. are just plain stupid. I just can't believe that anyone could write such weak script, that anyone can approve it and make a movie.
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Best time I've had in a long time
socrates9913 September 2004
This movie whisked me away and entertained me so thoroughly I barely knew what had happened. Look, I've heard say there are plot holes you could drive a truck through, and I do get motivated by tight and clever screenplays, but this movie did something very few movies have ever made me do: it made me happily overlook whatever minor flaws it has in favor of just enjoying it as a mutifaceted, beautifully executed, almost one-of-a-kind movie-going experience. My wife and I both alternately laughed and cried, and we both agreed it was probably the best (fun) movie we've seen in a very long time. Bravo all concerned!

As if to prove my point, this morning I heard a review by some critic writing for Newsday (out of New York). The guy was so pathetically ENVIOUS of this so-not-New York movie that I had to laugh out loud in sheer delight.
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Hang Up On It.
Python Hyena6 October 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Cellular (2004): Dir: David R. Ellis / Cast: Chris Evans, Kim Basinger, William H. Macy, Jason Statham, Eric Christian Olsen: Contrived piece of crap about distance. Rushed premise has Kim Basinger abducted and locked in an attic where the phone is shattered. She manages to patch things together enough to send a random call out, which is received by Chris Evans. Now he must reach her son before the kidnappers do. Filled with any possible annoying tactic to slow him down until it reaches a mindless climax. Director David R. Ellis does his best with the flimsy material but it has all the life of an episode of T.J. Hooker. Listening to a seminar on how to put batteries into things is more entertaining than this contrived piece of junk. Evans does his best with the annoying inconveniences that his role requires to go through. Basinger does little more than scream into the phone. If that is the case, then I hope her agent is on the other end. William H. Macy is another decent actor given the standard police detective role where everything depends on him avoiding idiotic plot contrivances. Jason Statham basically looks intimidating, but then again, he probably realizes that this garbage won't be up for any awards thus lessening his chances for better roles. There is little if anything original in this formula driven crap so viewers are advised to disconnect. Score: 2 / 10
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Absurd ridiculous plot
Hollywoodshack24 August 2014
Warning: Spoilers
The kidnap hostage always has a cell phone to call someone with. Why did the kidnappers let her keep it? The cell phone can call other people in other places as well as the two people talking all at the same time. Conveniently the bad guys answer the phone instead of murdering their hostage. The hero drives his car backwards full speed through a tunnel jammed with traffic without hitting anyone. The action is entertaining but the fights are stretched out too long just like the other scenes in the movie. Even the corny line of Basinger after she's been rescued, "how can I ever repay you?" sounded more like a line from a MAD magazine movie satire than any film someone would make. Stuntwork goes overtime to impress people and cover the absurdity of it all.
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Leave a message!
Shawn Watson30 September 2006
Warning: Spoilers
"Isn't it funny? A phone rings and it could be anybody. But a ringing phone must be answered." Those words were Kiefer Sutherland's closing lines in Phone Booth and they could easily be the last words in Cellular, too. It's interesting that the script comes from the writer of Phone Booth (that would be Larry Cohen, the brains behind Maniac Cop and The Stuff), a movie about a man trapped in one tiny place on the phone to a complete stranger and yet Cellular is about a man trapped on the phone to a complete stranger who is free to go anywhere he wants.

Only Cellular is a more wholesome and complete film than Phone Booth. It doesn't make any attempt at satire, or make fun of the media, but does have terrific energy and intelligence. No, Cellular is NOT a no-brainer.

Ryan, played by Chris Evans (no, not the ginger, speccy nerd from British TV), is a punk kid who never takes anything seriously and is far too laid back to keep his girlfriend happy. But his life crosses paths with a woman in trouble. Will he finally grow up when her fate becomes his responsibility? Kim Basinger (aging more gracefully than I previously assumed) is that woman. She's being held in a spooky old attic by corrupt cop Jason Statham and painstakingly "repairs" a broken phone. She's about to reach out to somebody, anybody. The only number she manages to hook up to is Ryan's.

He immediately takes the problem to the fuzz. The only cop who will listen is Mooney (William H Macy), but he's too fed up and dismissive to take much notice. Not at first, anyway. As Ryan races around the city, overcoming difficult and dangerous obstacles, Mooney puts it all together and slowly realises things ain't what they seem.

I had only ever seen Evans in the rather dull Perfect Score before this movie, but he made for a totally cool hero that everyone can relate to. Most actors his age irritate the hell out of me. I can only imagine how bad this film would have been with Seann William Scott, or Freddie Prinze Jr., for example.

Basinger does everything she can with her damsel in distress. It's usually quite insulting to an actress's intelligence to reduce her to such a cliché, though she manages to bring integrity and desperation to the role more convincingly than most actresses her age.

And of course we all love and adore Jason Statham. He may be a skinhead with a funny sounding voice, but be it hero or villain he's dead cool and makes Vin 'Donald Duck' Diesel look like a right poof.

Director David Ellis races through the far-fetched plot without looking back and keeps everything fast-paced and exciting right up to the last minute. He's the man who made a good sequel out of a bad original (that would be Final Destination) and with many other directors the ludicrousness of the plot would be all too apparent. Here, we don't get a single breath to take it all in.

The show-stealing is split two ways. Macy is great as the Ned Flanders-type cop, but Rick Hoffmann is hilarious as an obnoxious lawyer who stands in Ryan's way and gets his comeuppance not once, not twice, but thrice.

There's not been a kidnapping thriller as gripping as this since Kurt Russell lost his wife in Breakdown. Cellular is definitely the right number.

Oh, and in case it was bugging you, that movie the bad guys are watching is Final Destination 2
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