DVD review: 'The Call' has tense start, weak finish

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Grade • B

DVD • For about an hour, "The Call" is as sharp a thriller as a person's nerves could possibly take. It centers on Jordan (Halle Berry), a Los Angeles 911 dispatcher who fields a call from a desperate teen-ager, Casey (Abigail Breslin), who's been kidnapped and is locked in a car trunk.

As she tries to help Casey, and nail down her location, Jordan quickly realizes that this kidnapper committed a similar crime six months earlier — a call that fielded, and has haunted her ever since. Director Brad Anderson ("Transsiberian," "The Machinist") ratchets the tension expertly, focusing tightly on Berry's and Breslin's faces as the danger mounts.

Then, in the last half-hour, the whole thing falls apart as Richard D'Ovidio's script slips into laughable psycho-killer cliches. —

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