Cellular

Movie Review by A. Messenger

Starring: Kim Basinger, Chris Evans, Jason Statham, Eric Christian Olsen
Director: David R Ellis

CELLULAR comes from Larry Cohen the same writer as the excellent PHONE BOOTH, a film that took me completely by surprise, so I went into this movie expecting great things from the word go.

In PHONE BOOTH everything centred around a phone fixed in the street. It was a phone booth – got it! In CELLULAR once again everything centres on the phone but his time it’s a cell phone so not only does it move around but it moves all over the place right the way through the film.

The cell phone belongs to Ryan (Chris Evans) and he just can’t put it down because he’s picked up a call from someone he doesn’t even know but whose life is now in his hands. Jessica (Kim Basinger) has been kidnapped and using the loose wires from a smashed phone in the attic where she is being held she has managed to randomly dial Ryan’s cell phone number. Although initially sceptical of her plight, once he is made a believer and as circumstances begin to unravel, he becomes the only one who can save Jessica and her family and while seemingly thwarted at every turn he never once gives up using any resource that’s at hand.

CELLULAR is every bit as ‘edge of your seat’ as PHONE BOOTH and while it’s just as exciting it’s sunny Los Angeles location does give it a lighter feel than the New York setting of it’s predecessor. This is not a bad thing however and combined with the constant moving around as opposed to the static action of PHONE BOOTH it does feel like a very different movie.

As well as the two main leads there are also some excellent and very strong character performances by William H. Macy as Detective Mooney (it’s good to see him getting plenty of screen time) and Jason Statham whose performances seem to get better with every film he’s in. It’s just a pity the very attractive Jessica Biel didn’t have more to do.

While there might be one or two rather convenient points in the plot, its well worth overlooking these as CELLULAR really is an excellent if rather unusual action picture. My expectations were completely lived up to.

6 out of 6 stars

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