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When A Stranger Calls 2006 Widescreen

Reviewing: Sony Pictures Widescreen  |  Rating:
John Gugie By John Gugie on
Badge: Publisher | Level: 7 | Movies & Documentaries Expertise:
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A girl babysits for a rich family. Once the parents leave, she begins to receive strange phone calls threatening the children, so she calls the police, They tell her that the call is coming from inside the house!

I had very low expectations for this remake but watched it anyway. I pretty much got just that - a badly scripted movie with twenty something actors, predictable scares amp; plot and an unoriginal story. All of these things, for me, a true horror fan, added up to a very boring and unintriguing movie with an almost laughable set of events.

However, in retrospect, I suppose that this movie does have some bit of value to horror fans, especially those who are relatively new to the genre. It is a thriller with a few scares for the weak at heart with some suspense. So it serve its purpose to that extent. But for us seasoned horror fans, it's full of dozens of horror genre movie clich├ęs and none of the scares truly scared me, as I seen them all before and hundreds of other similar movies of this genre. Plus, they are done with warning signs which signal the next scare to come while in advance - the music is a dead giveaway.

The story is really thin just with lone babysitter getting phone calls from a killer without a real motive. That's it. So, there really isn't much to this, other than the drama of repeated phone calls with a threatening voice. All the girl had to do was stop answering the phone! Basically, that's all we have to go on - the voice and the girl's terror. The original movie was thin as well but seemed more entertaining than this, so this remake seems like a waste of time.

There are not really any special effects to mention and no gore that I can recall. The music is fairly good but they overdid it with using it as a built-up of the suspenseful moments. The acting is nothing to write home about but it is acceptable. The highlight is Lance Henriksen as the voice of the stranger.

The ending is pretty stupid. This isn't really a spoiler but it ends with a pointless dream sequence, which is getting pretty much overdone with recent horror movies. It's really unnecessary for this film and maybe left it open for a sequel with an even dumber script and an even more unbelievable plot!

One other thing that bothers me is that I didn't see the children until the last 20 minutes of the movie. They slept through all of those phone calls?? They must either have trouble hearing or they're dead sleepers. The parents said the children were sick but they looked pretty healthy after we get to see them. For a while there I thought that perhaps the writer actually did something original and only had the babysitter believe that the children were in the bedroom when they actually were not. Too bad my suspicion was wrong.

Overall, this is a slightly below mediocre horror film which was unnecessary to have been made because nothing is really added to make it a better movie than the original. Simply put, it is way to predictable to scare most people - being scares is the point of a horror movie and this just doesn't cut it. I am sure teenagers will like it but I didn't.