The Call (2013): Film Review

Tagline: “There are 188 million 911 calls a year. This one made it personal.”

From the director of The Machinist, Brad Anderson, comes The Call which at first glance looks like an old-school thriller – reminiscent of Taken to some extent. I must admit that I did go into the cinema thinking it would be a less professional rip-off of this, but much to my delight it wasn’t like that at all. Starring Halle Berry and Abigail Breslin, this film will more than surely surprise you in a very unexpected way.

Jordan Turner (Berry) is a 911 operator with a vast experience in solving people’s everyday urgent situations, that is, until she makes a mistake in helping a girl who is about to be kidnapped, which in the end leads to her cruel death. The event traumatises Jordan and makes her question her career. Six months later, she overhears a call from Casey Welson (Breslin), who rings 911 from the boot of a car desperately seeking for help after being abducted by an unknown man in a shopping centre. Jordan must put her experience and her natural instincts to the test and try to save her, as well as make sure justice is made.

In all honesty, this movie turned out to be massively better than I had first expected. It is fast-paced and not dull at all in the slightest. In fact, as the plot unravels and gets more and more complex, the atmosphere becomes significantly creepy. The audience will soon discover just how unbalanced, dark and twisted the main perpetrator actually is, despite the first half of the film. In addition to all this, the jaw-dropping ending will undoubtedly blow your mind. I know it did mine! Halle Berry is given a rather vintage look here, very different to how I’ve ever seen her before. Nevertheless, she plays her character well and makes for an essential piece in this exciting, yet mysterious puzzle that is the film plot.

Without giving anything away, I’m just going to tell you that a lot of tension and suspense builds up as the movie carries on and the twist at the end is truly unexpected. There is a visibly brilliant chemistry between Berry’s and Breslin’s characters that makes the situation feel ‘natural’, despite this being probably the most inappropriate word I could use considering the plot. Moreover, it offers a glimpse into how a 911 call centre works and how much stress is involved there, which I must admit did fascinate me greatly.

If you’re into action-thrillers with sudden-surprise plot twists then I would suggest giving The Call a try. Even if it’ll definitely not attract any attention whatsoever from the Academy Awards, it’s still worth a watch as it is one of those films which will give you something to think about upon viewing it.

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