Friday, March 15, 2013

For Halle, 'The Call' Is in Miss Category

OUT of the blue last week, a companion and I launched into a conversation about Halle Berry.

Like just about everyone else, we gave her her due for being beautiful. Some of us admire the actress because she rocks short hair and so do we.

In any case, talk turned to her career. She’s a middling actress; we gave her that. Then we considered her various film roles. Companion did not like her in “Die Another Day.” She thought the acting was off. Frankly, Yours Truly did not recall the acting – it was probably OK – but I vividly remember the scene of her coming out of the ocean a la Ursula Andress in “Dr. No,” the first of the James Bond films. In fact, HB shattered the image of UA for me, I asserted.

Moving along the trajectory of HB’s career, we concurred that we did not like “Monster’s Ball.” Said I: “So often they give Oscars to actors for the wrong role.”

Companion didn’t have too much good to say about “Jungle Fever,” thinking HB woefully miscast. I liked it better. We gave “Bulworth” two thrumbs up and were ecstatic about “Swordfish.” Girlfriend was as sharp as a tack (wardrobe-wise) in that little romp with John Travolta

“Her best film,” I asserted, “is ‘Boomerang’.” Companion liked this one, too, though less so than me. In my estimation, HB has yet to do anything better than “Boomerang.” Hers has been a very uneven career, acting-wise.

Now here comes “The Call,” which opens today in U.S. theaters. HB is 911 operator Jordan Turner. Jordan is accustomed to talking people off of cliffs and keeping them calm in very challenging circumstances. (See video above.)

Those are handy skill sets, and she must call on them and others to
save Casey Welson (Abigail Breslin) from the man in her house. He’s not supposed to be there, incidentally. Through a wild coincidence (or poor plot development), Jordan has history with this intruder (Michael Eklund). I know. WT! (What the …!).

While “The Call” is not one of HB’s best efforts – the acting tends toward tepid – she is not the only problem. The film has other issues around plausibility; it’s also derivative. And then there’s the ending. It ain’t thrilling. Better luck next time Halle.

”The Call: is rated R. Visit to learn more about the film. Rx.

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