One Missed Call – USA/UK/Japan/Germany, 2007

‘What will it sound like when you die?’

One Missed Call is a 2007 [released 2008] supernatural horror film directed by Eric Valette (Malefique) from a screenplay by Andrew Klavan. An international US/UK/Japanese/German co-production, it is a remake of the 2003 Japanese film of the same name directed by Takashi Miike, which itself was based on the Yasushi Akimoto novel Chakushin ari. The movie stars Shannyn Sossamon, Edward Burns, Ana Claudia Talancón, Ray Wise and Azura Skye.

Despite being a moderate box office success, the film was heavily panned by film critics, often regarding it as the worst J-horror remake to be released. It became the worst-reviewed film of 2008, receiving a rare 0% rating approval on Rotten Tomatoes, and winning a Mouldy Tomato Award: “One of the weakest entries in the J-horror remake sweepstakes, One Missed Call is undone by bland performances and shopworn shocks.”

When Beth Raymond (Shannyn Sossamon) witnesses the deaths of two friends, she knows there is more at work than just a tragic coincidence; days before they die, both victims hear their terrifying final moments on cell phones.

Though the police think Beth is crazy, detective Jack Andrews (Ed Burns), believes her. Together the pair attempt to unravel the mystery behind the horrifying messages before their own phone numbers come up…

Reviews:

“While most of the deaths are fairly straightforward, one looks like an outtake from a Final Destination movie. Overall, the acting is OK, although Ed Burns looks as if he’d rather be somewhere else. That aside, One Missed Call is a perfectly serviceable horror movie. It’s got an interesting story, a plot which (mostly) makes sense, and some creepy visuals.” Mike Long, DVD Sleuth

“The concept is ridiculous (even more so when we learn the back-story), and had the characters followed suit and just had some fun, again, this could have been something. But no, apart from a brief scene where Burns and Sossamon try to break into an apartment, there’s absolutely nothing even remotely amusing (intentionally so anyway) in the film.” Brian W. Collins, Horror Movie a Day

“French filmmaker Eric Valette (Malefique) was, one must assume, hired for his horror skills, but then how does one explain the complete lack of tension, the laughable scare scenes, the stupidly unconvincing creatures, and the complete and total void where the “atmosphere” should be? (Loud noises and dumb hallucinations we’ve got plenty of.)” Scott Weinberg, TheHorrorShow.tv

“It boasts a few authentic scares, particularly in the moments involving a surgical theatre and a vent shaft leading into a hospital basement (though even here, I was reminded of the superior Silent Hill). It’s just that it’s dull and lacking invention.” John Kenneth Muir, Reflections on Cult Movies and Classic TV

“Absent plot and characterization, the movie is pure, mechanized technique. French director Eric Valette does his best to disorient the audience with an unending series of close-ups, shots from low angles, shots from high angles, quick cuts, and a camera that won’t stop moving.” Philip Marchand, Toronto Star

” …yet another tired, ultimately incoherent horror movie that undoes the promise of its pretty good premise and potentially interesting story structure with dull scares, sloppy ending and a pair of unconvincing, leaden lead performances. Ken Fox, TV Guide

Cast and characters:

  • Shannyn Sossamon as Beth Raymond
  • Edward Burns as Detective Jack Andrews
  • Ana Claudia Talancón as Taylor Anthony
  • Ray Wise as Ted Summers
  • Azura Skye as Leann Cole
  • Johnny Lewis as Brian Sousa
  • Jason Beghe as Ray Purvis
  • Margaret Cho as Mickey Lee
  • Meagan Good as Shelley Baum
  • Rhoda Griffis as Marie Layton
  • Dawn Dininger as the ghost of Marie Layton
  • Ariel Winter as Ellie Layton
  • Sarah Jean Kubik as the ghost of Ellie Layton
  • Raegan Lamb as Laurel Layton
  • Karen Bayer as Mrs. Ford
  • Dave Spector as Gary
  • Mary Lynn Owen as Julie Cohn
  • Roy McCrerey as Dr. Painter
  • Greg Corbett as John
  • Bart Hansard as Howie
  • Katie Kneeland as Maddie
  • Jason Horgan as Dr. Brown
  • Kaira Akita as Jewel
  • Laura Harring as Mrs. Raymond
  • Wilbur Fitzgerald as Lieutenant
  • Lauren Peyton as Reception Nurse
  • Alana Locke as Young Beth

Release:

The film was released in North America on January 4, 2008.

Box office:

With a reported budget of $20 million, One Missed Call grossed $26,890,041 in the United States and $18,957,710 overseas for a worldwide total of $45,847,751.

 

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