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When a Stranger Calls
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When a Stranger Calls More at IMDbPro »

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

When A Stranger Calls...Hang Up on this One 0*

1/10
Author: edwagreen from United States
29 July 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Jill Johnson, a teenager, got grounded by her parents for going over the number of minutes on her cell phone. No parties or the use of the car for a month. This doesn't include a baby-sitting job that her father drives her to. Believe me, she would come to wish he had grounded her for that as well. The problem is that the viewers should have been grounded as well.

The prank phone calls start coming and the housekeeper disappears. Her rival for her boyfriend pays a surprise visit and pays with her life.

No one knows what's going on and that includes the local police department. Help should have been sent immediately-just to ride around and check out the place. I bet the police there wouldn't even believe in stop and frisk.

The viewers are in store for an absolute night of terror. Just too bad it even means nothing. This experience had some affect on Jill and those who saw this mess.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A lot of room for improvement?

4/10
Author: sophie_meager from United Kingdom
12 October 2006

I had preconceptions that this film would be poor, and i was right. the lighting and camera work was very well done however, and i would say that the music played most of the role in the film of making the audience scared. generally it did serve the purpose and it was captivating at points. despite this, the characters and their roles were generally weak and underdeveloped. there was no chance to sympathise with the leading character as you didn't really get to know her, and other characters who could have played more integral roles didn't, leaving the film to be more of a relationship with a fairly pretty girl and a telephone. a lot of the story was unrealistic and confusing at times, mostly why would you have a babysitting job miles away from where you live in the middle of a forest, and how did the 'stranger' know that she'd be babysitting.. and so on. overall i would give it a 4/10 as i think it served the purpose of being a suspenseful thriller, but there was a lot of room for improvement.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Very underrated! It's very scary! Brings back memories!

10/10
Author: EricVierthaler92 from United States
8 July 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie brings back a lot of memories. I remember me and two friends saw this at the theater and it was the best experience I ever had at a movie. People were screaming. These teenage girls where screaming. It was fun. That's why horror movies are the best. This is one of the scariest movies I have ever seen, next to 'Halloween' and 'Halloween 2'. My face completely turned white. One of the best horror movies ever made. The ending was insane. You actually yell at the screen telling the main character not to do something. You never expect the scares. This movie deserves better ratings! Why so much hate? Is it because it's a remake? I have never even heard of the original movie until this came out, that's what remakes do. What else can I say? Great suspense, great memories from this, Camilla Bell was hot in this movie, everything about this movie is perfect you wouldn't wanna change anything about it. I never babysat after I saw this. If you are with your boyfriend/girlfriend and you wanna watch a scary movie I highly recommend this! I highly recommend it! Give it a shot! Don't be shy! If your up for a good scare give this movie a try!

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

80 minutes of my life.. I will never get back...

Author: irishhippy171 from United States
3 June 2007

Are you all absolutely insane.

How can ANYONE EVER say that When a Stranger Calls is in any way a good movie.

It is probably the worst movie I have ever seen, no lie.

Actress was terrible.

There was hardly any speech. Only slight gasps and crys of fear as the cat pops out behind the corner.

Hears a brilliant idea. DON'T PICK UP THE PHONE! You'd think after repeatedly getting creepy phone calls you wouldn't continue picking up the phone my god! And oh of course the eerie music adds to the movie. NO! It makes it completely dull because every time something slightly scary DOES in fact happen, the watcher has been expecting it for minutes. Plus it is never the killer. Only the cat.

