The Call ****



Run Time: 94 mins                             Cert: 15


Synopsis: When 911 dispatcher Jordan Turner (Halle Berry) makes a mistake with tragic consequences, she vows she will never take a call again. However when teenager Casey (Abigail Breslin) is kidnapped she gets back on the line to fight for the caller’s life.


The film begins in a 911 call centre in which Jordan (Halle Berry) is working. After a careless mistake resulting in a caller’s death, she stops working on the phones. Six months later, teenager Casey Welson (Abigail Breslin) is kidnapped by a man named Michael Anderson (Michael Eklund) in a shopping centre car park. She calls 911 from the boot of his car and Jordan takes over the call.


The story is well written and has a number of twists. The majority of the movie takes place in real time and follows the lengthy phone call that takes place between the lead characters and while events do occur, the main thing that keeps the viewer’s attention is the anticipation and suspense.


Halle Berry’s performance is by far her best in recent years. Her character seems very human. She makes mistakes and suffers emotionally but is also determined to make things right. This makes Jordan a character the audience can relate to and adds depth to the movie.


Abigail Breslin also gives a great performance. Despite being young and inexperienced, Casey has strong survival instincts and fights even when death seems certain. She and Berry work well together and the trust established between them is a key element in the story.


Michael Eklund is both scary and convincing as deranged kidnapper Michael. His motivation for kidnapping the teenager is unclear and keeps the viewer guessing until the end.


Despite a promising start and middle, “The Call” loses its way in the third act. While there are some good twists, the last 20 minutes seem all over the place and the ending is disappointing.


Reviewed by Lesley Logan

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