'The Caller' Movie Review, Written by: Karen Benardello
Director: Matthew Parkhill (‘Dot the I,’ TV’s ‘The Afternoon Play’)
Starring: Rachelle Lefevre (‘Twilight,’ ‘New Moon’), Stephen Moyer
Building believable and exciting suspense and anticipation between a protagonist and antagonist in a thriller is usually the most important part of the plot. But rarely showing the enemy as she battles the hero, as seen in the new Samuel Goldwyn Films feature ‘The Caller,’ is a risky move that surprisingly paid off. Director Matthew Parkhill forgoed a continuous stream of intense stunts to instead focus on building the characters’ backstories and personalities, which helped draw in and engage viewers.
‘The Caller’ follows the recently divorced Mary Kee (played by Rachelle Lefevre), who is eager to start a new life in a different apartment, away from her abusive ex-husband Steven (portrayed by Ed Quinn). Mary begins to receive strange phone calls from a mysterious woman, Rose (played by Lorna Raver), who’s asking for someone who she believes still lives in the apartment. Mary initially connects with Rose, as the two discuss their abusive relationships.
But when Rose reveals she’s calling from the past, Mary is anxious to stop contact, as she doesn’t want to believe she’s being contacted by someone from 25 years earlier. Mary begins to ignore Rose, and starts to build a relationship with Professor John Guidi (portrayed by Stephen Moyer) instead. Annoyed that she’s being disregarded, Rose starts taking revenge on Mary.
‘The Caller’ is unique in the fact that it doesn’t solely rely on physical scare tactics to engage its audience. As Lefevre has said of Parkhill, he wanted to focus on the actors’ portrayals of the characters, as well as the characters’ backgrounds. The actress expertly connected with Mary, and was flawlessly able to play her as wanting to move forward with her life and form new relationships after the end of her marriage. In the beginning of the film, she was so willing to talk to Rose, as they bonded over their abusive relationships. Viewers will also believe Mary is willing to start a romantic relationship with John, as he’s the complete opposite of her ex-husband; he wants to protect her from both Rose’s revenge and Steven’s continued pursuit of her.
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