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|Index||279 reviews in total|
It's been a long time since I've seen Halle Berry in something. She's darn god great here, back in top form, as a police phone operator, who takes a emergency call that turns tragic for a young teenage girl victim. Inundated with guilt, she now becomes a tour guide operator of the place, where a similar emergency, involving the same killer, puts her back in action. Abigail Breslin, a really good actress is the latest victim, of this psycho, whose motives eventually become clear, which made him more human, in spite of his inexcusable and deplorable acts. I really liked that, about this film, as well as this actor's fantastic, and truly believable and frightening performance, from a Patrick Wilson or Michael De Good looking guy. Too, I also understood the choice of victims. This movie has been carefully structured, and thought out, and the script pays off, beautifully. The killer keeps his living victims in the trunk of his car, and I liked the situations that put killer and victim in peril, and it was just so much fun to see where this would take the story. This is a really enjoyable kick arse film, a slick thriller, and I'd almost feel bold, saying the movie is faultless, right to it's shattering climax, and grim outcome. It also introduces us to the life of emergency operators, and what it looks over over a potpourri of victim's calls, a lot of them frankly unsettling, and terrifyingly confronting. One of those real exciting movies of 2013, that doesn't come manifold a year, and one you glad you saw.
This is an action and thriller movie we would like to watch, containing
more action and thriller less emotional scenes.
There were just a single moment including some emotional acts when Halle Berry couldn't handle the case because of earlier disappointment in the job that effected her but later she overcame.
Apart from that scene, movie was much better than the most of the action movies around industry.
Also i have to admit that this movie is so realistic and we could face it in real life. There are neither characters who are fighting like immortals nor cases which are impossible to experience in real life.
People sometimes search for an action movie which is not driving us to think, but is easy to watch like a pie. If you are looking for something as i stated, this movie is the right choice for you.
From beginning till the end, you will not realize how the time passed.
I was surprised to see that THE CALL, an ultra-predictable Hollywood
kidnap thriller, was directed by Brad Anderson, the guy who once made
the likes of SESSION 9 and THE MACHINIST. Boy, what a fall from grace,
from making genuinely stylish and provoking cinema to being a mere
directed for hire on cookie cutter Hollywood flicks.
The problem with THE CALL is that it's all been done before and done better. The story is about your usual garden variety psychopath who likes breaking into houses, kidnapping teenage girls, torturing them, and then dumping the bodies. The extremely shrill and annoying Halle Berry plays an emergency call operator who becomes involved with the killer when she attempts to save a couple of girls who ring her for help.
The film becomes a battle of wits of sorts between Berry and the bad guy, with pretty teenage victim Abigail Breslin (HAUNTER) trapped in the middle. It sounds like it has potential but it's really a bore for the most part; I can't stand Berry's style of acting and she gets way too much screen time here. The villain character is never developed beyond the most basic and Breslin has little to do except strip down and run around in her bra. THE CALL gets particularly cheesy and ridiculous at the oh-so-typical climax, which is a thorough exercise in clichéd box-ticking.
This movie had the opportunity to be a good breathe taking thriller but
instead it left me very disappointed with cliché scenes and very
The start of the movie was good but it kept getting less interesting in every scene. The storyline didn't even make scene with so many unbelievable coincidences.
The worst thing about this movie was the ending. It has one of the worst endings I have ever seen, it's so obvious that the director was trying so hard to make Halle Berry's character be a tough and strong woman but he ended up making the movie a huge mess.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
First, I liked many of the actors in this film; especially Abigail
Breslin, Michael Imperioli, and Roma Maffia. I kind of like Halle
Berry, though she is not a favorite of mine. I have never been a fan of
Jose Zuniga, but he was OK here.
I loved the thrill of the storyline and the fact that Casey did indeed try to put up a fight. I disliked that Jordan said "we're Capricorns; we're fighters." Well, Capricorns are not the only people who fight. I personally do not believe in this astrology trash and I don't think 911 dispatchers should use that. What if the caller is like me? Or what if the caller is a devoutly religious person? Along with that, many people have indeed fought back in these situations, even children. Was Alan Donado a Capricorn, too? And what if you do believe in this ridiculous nonsense, what if you are not a Capricorn? Should the 911 operator say "Sorry, you're not a Capricorn, so you're not a fighter; so you're just gonna die. I'll go on to the next call since there is no hope for you!" Click!
