Sunday, May 18, 2003

Went and saw 'Phone Booth' this afternoon. Great stuff. Colin Farrell, who has never come to my attention before was wonderful, as were Keither Sutherland and Forrest Whittaker. A really tense battle of wits with an exciting climax. In these days of two hour plus movies, with barely a scene going by that isn't digitally altered in some way, it's nice to have a film that clocks in under an hour and a half with the only special effects being the bangs and the tomato ketchup blood.

In these post-'Seven', post-'serial killer with their own twist' days, the concept is perhaps starting to become a little cliched, a sniper targets people, phones them up and gives them the chance to confess their sins or else they'll be shot. Stu Shepard, a rather arrogant and self-centred but not actually evil media publicist, is number three to be targetted. After the sniper shoots someone attacking Shepherd in the phone booth he's standing in he must deal with the demands of the sniper and the armed police to survive, some of which are in direct conflict with one another.

And at the end I discovered it was a Joel Schumacher film! It's a damn sight better than 'The Client' or 'Batman Returns'. If I have any gripe about the film it's only that Shepherd is being forced to repent over a crime he hasn't actually committed and which it's not entirely clear that he would do in the future. Possibly this is so the audience doesn't lose it's sympathy for him and his plight but it does make the moral conflict a rather difficult one. But this is a minor point. If you want a break from the big showy action films of the summer, try this one out.


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