Phone Booth

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Phone Booth (2002) ---- Starring Colin Farrell, Kiefer Sutherland, and Forest Whitaker

Mar 1, 2006 (Updated Mar 1, 2006)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:very suspenseful, was carried out decently, loved Forest Whitaker

Cons:music was terrible, a little rushed, needed a sub-plot

The Bottom Line: A suspense filled movie about a man being held hostage in a phone booth and everything he has to do to make it out alive.


Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot.

Phone Booth is a film much like Speed, in which the meat of the movie takes place in one tight spot. For this one, we get to see Colin Farrell spend just about the entire time stuck in a phone booth in New York City. It doesn't sound exciting if I leave out the details, but if you throw in a few of the dramatic effects, it starts to form a story that is pretty interesting in concept.

A killer is loose in New York City, and is using his skills as a sniper to play cat-and-mouse games with people he feels have committed wrongs. He has taken out a dirty businessman and a Pornography King, and now he has set his sights on Stu Shepard. Shepard is a wheeling and dealing hot shot who sells people on the idea that he can get them publicity in New York City. He really doesn't have the connections to make these things happen though, and his promises often fall empty.

Shepard is played by Colin Farrell, who while doing his business by cell phone on a stroll through the streets, happens upon a phone booth that will change his life. From that phone he places a call to a woman he is trying to hook up with, and he does this despite being married already. Upon getting off the phone with her, it rings, and he answers it without even thinking twice. Answering the phone was his first mistake. On the other end is the killer, and he has a game to play.

Feeling that Shepard has done nothing of value to this point in his life, the caller is going to make him realize his mistakes. From there we learn everything that Shepard has done wrong in his past, and how he has abused relationships with people in order to further himself, and get what he wants out of life. Taking advantage of others has put him in a situation he cannot control. The caller won't let him get off the phone, and issues many threats about killing him or calling his wife if he doesn't respond to all of the commands. Of course Shepard has to be shown that the threats are real and that is were the tension starts to build.

Phone Booth is a pretty quick movie, and it does its best to add a lot of chaos to what is going on. Director Joel Schumacher does his best to start out light, and build up the suspense by throwing in a lot of elements that Shepard must deal with while staying on the phone. People trying to take the phone from him, street-walkers, and even the police cause problems for the situation, and getting out of this alive is not going to be easy. Colin Farrell does a good job as the "mouse" and it is interesting to see how he is going to handle each new wrinkle in the story. Forest Whitaker plays one of the cops trying to talk him out, and Katie Holmes plays the girl he was trying to hook up with in other roles.

On the other end of the phone is the voice of Kiefer Sutherland, and he plays the "psycho" killer quite well. But is he really psychotic, or is there a method to the madness that he is bringing down on the lives of all these people. It's ironic, because a lot of scenes are shown like they would be on "24" with split screens of events taking place at the same time. This adds an interesting dimension to the film, and helps keep the pace moving. Some things that didn't work though were the terrible selections for music and the score which didn't help the film at all. I also thought that the film could have used another sub-plot in order to make the main story seem even more interesting.

Phone Booth was carried out pretty well for a story that takes place almost entirely on the phone. There are a lot of moments filled with suspense as you don't know what is going to happen next, and the story works with a lot of chaos and confusion to keep the audience nervous as they are watching. This keeps the movie interesting for the duration, and in my opinion is one of the things that put the film over the top. There are things missing that could have made the movie great, but as it was this was a very interesting and exciting movie that is well worth picking up cheap.






Recommend this product? Yes


Viewing Format: DVD

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