The Black Phone Movie Review

The Black Phone Movie Review
After relinquishing the helm of the "Doctor Strange" sequel over creative differences, director Scott Derrickson has returned to his horror roots with "The Black Phone," based on a short story by Joe Hill. The stripped-down horror-thriller is what Derrickson made his name on before entering the Marvel world in 2016, and his latest offers a sense this is where he likes to spend his time. Derrickson is comfortable navigating dark and demented worlds, so it's frustrating when "The Black Phone" doesn't come together in a successful way.

The movie is set in 1978, where the legend of The Grabber (played by Ethan Hawke) looms over a community. The town was shocked by the disappearance of a young boy and hope is fading he will be found alive. One day after school, Finney (Mason Thames) stops to help a man who has dropped all his groceries. He quickly picks up on clues he's in danger - but before he can flee, he is in the back of The Grabber's van. Finney wakes up in a prison-like basement, on a mattress on the floor, without much else around. There's a phone on the wall, which The Grabber insists doesn't work, but Finney is able to use it to communicate with other victims.

Much of "The Black Phone" plays like something we've seen before. The movie is spent watching Finney attempt to escape his imprisonment, but The Grabber is a pro at what he does. Derrickson is good at creating a few tense escape attempts, but the film's lax pacing doesn't sustain these minor moments.

Finney lives with his abusive father (Jeremy Davies) and sister Gwen (Madeleine McGraw), who have had a hard time moving forward as a family since their mother passed away. When Finney is trapped, there's a sense through Thames' performance that he is trying to survive the clutches of The Grabber not only for himself, but also in order to save his sister Gwen, so she isn't left behind with just their father. A sense of loss permeates the story and is occasionally effective, but the downfall of "The Black Phone" is the horror elements of the screenplay.

Derrickson co-wrote the script with frequent collaborator C. Robert Cargill, and the movie's twists are so convenient to the movie that it's hard to not be distracted, even when it's generally important to suspend logic with a horror film. The contrivances continue to build up in the final act, and that takes away from any moderate success the film previously built.

"The Black Phone" might suffer from a bad connection, but Hawke sure understood what he signed up for. The Grabber's menace hangs heavily over the film, and Hawke relishes in playing the demented captor. It's a shame that the movie couldn't keep up with him every step of the way.

The Black Phone Movie Review By Matthew Passantino

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About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
The Black Phone Movie Review The Black Phone Movie Review Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Saturday, July 30, 2022 Rating: 5

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