Mini-Reviews: “The Call” & “Dead Man Down”
Today, here are two quick mini-reviews for the day of Halle Berry’s The Call and Colin Farrell’s Dead Man Down.
Enjoy. (Trust me, reading the reviews are more fun than watching the movies themselves.)
Directed by: Brad Anderson (The Machinist)
Starring: Halle Berry (Gothika), Abigail Breslin (Zombieland), Morris Chestnut (Think Like a Man) and more.
Rating: R -for violence, language, frightening sequences.
Synopsis: When veteran 911 operator, Jordan (Halle Berry), takes a life-altering call from a teenage girl (Abigail Breslin) who has just been abducted, she realizes that she must confront a killer from her past in order to save the girl’s life.
Review: First, I must get something off my chest. I had a phone call with Halle about The Call (and about her hideous hair in the movie). I wasn’t supposed to share it with you, but I am breaking the rules to share with you a snippet of what that call was like:
Someone had to say what we were all thinking! Okay, so, did you watch the trailer? If you did…then you saw the movie. Save yourself the $10 or so. Thrillers intend to be exactly that, although oftentimes they thrill at the expense of common sense and reason. Such is the case with The Call. Here is my mini-review of this film:
SCORE: (1/5 stars)
Directed by: Niels Arden Oplev (the original The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo)
Starring: Noomi Rapace (the original The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo), Colin Farrell (Total Recall), Terrence Howard (Crash), Dominic Cooper (The Devil’s Double) and more.
Rating: R -for language, nudity, violence…and “R”efund “R”equired!
Synopsis: Dead Man Down centers on a brave enforcer Victor, played by Farrell, right hand man to an underground crime lord in New York City. He seeks to avenge the death of his wife and daughter caused by his boss. When his employer is threatened by a mysterious killer, Victor also becomes detective. Victor is seduced and blackmailed by Beatrice, played by Rapace, a victim turned avenger whose intense chemistry leads them spiraling into payback delivered in violent catharsis….
Review: Attention-getting and exciting in both the beginning and the end…with nothing in the middle to hold it together. The film would’ve been greater had it skipped the middle 90 minutes where nothing of any consequence seemed to happen at all. The movie trodges along with the multiple angles and stories that serve little to no purpose.
Definitely interesting seeing Noomi Rapace in a victim type of role, weakened by her past, as opposed to the stronger female characters we are used to seeing her play (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Prometheus, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows). Terrence Howard’s acting ability is lost in this role that could just as easily have been played by someone like Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson…and don’t get me started on Colin Farrell.
Bad acting (yes, even with Terrence Howard), dreadful pacing, storytelling and mix of plots. If you like the original The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo then you will appreciate the same style of pacing here. I did not as it was diluted with meaningless events, people and cliche sub-plots. It would seem that the entire film’s budget rested in the explosion special effects as opposed to anything worthwhile in making the film any good.
Dead Man Down is as lively as the title sounds in all but the beginning and end of the film. The trailers, posters and featurettes were far more entertaining than the movie itself.
Dead Man Down (Score: 1/5)
Thanks for reading! Happy Watching!
-T, The Focused Filmographer
up next: Trailer Time Thursday!