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Cell (2016)

Trailer
2:31 | Trailer
When a mysterious cell phone signal causes apocalyptic chaos, an artist is determined to reunite with his young son in New England.

Director:

Tod Williams

Writers:

Stephen King (based on the novel by), Stephen King (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Cusack ... Clay Riddell
Samuel L. Jackson ... Tom McCourt
Isabelle Fuhrman ... Alice Waxman
Clark Sarullo ... Sharon Riddell
Ethan Andrew Casto ... Johnny Riddell
Owen Teague ... Jordan
Stacy Keach ... Charles Ardai
Joshua Mikel ... Raggedy
Anthony Reynolds ... Ray
Erin Elizabeth Burns Erin Elizabeth Burns ... Denise
Jeff Hallman ... Hog-Tied Man (as Jeffrey Hallman)
Mark Ashworth ... Bartender
Wilbur Fitzgerald ... Geoff
Catherine Dyer ... Sally
E. Roger Mitchell ... Roscoe
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Storyline

When a strange signal pulsates through all cell phone networks worldwide, it starts a murderous epidemic of epic proportions when users become bloodthirsty creatures, and a group of people in New England are among the survivors to deal with the ensuing chaos after. Written by mystic80

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When everyone is connected no one is safe


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing violent content, terror, brief sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 June 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cell See more »

Filming Locations:

Atlanta, Georgia, USA

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,323,012
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Lloyd Kaufman, the co-Founder of Troma Entertainment and director of films like The Toxic Avenger (1984) and Tromeo and Juliet (1996), makes a cameo in the opening airport scene as the bystander in a blue Hawaiian shirt. See more »

Goofs

The open credit sequence clearly takes place at the Atlanta Airport (Harttsfield Jackson), signs are clearly seen throughout the Delta terminals, Boston Airport announcements are dubbed in until we see John Cusack come off the airplane. See more »

Quotes

Tom McCourt: Clay, I'm really sorry about your family.
Clay Riddell: Don't be sorry because there is nothing to be sorry about yet.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the closing credits have finished, the catalyst signal from the movie plays for approximately 5-10 seconds, with no image, as if attempting to convert the audience. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sean Bradley Reviews: The Dark Tower (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

You'll Never Walk Alone
Performed by Frank Simes
Music by Richard Rodgers
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
For Us, It's a Horror Film. For Our Grandparents, It's a Documentary
14 June 2016 | by DVDExoticaSee all my reviews

Okay, people are going to tell you that this movie is dumb and corny and frustrating. Don't listen to them. Admittedly, they're absolutely right, but don't listen to them anyway.

This movie is the closest we're going to get to a sequel to Maximum Overdrive from Stephen King, and it's actually pretty close. Instead of a bunch of disparate stragglers surviving in a world where humanity is overrun by machines being controlled by an alien force, we get a bunch of disparate stragglers surviving in a world where humanity is overrun by people being controlled by an alien force. So it also dips into Walking Dead knock-off territory, where everyone who uses their phone basically becomes a fast zombie; but on the plus side, this still has a lot of King vibes in it.

Do you ever think about horror movies after seeing them and realize, if you view the film from the evil supernatural side of things, its motives make no sense? Like, "if the demon spirit wanted to possess the little girl before anyone could figure out what was going on and stop it, why did it spend the first 45 minutes terrorizing the babysitter and attracting needless attention to itself?" Well, this movie is like that: if you think about whatever mysterious intelligence is behind what's happening, what it decides to make the people it controls do doesn't really add up. But this movie goes the extra step, where you don't even have to do the thought experiment and shift perspectives to see that this movie regularly makes no sense.

It's like King wrote down his dream and these people filmed it. And that's kinda cool if you're prepared to view this film like Kurosawa's Dreams or Fulci's The Beyond. If broken and contradictory logic is going to bother you, you're going to be kicking a hole in your monitor. And for all the fun King brings to his work, there's also his usual flaws. In this case: hokey characters. DJ Liquid? The "you're cute" lady? The King Of the Internet? But it's also kind of charming in a "King's our lovable grandpa who writes these crazy stories" kinda way, and this film gets past them easily enough with plenty of fast paced action and shocking violence.

Other pros: Sam Jackson and John Cusack give their roles more weight than the script deserves. You actually care if they survive and worry for them in a way most lesser films don't manage. Stacy Keach shows up for a bit of fun, too. The story's also ambitious, playing with big ideas and isn't afraid to get pretty dark and cynical, which is nice to see in a more mainstream horror film with a name cast.

Other cons: Most of the down to Earth effects are fine (zombies, gore), but it tries to depict some very big things that clearly just aren't in its budget. There's a scene right in the very beginning where an airplane explodes, which they really should've left off-camera, because it really looks super fake. And some shots in the film's climax look like a cartoon.

Look, this is a heavy-handed movie for technophobes. Everyone who uses their cellphone turns into a mindless zombie. Characters walk through a brand new movie theater with a giant sign advertising "now with digital Projection," and then immediately into a drive-in movie lot. Keach gives a big dramatic reading to the line, "you can't stop progress, but you're never too old to fight it" before firing a bow and arrow. There's nothing subtle for miles around, and I'm sure we all know someone, probably older, who'll applaud the scene where people throw their smart phones into a fire, thinking finally someone else understands that change and technology are evil.

But for the rest of us, it's a pretty amusing, entertaining time so long as you're willing to not question anything it throws at you. Fast paced, loads of thrills, our protagonists walk around with armfuls of weapons and ammo; and yet the film takes itself seriously enough that it never starts to feel like a bad joke. Silly sure, but earnest. All it needed was a rockin' AC/DC soundtrack.


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