Cinematic Releases: Cell - Reviewed

Check out our review of the newest Stephen King book to film translation, Cell. 

Once again, a brutal apocalypse is upon us. A melancholy cast of typically great actors tries to save us from legions of flesh destroying humans that have been brain wiped by a rogue cell phone signal that's turned them evil. Rage compels them to attack and kill humans. As if the zombie craze hasn't been run through the ringer enough times, Cell gives us the absolute worst of the bunch. This ham fisted version of his story is horrendously unwatchable.  If you thought Dreamcatcher was bad, you're in for a dour surprise. This is the most inane and awkwardly horrendous film in the entire catalog of King adaptations. 

john cusack
Wait over there guys. I think my career is under that car. 

John Cusack and Samuel L Jackson star in the new thriller/horror film. Based on the story by Stephen King, Cell is an apocalyptic journey that melds the tired, brain dead zombie trend with a modern technology based story about two men trying to survive the end of the world as we know it. When a signal goes out across the cell phone spectrum, people become enraged and begin violently eating each other, beating each other, and commit vile acts to themselves. Starting off with a scene ripped right from the animated feature, Resident Evil Degeneration, the first few minutes are absolutely horrifying as the always trenchcoated John Cusack tries to escape the horror unraveling around him. Viewers will be sadly shocked how quickly the quality of the movie goes from bad to worse. 

Cell mixes the survivalist elements of I Am Legend, 28 Days Later, Pulse and The Signal (2007) all into a feature that really doesn't give its talented cast much to do. Wandering from one destination to the next (i.e. The Road), Cusack and Jackson are simply beyond the material presented to them. They both feel bored and uninspired with the lackadaisical scripting. You can feel the desperation in their performances as the desolate writing matches the crumbling civilization that encompasses them. Ripping off too many themes from other zombie flicks and apocalyptic road trip movies, this is a sad sack of a feature that has nothing new to say. 

john cusack
Here lies the corpses of all the people that sat through Cell. 

It's hard to say why bigger lead actors are taking roles in these movies lately. These low budget features are doing them no favors. Cusack and Jackson belong nowhere near this thing. With an ending that makes no sense, editing that looks like it was done by a five year old, and no solid execution of plot, Cell sits atop the mountain of filmed excrement that defines the King movie catalog. Other than a few good movies like The Shining, Pet Sematary, Christine, and Carrie, most others have been less than acceptable. And Cell is easily the worst. 

Cell is currently in limited run theaters and on demand streaming services. 

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