The Call: The ReviewPosted by: Shawn Got ten minutes to spare? Then you might as well check out the most entertaining tire commercial to date. The creators of Pirelli Tyres came up with an idea to create Pirellifilm: A company that would bring together some of the most talented directors and actors for the creation of short films that would be downloadable on the internet. The first such creation is "The Call" directed by Antoine Fuqua and starring John Malkovich and European starlett Naomi Campbell.
Taking place in Rome, "The Call" concerns one of the Vatican's top specialists on exorcism (Malkovich) receiving, of course, a phone call by a mysterious person. Taking off in the middle of the night, Malkovich's unnamed priest is dropped off at an abandoned warehouse where a frantic associate gives him a blessing. Past the iron door awaits a challenging and alluring demon (Campbell).
I was given the link to the movie, and did not at the time assume it would be a commercial for tires. As I watched the first half of the film I was convinced that it was a completely serious horror film starring one of my favorite actors, John Malkovich. After a while, as the camera seemed to linger on a few of the cars used just before the climax, I suddenly began to think "this HAS to be some kind of commercial." Sure enough inside the warehouse is another car. This one, a sexy black corvette, has been possessed by a demon and is out to kill the priest in any way it can. I won't ruin the ending on how Pirelli Tyres fit into the picture, but I'm sure you can all wager a good guess.
Commercial aside, it is an entertaining film none-the-less. It uses suspense well and tries not to become overly commercial as it plays out. There is little actual story to the film, but what would you expect for something only 10 minutes long? John Malkovich, as usual, makes an excellent dark and mysterious character (even when he plays a priest). Naomi Campbell is on screen for a collective total of about a minute, as the director uses fast motion shots of her, cut randomly into the film, to represent the demon that has possessed the car. It is effective enough. There is also a great use of fire in the film, as well a subtle (yet funny) joke concerning the application of holy water to a car.
So what does this all mean? Well it means that now that we have a successful 10 minute commercial (and not those hour long ones you see on cable stations at 3am), the idea is sure to become attractive to other product manufacturers who are willing to shell out millions of dollars to secure big name directors and actors as well as use top of the line special effects to try and tell a story that relates to their product of choice. So long as this endeavor remains a free service that I can download on-line, I have no qualms about it. If I have to start paying for this kind of entertainment, I'm going to consider just reading books from then on. It's going to put a whole new spin on "Product Placement".
Be sure to check out the film here and make your own opinions on this new style of entertainment. We at Movies Online are also offering a contest to win some great prize packs related to the film. Check out the details.