The Call movie review: Rescue me

Mar 15, 2013 at 8:08 a.m. ET

Halle Berry stars as a troubled 9-1-1 operator in this nail-biting thriller that delivers on tense, claustrophobic action, while a teen girl’s life is at stake. With a shocking surprise ending, this movie may be ushering in a new kind of bad-a** heroine.

The Call

3.5 Stars: Perfect for fans of Silence of the Lambs

Jordan (Halle Berry) spends her days asking panicked people, “Where is your emergency?” But when she bungles a call from a girl who gets abducted from her home and is then murdered, Jordan is overcome with guilt and sorrow.

Days later, a call comes in from a girl named Casey (Abigail Breslin), who’s been nefariously locked inside the trunk of a man’s car after being abducted from a parking garage. It’s up to Jordan to help her escape, but is Jordan mentally stable enough for the task?

Battle of the flicks: The Call vs. The Incredible Burt Wonderstone >>

The Call

Turns out the abductor, a nameless stranger with a dark history (Michael Eklund), has an underground bunker where he takes his “girls," apparently trying to gruesomely conjure his teenage girlfriend who died of cancer years ago. The former girlfriend lost her beautiful golden locks to chemo, so it’s Casey’s long blond hair that makes her the unfortunate target.

The Call

When police leads go cold, Jordan takes it upon herself to find Casey — even if it’s the last thing she does, and it may very well be.

Halle Berry and Abigail Breslin both do an excellent job, trying to find the truth in these characters that are a bit underwritten, but the true star of the movie is the life-or-death scenario that plays out. Though this is no Silence of the Lambs, it does have a solid creep factor and the ending brings a whole new layer of payback. Many critics didn't buy it, but I loved it.

Bottom line: Once Casey gets kidnapped, the film kicks into high gear and has plenty of chills and thrills. But if you have a teenage daughter or are prone to nightmares, you may want to go see The Incredible Burt Wonderstone.

Photo credit: Sony Pictures

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