The "Good Samaritan" role should have ended better for Alan Donado. Unfortunately, he made the mistake of confronting the abductor when he noticed something was wrong. Tailing him and calling in would have been a better choice, maybe with speaker phone so the abductor does not notice he was on a phone. (A Dr Phil episode featured a 911 call in which an elderly woman who had briefly tailed a suspected kidnapper and told the police where he was going until they were separated).
I hated intently the fact that the police officer boyfriend was prank-calling 911. If this were real, I would say take that badge and let him work as a garbageman. No one, not even cops, should be doing this. People who actually need help may not be getting through! This was the biggest factor on why I did not give this a 9 or even a 10.
Finally, near the beginning of the movie, Jordan is trying to talk a man out of suicide "Chris, put the gun down!" A gunshot is heard and the line goes dead. She moves on to the next caller. Any real 911 operator would have called back. Whether or not anyone answered, the operator would have continued with the situation until the police, medics, etc arrived and took over.
Altogether, it was very good. It would have better with more research, a better ending for Alan Denado, and cops that do not hold up 911 centers while we need help.
While Halle Berry dials in a reasonably respectable performance, the movie tends to drag on, and on, and on. While successful at times, the development of the suspense the events of the film attempts to create is occasionally overshadowed by explicit brutality and gore at otherwise critical points in the movie. There are few, if any, subplots to film, and although there is a minimal amount of effort to give the character of Jordan depth and dimension, her romance with Paul fails to do so in any meaningful way. The idea behind the film seems solid, as well as the story itself, but unlike a film like Oceans Eleven, for instance, there's just too much focus on the main story line with nothing to offset the constant tension.
The Call, despite being sort of predictable in plot, is a ragged, full throttle jolt of suspense and heightened storytelling. It's like a Tony Scott flick in its frenetic, jumpy aesthetic, and I was really glued to the screen for the majority of the story. Despite being implausible and downright over the top sometimes, it makes up for that with pure unbridled suspense and a love for thriller-filmmaking that it proudly wears on its sleeve. It's got a nostalgic 90's vibe as well, the kind of thriller you'd be delighted to discover for the fifth time on midnight cable back then. Halle Berry, sporting a hairdo worth it's own closeup, plays 911 operator Jordan, who witnesses the murder of a teenage girl she couldn't save over the phone, at the hands of a nasty serial murderer. This leaves her distraught, and unprepared for another call which comes in from his next victim (Abigail Breslin) who has already been kidnapped and is in the trunk of his car speeding down the highway. Thus begins a tense hunt to find her before it's too late, using all the resources available, plus a little ingenuity from Berry and Breslin. Berry shows us convincing shellshock that ramps into mania when things get rough, very nice work from her. Michael Eklund is fantastic as the killer, giving him the Gary Oldman intensity in a portrayal of feverish, sweaty evil and eccentric, leering ferocity. It's Breslin, however, who steals the show, with grounded, believable work that seems to have walked in from another film. Her terrified panic tugs at the tear ducts and brings you right into her situation. There's also fine supporting work from Morris Chestnut, Thomas Rosales Jr., Michael Imperioli and Roma Maffia as wel. It's not a perfect film; the third act is rife with genre clichés and inconsistencies, and the final resolution seems jarringly out of place. The film is at its best in the first half, an absolute corker of an extended chase scene thats edited, acted and shot with grit and style. Strong thriller material, despite its flaws.
A job that many are familiar with and told not to deal with unless a
true emergency arises, will call for the right employee to work in this
high-pressure atmosphere. Director Brad Anderson, particularly known
for his work in The Mechanist, introduces another intense thriller
film, The Call. This film excites viewers with it's plot, fast paced
filming that emits energy, and character development that leaves you
with a different perspective on how one succeeds as a 911 operator.
Jordan Turner (Halle Berry) is one of the far more experienced 911 operators who is noticeably confident in knowing how to deal with any call she receives. Until a young girl calls and Jordan isn't able to help her in the situation, leading to a devastating end that emotionally hinders her career and also portrays how challenging it can be. After contemplating on quitting her job but then switching to educating others for the job, Jordan finds herself in a situation similar to her last one. She attempts to turn a young girl, Casey (Abigail Breslin) trapped in the back of a car, into a fighter just as confident as Jordan is while Casey tries to deal with a very wise kidnapper. Overall, viewers take note of the strong personality and valiance that one needs in succeeding in this career.
