63: Phone Booth

Phone Booth – April 4, 2003
Starring: Colin Farrell, Kiefer Sutherland‘s voice, Forest Whitaker
Written by: Larry Cohen
Directed by: Joel Schumacher

The plot: “Stuart Shepard finds himself trapped in a phone booth, pinned down by an extortionist’s sniper rifle.” – IMDB

My thoughts: Did this movie really come out in 2002? Why does it feel like it just came out a year or two ago? Well, I’m a little bit ashamed that I watched this movie on purpose, but I did it all the same and I won’t deny it.

So basically, the real plot of this is that Colin Farrell is a fucking asshole. He’s some PR guy with a wife and a woman he’s having some kind of emotional affair with (Katie Holmes in the role of a life time.) He calls her from a phone booth regularly (he tells her it’s because it’s quiet and she believes it. Come on girl, get with it!) and one day, after he hangs up with her…THE PHONE RINGS!

And who should be on the other end but one Mr. Jack Bauer Kiefer Sutherland? I couldn’t help but think of Scream with his very threatening, horrifyingly playful voice. Anyway, Kiefer’s goal is to make Colin realize and admit what a dick he’s been and if he doesn’t he/other people will die? “How?” you ask. Easy – Kiefer’s got a sniper rifle and he’s watching the whole thing!

So, it’s some socio-psychological-philosophical movie veiled as a thriller/crime movie. And yeah, it’s either supposed to teach the audience to not be such a dick and to treat other’s with respect because karma will get you or if you’re not nice, some lunatic sniper will stalk you, force you to stay in a phone booth and help you work through your problems with a gun to your head. I don’t know which. But let’s get to the good stuff, because we all know Colin Farrell played a great asshole and Forest Whitaker was the well-intentioned, logical cop.

Kiefer. Kiefer, Kiefer, Kiefer. The man can deliver a line whether it’s on screen or from a sound booth. He was simultaneously creepy and utterly hilarious. Some favorite lines, always occurring over the telephone:

Kiefer: Think about it. Why would a man with a cell phone call a woman every day from a phone booth?
Katie Holmes (in a baby voice): He said it was quiet.
Kiefer: Pam, that’s just stupid.

Hooker: God dammit, man! You gone made me hurt my dick hand!
Colin: Oooh! I’m sure you’re just as good with the other hand.
[Kiefer laughs]
Colin: Go away!
Hooker: I’ll be back bitch.
Caller: I was worried for you there, Stu. I thought she was going to poke an eye out with that…that hand.

[Colin giving Kiefer the silent treatment]
Kiefer: Stu, don’t do this. Please, come on. My sainted mother used to do this. She used to dish this out…Stu, please don’t do this. Stu, you’re bringing back my unhappy childhood. Stu, talk to me, please! Talk to me! I can’t take it Stu…Ahhhh!
[Kiefer cackles]
Kiefer: I’m kidding. I had a very happy childhood.

And there it is. Phone Booth. Predictable, obvious, overdone. Hilarious, entertaining, and surprisingly (maybe not surprisingly, I don’t know) acting.

Stars: 4/5


One thought on “63: Phone Booth

  1. Pingback: 83: Man on a Ledge (it’s that one about a man who’s on a ledge. Can you believe it?) « threesixfivefilm

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