The Signal was one of those rare films that quite simply came in under the radar. With practically no promotion or marketing, bar its trailer, the film raised a “should I or shouldn’t I” question mark amongst moviegoers.
It had Laurence Fishburne and a pretty chilly cover, which gave way that it was pretty much a sci-fi thriller. But those two selling points aside, The Signal had a cast of unfamiliar faces and an unknown director in William Eubank, who most of us haven’t even heard off. But curiosity as they say killed the cat, hence this review.
The Story: The Signal opens with a trio of friends –Nic, Haley and Jonah who are on a road trip. But the film slowly introduces Nic and Jonah’s obsession with a hacker, who draws them to an isolated area. Thinking they’ve finally cornered their target, chaos soon ensues, which results in Nic waking up in a mysterious facility where he’s surrounded by men in hazmat suits. Clueless to as how he got there or the fate of his friends, you’re immediately drawn into Nic’s plight as he struggles to put together the pieces. And as he unravels the mystery, you’ll undoubtedly be left shocked as what transpires on screen.
What Didn’t: The Signal tries too hard to be smart with its storyline, which results in the film taking quite a few liberties with its audience. The question after question motif, gets tired after a while.
Plus Points: The revelation that there is more going on with the film then just a simple hacker and government cover-up. The somewhat unexpected, jaw-dropping ending.
Minus Points: Subplots that don’t add-up, and apparent holes in the film that come to light the moment the end credits start rolling.
Conclusion: Despite a promising start, The Signal takes itself a little too seriously and tries to be a bit too smart for its own good. The film though does have some redeeming qualities but overall it falters by attempting too many unnecessary and pointless subplots and sequences.