Halle Berry's performance elicits a strong, calm personality that exemplifies her skilled advice with any situation and leads most viewers into feeling surprised as the film continues. When Berry is pulled into a kidnapping she feels responsible for, the intensity of emotional feelings that are present is stressed after what happens. As the plot progresses, Berry develops increasing confidence and boldness in the first obstacle back. The acting pulls viewers further into her journey in trying to limit future victims of the same kidnapper. As a viewer, you observe her character as she tries to limit her emotional attachments to the victim and watches as she fails to do so, forming an interesting plot.
As scenes flash back and forth from the back of a moving car to the 911 call center, the cinematography demonstrates a true grasp of the entertainment needed for this type of movie genre. The fast paced camera work accentuates the action and build up of the plot and continues throughout the movie to sustain energy and fear. Anderson, known to visually impress his audience, includes close up camera work during the horror and shock filled scenes to outline the unpleasant feelings the characters have throughout the film and cause the viewer to feel uncomfortably tied into the situations.
The plot of The Call effectively fits that of a thriller that pulls on your senses and brings on fear and excitement the further it draws its viewers. The fluidity of the film and arising conflicts captivate your attention in Anderson's film with uncomfortable scenes and situations that one would not deem as desirable. Watching a young girl be forced into the trunk of a car, seeing the murdering of a few others throughout the film, and being introduced into the mind of a serial-killer creates a unique plot and way of resolving and approaching a solution that holds your attention.
The Call does its job of creating a plot that will scare its audience, and beyond that it offers an original addition to the thriller genre collection. With the strange but alluring feelings that it creates, Brad Anderson's movie helps draw viewers more into this evolving genre and makes it both noteworthy and worthwhile to see.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The Call (2013): Dir: Brad Anderson / Cast: Halle Berry, Abigail Breslin, Morris Chestnut, Michael Eklund, David Otunga: In what could have been a compelling thriller about the traumatic aspects to working as a 911 operator turns into a contrived formula driven showcase about making a difference. Halle Berry plays a 911 operator who loses a caller when she makes the impulse mistake to redial a number upon disconnection. This results in a murder. Six months later the same villain strikes again and the victim is a teenager, played by Abigail Breslin who is abducted in a parking garage. Directed by Brad Anderson with some creepy atmosphere and a few effective action scenes on a highway otherwise what starts as a worthy premise gets dogged down in formula and an ending that seems to justify revenge. Berry is well cast as the lead who is traumatized by the events in the film's opening. However she proves smart and resourceful willing to risk her life for a stranger. Breslin also does well as the central victim who follows Berry's instructions while trapped in the trunk of a car. We even have wrestler David Otunga taking a break from his several in ring ass kicking session to plays a cardboard role. Other roles are flat or just absurd. The villain might have been more effective had he not been such a moron. He takes unnecessary risks that a thinking criminal might have avoided. Plus we have a male victim who is stabbed to death because remaining calm and listening to Breslin would have been the intelligent move. And let's not forget that Breslin is sixteen and on call here to be seen in her bra. Score: 5 / 10
Name any Halle Berry movie and you can't deny she has talent, despite a few hiccups like Catwoman, she is one of the all time great actresses and audiences like her. She's an X- Men favourite and whenever she's in a new movie I'm drawn to watching it, and as soon as I saw she was starring in The Call I set out to watch it. In this nail biting thriller Berry plays Jordan Turner, a 911 call operator who answers a call of a kidnapped young girl, but the twist: The kidnapper is potentially one from Jordan's past, one that was never brought to justice. Utilising all her skills Jordan attempts to rescue the girl before her kidnapper disappears. Brad Anderson is the director and he stirs suspense and tension superbly, he focuses on close ups of the characters and their expressions are clear and in our faces meaning we feel what they feel. The performances are excellent, I'm annoyed Halle Berry was Razzie nominated for her performance. Abigail Breslin is excellent, playing terrified and scared perfectly and Michael Eklund is one heck of a bad guy, he genuinely freaked me out. Would I watch this again? Definitely, it's tension and dread build superbly despite a cut short ending.
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