Dave's Rating:


… totally boring and not scary …

Who's in It: Shannyn Sossamon, Edward Burns, Ray Wise, Azura Skye, Margaret Cho, Meagan Good

The Basics: Death calls you on your cell phone, and then you die. It's The Ring meets the Verizon "Can you hear me now?" Guy. And it's also where the PG-13 horror-movie road dead-ends, in a cul-de-sac of boredom with a lot of young people freaking out over ominous voice mails. I know that R-ratings move fewer tickets. But that's not my problem. Marketing departments are not filmmakers.

What's the Deal? I kept rewriting this movie in my head as I watched it. Like, wouldn't it be more awesome if Death came after every dirtbag who misused a cell phone? Oh, you're texting while you drive? You die. You have loud, inane conversations in line at the post office? You die. You take a call or check your e-mail in a movie theater? You die. You won't stop talking on your phone even though the checkout lady at the supermarket is trying to tell you stuff and move you along so the people behind you don't have to wait all day to buy bread like it's the U.S.S.R. in 1977? You die. See? The movie in my head is better.

Already Nominated in the 2008 Category of Most Egregious Waste of a More-or-Less Cool Cast of People: You get Ray Wise, who was the killer dad on Twin Peaks and is sorta fun as the devil on Reaper. You get Shannyn Sossamon, whom I find totally appealing, even though I've never seen her cast in a good movie. And you get about 30 seconds each of the groovy Meagan Good (Brick) and comedian Margaret Cho. The former dies early, and the latter plays a detective with no personality. Why?

What Else Sucks About It Besides Being Totally Boring and Not Scary: It tries to get all meta and comment on itself by including a plotline about a cheesy paranormal reality show. If you're going to make a horror film, you have to take it seriously, or all you are is a pale Scream impersonation. Or worse, you're Scary Movie 4.

One Great Moment: I will praise it for its one good scene, the one where a preacher performs an exorcism on a cell phone. It's going to be the best cell-phone exorcism in the movies this year. You can mark my words on that.


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