: : : When a Stranger Calls

Story

Released a year after John Carpenter's 1978 Halloween, this thriller by longtime actor-turned-director Fred Walton has held a strong following of its own. In an exemplary piece of suspense, the film begins with a babysitter (Carol Kane) fielding threatening phone calls while on the job. She soon finds that a pair of children in her charge have been murdered in their beds; she is nearly killed herself by the homicidal maniac before police arrive. As with Halloween, the action jumps some years ahead, when Kane's character is herself a wife and mother--and the monster escapes from a mental institution to re-create his original carnage in the heroine's own home. Between these exciting bookends, the film loses its way and becomes dissatisfying and obscure. But Walton compensates by engineering a couple of great horror moments worth savoring. Tom Keogh

DVD Features

  • Color
  • Closed-captioned
  • Widescreen

Cast

Carol KaneJill Johnson
Rutanya AldaMrs. Mandrakis
Carmen ArgenzianoDr. Mandrakis
Charles DurningJohn Clifford
Ron O'NealLt. Charlie Garber
Colleen DewhurstTracy
Michael ChampionBill
Steven AndersonStephen Lockart

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When a Stranger Calls mini icon
3.3 / 10
Rate
(0.0666/d/web3)