Underrated Gem: Cellular (2004)

Plot: A young man receives an emergency phone call on his cell phone from an older woman. The catch? The woman claims to have been kidnapped; and the kidnappers have targeted her husband and child next.


This is one of Jason Statham’s forgotten movies, which is a shame as it’s a pretty tight little action thriller. Statham plays a villainous kidnapper called Ethan Greer and as this was one of his earliest roles even then he was a pretty convincing bad guy; he oozes menace in every scene and comes off as really intimidating.


It was great to see Kim Basinger in a lead role again and she gives a believable performance as Jessica Martin, the kidnapped woman in a desperate situation.


I really enjoyed Chris Evans in this movie too; up until this point he tended to play the smart ass character and came off a little too similar to Ryan Reynolds. Cellular showed him as a really likable lead and when I’d heard he’d been cast as Captain America, I knew he’d do a top notch job.


You’ve also got William H. Macy as a bit of a bad ass cop and it’s refreshing to see him in a more action oriented role than we’re used to seeing.


John Ottman provides an excellent score, utilising phone sound effects with orchestra which really adds to the tension.


David R. Ellis directs the film as a taut and exciting thriller, which slightly unravels in the second half and becomes a little too hard to swallow. It’s a great high concept idea for a film though and for the most part it works really well. There’s just a little too many convenient plot twists which propel the story along and you may go “riiiight” a few times. It’s also pretty predictable and you can see some of the twists coming a mile off.


Cellular is well paced and you won’t notice the time going by and I stand by that it’s good entertainment for a Saturday night.