6.2/10
4,808
64 user 72 critic

Phone (2002)

Pon (original title)
Trailer
1:14 | Trailer
Investigative reporter Ji-won begins to receive a series of menacing calls. To escape the terrifying and relentless clanging of the telephone, she changes her number and moves out. But the threatening campaign of terror continues unabated.

Director:

Byeong-ki Ahn
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Ji-Won Ha ... Ji-won
Yu-mi Kim Yu-mi Kim ... Ho-jeong
Woo-jae Choi Woo-jae Choi ... Chang-hoon
Ji-yeon Choi Ji-yeon Choi ... Jin-hie
Seo-woo Eun Seo-woo Eun ... Yeong-ju
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jeong-yun Choi ... Woman in elevator
Seong-hwan Jeong Seong-hwan Jeong
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Storyline

After writing a series of articles about pedophilia, the journalist Ji-won receives threatening calls on her cellular and she changes her number. Her close friend Ho-jung and her husband Chang-hoon invite Ji-won to move to their house in Bang Bae that is empty and closed. When the young daughter of her friends Young-Su answers a phone call in her mobile phone, the girl screams and changes her behavior, feeling a great attraction for her father and rejecting her mother. Meanwhile Ji-won receives weird phone calls and sees and listens to a teenager playing Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" on the piano. After investigating her phone number, Ji-won discovers that the original owner of the number, Jin-hee, had vanished and the two next owners of the number have mysteriously died in unusual circumstances. Her further investigation about Jin-hee discloses that the teenager was absolutely disturbed with her obsessive love for a man that had broken the relationship with her, and later she ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Last Call You'll Ever Get ...


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence/disturbing images and some sexual material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Connections

References Ringu (1998) See more »

User Reviews

 
Outstanding and frightening horror film
7 April 2005 | by ThrownMuseSee all my reviews

Ji-won is a reporter who recently uncovered a kiddie sex-scandal. Now the target of hatred by the allies of those she exposed, Ji-Won finds herself being stalked and harassed via her cellular phone. She gets a new phone, but the malicious calls continue. When her young niece Yeong-ju answers the phone one day, she starts yowling and seems permanently traumatized. When Ji-Won starts seeing visions of what appears to be a ghost, she sets out to determine what the hell is going on with her cellular phone, and finds out that the terror is much more personal than she realized.

So there's lots of familiar stuff going on in "Phone." We have a female investigative reporter, the typical female ghost with long black hair, a haunting via modern technology, and jumbled chronology. But this splendid little horror movie is not a rip-off of the effective (but overrated) Ringu. In fact, where many contemporary Asian "supernatural horrors" fail, Phone succeeds. The lead character is admirable and tough as nails, the antagonists are genuinely frightening, the tension is severe, and it doesn't take a rocket scientist to follow the non-linear narrative.

The story twists and turns to the point of unpredictability but not absurdity. The acting is great, mostly by first time actors. But this movie really belongs to the little girl who plays Yeong-ju. This girl OWNS the movie and the right to the title of "Creepiest kid." She goes from an adorable little kid to a demonic looking imp with wild facial contortions (sans CGI!) that has violent outbursts and tries to snog her father.

Some parts of the film are cheesy (after all, it is about a possessed cellphone), but all in all this is a great and rather sick movie. Phone confirms for me that the new wave of South Korea cinema is one of the best places to look for effective horror films these days.

My Rating: 8/10.


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Details

Country:

South Korea

Language:

Korean

Release Date:

26 July 2002 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

Phone See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$21,784,403
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Toilet Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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