One Missed Call
What will it sound like when you die? In “One Missed Call,” a chain of people receive terrifying cell phone messages of their own final fatal moments. Though the messages can be deleted, their number is up. Beth Raymond (Shannyn Sossamon) is traumatized when she witnesses the gruesome deaths of two friends just days apart. Even more disturbing, she knows that both of them had received chilling cell phone messages-actual recordings of their own horrifying last moments. Impossibly, the calls were received days before they died, but each death occurred precisely when and how the messages foretold. The police think Beth is delusional-except for Detective Jack Andrews (Edward Burns) whose own sister was killed in a freak accident that bears a strange similarity to the deaths of Beth’s friends. Together, Jack and Beth work feverishly to unravel the mystery behind the ominous calls. But even as they get closer to the truth, Beth’s cell phone begins to ring with an eerie tune, and the readout says One Missed Call…
Apparently the success of such movies as “The Ring” and “The Grudge” has prompted filmmakers to continue the trend of re-making Japanese horror movies in the U.S. “One Missed Call” is another such remake. Unfortunately for fans of these horror movies that originate in Japan, the plots seem to be getting more and more absurd, and the special effects cheesier. “One Missed Call” features a malicious spirit that transmits its evil deeds using a cell phone signal. The victim gets a phone call from one or two days in the future, supposedly from the phone of a person who has already died. But on the other end of the line, it’s the person’s own voice, saying something that is cut off by a scream or a moan. Can the heroine discover the source of the deadly calls, before she becomes a victim herself? Of course, I won’t reveal her fate. But by the time you sit through nearly an hour-and-a-half of boring dialog and predictable scare-attempts, you probably won’t care what happens to her.
Although this is a horror movie, there is relatively little gore and minimal foul language. When the lead character is dropped off by her male companion and asks if he wants to come into the house with her, he declines. She simply grabs his arm and looks at him flirtatiously, and asks him to call her. The filmmakers could have easily put in a sex scene at this point, but they leave it at an invitation for a date.
Another point to consider is that in one scene, a television show called American Miracles is doing a story about the mysterious phone calls. They attempt to perform an exorcism on a young woman in a church. The host of the show talks about spiritual energy being similar to the waves that are emitted by microwaves and cell phones. A man then attempts to exorcise the evil spirits from the woman, and he asks the spirits to leave her in the name of Jesus. There is no indication that this man is a minister or priest, and the impression I got was that it was all an act being performed as entertainment for television. This could be very offensive to Christians. The language and violence, although less severe than in R-rated horror movies, are still enough to keep “One Missed Call” from receiving the Dove “Family-Approved” Seal.