Review: 'The Call' entertains with realistic portrayal
Published: Monday, March 18, 2013
Updated: Friday, March 22, 2013 17:03
Directed by Brad Anderson, "The Call" is a breakneck, truly thrilling movie, one that builds excitement through brains, brutality, shock and suspense.
This is the first WWE Studios film that I thought was good. Jordan Turner (Halle Berry), a veteran 911 operator is so disturbed by a small mistake she made during a call, which resulted in the kidnapping and subsequent death of the young girl on the other end of the line, she has decided to step away from the phones and now trains the new recruits.
Unfortunately, Jordan is not a very good trainer as we reach the arbitrary "Six months later" mark films love to employ. At this point, the same creep kidnapper is up to his antics. Another young blonde, Casey (Abigail Breslin), has been kidnapped, and she manages to get through to 911. Jordan stands by with a group of new recruits behind her when the operator taking the call freaks out. It's time for Jordan to step in and make this one right. Very commendable, but not what really grabs you and takes you on an exhausting ride. That part comes from viscerally feeling for Casey (Abigail Breslin) as she panics while being trapped inside the trunk of a psychopath's stolen vehicle. If only she wasn't calling 911 from an untraceable TracFone. If only the emergency operator, Jordan, hadn't messed up the 911 call the last time this psycho kidnapper got a hold of a young, blonde cutie. If only that town car driver could have been more on the ball. If only they hadn't put such a bad wig on Halle Berry! Some of the decisions made by some of the characters just make you want to yell at the screen.
For being against the clock thriller, the movie has you going until the final 20 minutes when it goes into "Saw" mode. The ending will make you roll your eyes and that is a shame because everything leading up to it was what a decent thriller is all about. At least Halle Berry is able to hold her own and keep you interested in her character and the story. I must say that this film delivered on the real substance of being a 911 Dispatcher. This film gave a look into the real moment-to-moment split-second decisions made by these seldom-praised messengers of help. Berry was spot on in her portrayal of Jordan. The film was totally believable up to the ending. There is no down time and at no point does the movie get slow as many thrillers do. One thing is for sure, you won’t be able to take a potty break! Of course, the movie does have some weak points, but what movies don't? My main grip would be the ending, it seemed kind of lazily constructed, but at the same time, I think they wanted to make it somewhat realistic. I don’t believe that his movie is award-winning, but it is an entertaining movie to watch.