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Movie Reviews
Night Caller [VOD]
(Susan Priver, Bai Ling, Steve Railsback, Robert Miano, | 1 hr. 24 min. | R | Girls and Corpses, Crappy World Films)

Summary: When a call-in psychic gets repeated phone calls from a serial killer, she finds herself in a race against time to save more victims’ lives — and possibly her own.

Verdict: Night Caller begins with a lot of promise, its opening shot a view through a car window of a murder scene accompanied by suspenseful music. The opening credits are over a montage of brutal killings. There’s so much potential.

The stakes are upped when the killer, all husky-voiced and menacing, dials in to Clementine’s psychic line. Writer-Director Chad Ferrin makes a good choice with his protagonist by having her be the real deal as opposed to a con-artist who is suddenly in way over her head. Susan Priver plays Clementine with the perfect combination of the concern of a daughter wanting to look after her elderly father and the underlying fear of a woman who suffers from the terrifying clarity of her visions.

And while having Clementine be older and having her father know maybe a bit more than you think he ought may buck a trend, Bai Ling’s Jade feels more like a caricature, not serving nearly as much purpose as she could, seeming more like the one-note scammer that Clementine isn’t.

While the film’s underlying premise is interesting, it is startlingly easy to tune out of, especially if graphic violence isn’t your thing. Scalping and necrophilia are the order of the day. The killer himself is very much a Silence of the Lambs Buffalo Bill-type, wishing to wear the flesh of his victims. To a similar end, the whole of Night Caller feels familiar; not derivative of something, but more of an homage. Fans of horror films and psychological thrillers may want to watch closely.

The final act is a rollercoaster that really needs to be experienced, with an excellent plot twist or two and a performance by Steve Railsback that makes him the MVP of the whole thing.

If you don’t mind a bit of gore or heavy-handed subject matter inside a thriller film that makes the absolute most of tight camera angles and muted color palates, Night Caller is definitely the movie for you.

Review: Ashley J. Cicotte

Night Caller is available to watch VOD.