I have no clue how the writers managed to stretch this film into 80 minutes long, BUT THEY DID IT.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

When A Stranger Calls (2006):The Doc's Review

7/10
Author: walken_on_sunshine
29 November 2006

First and foremost i must say it is absolutely unfair to judge a remake on originality considering it is in fact a REMAKE however many overly critical critics don't take that into consideration well The Doc does.When A Stranger Calls succeeds as a horror film for one major reason...atmosphere.No it is not packed with jump scares or an everyday gore fest,it is psychological horror at it's finest.People will claim that last statement is absurd but allow me to explain how When A Stranger Calls is great psychological horror.Like i said this movie is all about atmosphere the eerie music,the dark visuals,the big house,the misty windows it really makes you feel uneasy and creeped out.The way the film is written is very clichéd and very tame for horror but the way it is acted out and portrayed on screen is magnificent.This is one of those horror films where you imagine yourself in the situation that the victim is in.Almost everyone has babysat at one point or another or been home alone so this is a very realistic situation.Also contributing to the realism is the fact that what's pursuing this victim isn't a ghost,goblin,or ghoul but another human being.A sixteen year old girl is alone in an enormous house being called every fifteen minutes by a perverted killer the very idea is disturbing.A remake's purpose is to take an old story and retell it in a way that appeals to a new generation or audience.When A Stranger Calls successfully does that and it also succeeds due to it's psychological way of making you feel like this could all happened to you.Overall this was a pleasant surprise.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Blood Tingling, Hair Raising, Heart Stirring, Stunningly Sensational Thriller of the Year.

10/10
Author: Ladyalaska-1 from United States
6 June 2006

I thought this movie was absolutely amazing. It is extremely underrated and its previews don't do justice. I thought it was just another wanna be trying too hard to be-scary movie. I'm a huge fan of scary movies and I'm tired of the same old same old. This movie is practical and unbelievably realistic in all its dimensions, which enables it to really grab your attention and get under your skin. I was huddled up in a ball hiding behind a blanket the entire time practically holding my breath. I've never seen a movie with as much suspense built up as this one. From the actress chosen to the setting to the plot, It was simply mind blowing how well this movie was put together. Simply put, it was a masterpiece. I never want to be sitting alone in a room or house or anywhere ever again. Turn the lights off, turn up the volume, relax and allow yourself to be scared and you too will agree how mind blowing scary this movie actually is.

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8 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

Wasc

10/10
Author: ktr8rmv814 from United States
17 May 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I bought the DVD yesterday and watched it. I thought the movie was pretty average when a saw it early 2006. I bought it and watched it. I really liked it much more. Knowing and understanding what this movie wanted to convey, I got much more out of it. I don't like the fact that this movie was made out and thought of to be a horror movie when it first came out. It's a psychological thriller. THRILLER. So don't expect the gore blood n' guts stuff. It isn't a slasher. Sure, it was Pg-13 and limited but it was still good. There were some deaths and a little bit of blood here and there. A lot of people thought it was stupid because they didn't find out who the killer was. Hence the name it got...when a stranger calls. What the movie was trying to convey was imagination and mind tricks. When we're alone or scared, we imagine things that scare the hell out of us sometimes. Our mind can be the worst at times. This movie is so real and that's what I like. I didn't even know who Camilla was until this movie and she does a good job. She conveys the average teenager very, VERY well. Her expressions were good as well, and heightened the tension in the movie. I thought it was cool what the director/writers did. They expanded the first 20 minutes of the original and made it into a feature film. The film was well shot and the lighting was wonderful. The movie also does something different. The HOUSE is an actual CHARACTER. It's beautiful and safe looking during the day, but at night it's hostile, uninviting, causing uncertainty and tension, not knowing what was coming. The ending could've been better and lasted longer, like maybe him coming after her again after he escapes, but nonetheless I liked the ending, kind of like CARRIE style. Hell, I would be traumatized too!! This was a pretty good movie, just watch it with an open mind and know that it's a THRILLER, and NOT HORROR, even more so, its more like a PSYCHOLOGICAL thriller. It kind of reminded me of last years Red-eye which I enjoyed very much as well. Watch this movie loud, the score was great and it had a great impact in the movie. Hopefully this helped.

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9 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Nice House

2/10
Author: pfogertyca from United States
4 June 2007

That's pretty much all I can say about this flat and uninspired remake of the 1979 Carol Kane vehicle. Camilla Belle isn't much of an actress, and she brings no energy and vitality to the role of Jill Johnson, the babysitter harassed by an anonymous phone caller.

