Halle Berry in The Call: the latest in a great tradition of kidnap thrillers

Brad Anderson's rollercoaster ride is a lean, taut, brilliant B-movie

The Call is a welcome little late summer treat, a juiced-up B-movie kidnap thriller from regular Fringe director Brad Anderson, admirably succinct at 87 minutes, constructed around the conversations between an abducted girl (Abigail Breslin) and the responder (Halle Berry), who picks up when the girl calls 911 from the trunk of the kidnapper's car. It's a machine designed to thrill, please and satisfy; a one-sentence pitch – 911 responder breaks rule No 1, and gets emotionally involved – deftly realised, manipulative and clever enough to be irresistible. Add an ending that's midnight-black, morally, yet somehow just right, and it's the kind of throwaway thriller that could only be improved by seeing it in a nighttime drive-in with a date, some reefer and a fifth of Old Harper. Pure guilty pleasure.

The set-up is simple. Six months earlier, Berry botches a 911 call – promises her first abductee she'll get her home,

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