A sadistic stranger (Tommy Flanagan) subjects a teenage baby-sitter (Camilla Belle) to an increasingly threatening round of phone calls.
" This leaves young Belle (The Ballad of Jack and Rose) to wander rooms aimlessly, and for the musicians and Foley artists to work feverishly pretending there's reason for suspense. "
" Dial M for mediocre. "
" If there's a single dead-wrong instinct in this movie that isn't pursued with the blind determination of an amorous terrier during high-scent season, darned if I can remember it. "
" For real thrills, rent the original, turn down the lights and scare yourself silly. "
" This version is a thin, protracted study in shifting Hollywood strategies. "
" A production that never comes close to realizing its potential to tweak the viewer's primal fears. "
" It's funny how the story's mechanics hold up in the age of cells (static) and caller ID. "
" The film is not quite suspense-free, but almost. When finding a dead body underwater isn't scary, something is very wrong. "
" Stranger is one long tease that, instead of building tension around Jill's efforts to outwit her mysterious stalker, has her run around the house, unsuccessfully calling every friend, cop and family member she knows. "
" Even by the lowest standards, this is a frightless, cynically made movie. "
" A modestly clever concept gets indifferent execution in When a Stranger Calls, another bigger-yet-blander remake of an allegedly classic' '70s shocker. "
" If you've seen either Black Christmas or Halloween, there's nothing new here: the hyped-up score keeps telling us we ought to be scared, but the suspense feels mechanical and fake. "
" This week's installment in the 'this film is so bad we're not screening it for critics' series. "
" Nothing in this droopy remake of the 1978 thriller starring Carol Kane could possibly be as frightening as the Windex bill for those two-story picture windows, not to mention the ones that surround the indoor arboretum and fish pond. "
" When a Stranger Calls has been remade -- with undistinguished if inoffensive results -- by Simon West, who is quickly becoming a reliable purveyor of Hollywood's dreckiest dreck. "
" The scare-free When a Stranger Calls is the worst of the seminal horror movies from the late '70s and early '80s that have been getting the remake treatment lately. "
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