But if you're looking for some great home architecture and interior design ideas, this movie provides more inspiration than anything you'll see on TLC or HGTV. Jill spends nearly 90 minutes wandering through the house of the rich doctor and wife for whom she's providing her sitting services, searching for the origins of strange sounds and things that keep going "bump" in the night. As she lurks around corners and peers down hallways, we get to see a beautiful master bathroom with his and hers sinks that look like Roman tubs, a huge kitchen with incredible back lit glass shelving, and the piece de resistance, a self-contained aviary and coy pond that feature a self-watering system.

Because the movie isn't compelling enough to draw us into Jill's fear, we're distracted by the grandeur of the house, which isn't something you should be doing when you're watching a thriller. Even as Jill is pursued by the faceless maniac, we cringe because she's breaking valuables and messing up the coy pond, not because she's about to get murdered.

The movie plods along as predictably as most teen slasher movies, and the ending is anything but original. By the time it was over, I just wanted to find out where the heck that house was and if it was real. Never mind Jill and the kids she was babysitting.

2 stars - both for the house.

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20 out of 38 people found the following review useful:

When I pay to see a bad movie.

1/10
Author: lordsaves777 from Puerto Rico
25 February 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

When I pay to see a bad movie....I get really angry and definitely more scary than this movie.

Jill Johnson (Camilla Belle) must work as a babysitter to pay her phone bills.When she gets to the home,in a hidden place in the mountains,she starts receiving calls of some stranger.Well that's it,as simple as that,don't expect any twist in the drama,don't expect the good guy turn into the bad guy,don't expect anything special but some scared girl receiving calls,entering rooms and getting scared by cats jumping from hidden places,clothes and some shadows.Director Simon West is always trying to keep the suspense during the whole movie by playing suspense music in the background.We can even hear this music in the background when nothing terrifying is happening,just Jill and her father talking about the phone bills NOTHING ELSE.This is obviously a bad intent to keep the viewer interested and expecting something when the movie never really gets scary.Then Jill gets in every room of the house while she receives calls from the stranger,and just when we think things are gonna get interesting...is just a cat jumping from a hidden place,they have you waiting the ENTIRE movie for something really scary to happen that when it happens it has lost its impact completely.When the bad guy appears,maybe to keep the bad suspense,his face is covered by the shadows and you cant see his face until the end,just another intent to hide Simon's unexciting imagination and creativity.The plot of the movie is also not believable,how a sick sexual predator could get into a home with security alarms and run through the house without being spotted???,and why he wants Jill when he can get anyone else?,does he knows her? from where?,how did he know she was going to be the babysitter in that house? judging by the location of the house is not believable. No Simon,I am not going to turn my brain off,and one more thing...THIS SUCKS!.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Stupid and predictable.

3/10
Author: Teemu Lähde (teemu.lahde@outlook.com) from Lappeenranta, Finland
9 August 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I want some surprises to my horror or thriller film, and only one I could find in this one was that the Guy Who Calls is inside the house. Nothing else.

I saw almost the full spectrum of clichés: a cat jumping from the shadows scaring nobody but the main character, dropping car keys, a car that doesn't start at the first time, a classical scene where the murderer is slowly walking towards the backwards-crawling victim… Oh yes, and the Guy is a psychopath dressing in smart casual. Hip hip hooray for the character designer for doing almost no creative work whatsoever!

On the plus side, this film was just enough scary for someone who like me: a person that doesn't like too horrifying films. I just hoped that those 'scary points' would've been used more wisely than in some boo! scenes, perhaps atmosphere? Now its just too mild, and a very threatening soundtrack doesn't save it; actually it makes this very camp-like when its been putted on top of all the softness!

Acting is nothing shiny, nor nothing too stinky. Doesn't remember a memory mark, that is guaranteed.

Luckily this movie doesn't last long, so it didn't steal too much time for actually good pictures.

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