The Signal (2007)

As slutty Mia awakes in her boyfriend’s bed, she then realizes she needs to get home to her husband (told you she was a slut) before he gets suspicious.  She discovers that there is a strange static on the phone as well as a weird broadcast on all the tv channels, but really doesn’t think anything of it.  As she gets home, she finds her husband, Lewis, and his friends messing with their tv trying to get rid of the hypnotic static that is on their tv as well.  Suddenly her husband, Lewis, gets all upset at one of his buddies for no reason and attacks him with a bat.  Mia freaks out and runs into the hallway to find the other tenants of her building going batshit crazy too, screaming at each other or brandishing weapons.  She is almost killed twice before she hides in a neighbors apartment.

As morning comes she sneaks into her pad to find Lewis duct taped to a chair, but she grabs her keys and leaves him there.  She soon sees the aftermath of the previous night as the halls and streets are littered with bodies and blood.  She drives off in search of her boyfriend, who is actually at her place looking for her. She crashed her car in-route to the terminal where her boyfriend said they would meet that day, and a man who doesn’t appear to be crazy offers her help. She walks off on her own, but now we are introduced to this guy – Clark.

Clark knows some weird shit is going down, and goes around his neighborhood looking to help people.  He finds a lady who has just killed her husband in self-defence, but she is in shock and tries to get the house ready for a party they are having that night, despite the bloody corpse in the middle of the floor.  Lewis shows up at the door after finding Mia’s car outside and appears not quite as crazy as before, so the trio sit down to plan an escape.  A few guests show up to the party, but Lewis flips and kills them all, assuming they are crazy, and soon the homeowner succumbs to the effects of the signal as well.  Just as Clark is about to be done in by Lewis, Mia’s boyfriend shows up and escapes with Clark. The boyfriend was kidnapped by Lewis and put in the back of his van, there are all sorts of confusing flashbacks you see after something crazy like this happens.  The boyfriend and Clark are off to the terminal to find Mia, but Lewis is in hot pursuit as well.  How does this all play out?  Who is or isn’t infected with the signal? Is wearing a tin foil hat going to keep Clark sane?  You might have to watch and see for yourself.

Alex’s Thoughts:  While I really enjoyed this movie, I will say that the way that it switched gears from a horror movie, to a dark comedy and then back to some sort of dramatic thriller was sort of off-putting.  It is clear that three different people directed the three acts, but their styles were just too different to create a movie that had a good flow.  I thought the middle part at the party was really funny and was my favorite act by far, but it just didn’t fit with the other two.  That might be a play on the ‘condition’ everyone was suffering, where they changed moods all the time; but it made me not take the final act as seriously as I probably should have.  The ending was a little ambiguous because now you can’t really tell what’s real and what the crazies believe is real.  All in all I think most people would enjoy this, but you really have to pay attention throughout the entire thing. Alex Rates This Movie 7/10

Tim’s Thoughts: I hate the first few minutes of this movie and was relieved to see that this was just a misdirect, only to find out that virtually the entire movie is one big fake out. The first act has some really creepy and tense moments, only to lead into a goofy and darkly funny second part. This would be the time where a good movie would establish some rules, as in who is affected why, maybe even distinguish between the different types of psychos that are roaming around. We don’t get that, instead a conveniently placed scientist/landlord shows up and sort of explains stuff, but no one seems to care. They are all fixated on Mia, and while she’s pretty, this doesn’t really fly. Move on to a dark and depressing third act in which nothing is explained or even understood. The concept reminded me of Stephen King’s The Cell, and just like the book, this ending is extremely unsatisfying and considering all we sat through, I felt like I deserved more. I would like to see an entire movie from the director of the second act, and maybe a horror film from the first director, but give him a budget, because there is some awful CG effects at the end of the first section. I know that some people will like this, but not me. Tim Rates This Movie 4/10

“I can’t wait to find a slut, so that I can pee in her butt.  You know what I’m saying”

View the IMDB entry for this movie here or add it to your Netflix queue