|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:|
|Original title:||The Signal|
|Genre:||Mystery, Sci-Fi, Thriller|
|Production country:||USA 2014|
|Running time:||Ca. 97 min.|
|Rated:||From 16 years|
The two computer freaks Nic (Brenton Thwaites) and Jonah (Beau Knapp) just can't let their passion rest. Although they are actually travelling across the southwest of the USA with Nic's girlfriend Haley (Olivia Cooke) to help the girl move, the college students use the trip to track down a mysterious hacker rival who calls himself Nomad. Its signal, which Nic and Jonah have tracked down, seems to be sent from a location not far from their planned route. Despite some reservations, the trio decides to take a detour and believes they have found shelter in an abandoned house. But then the chaos breaks over her and when Nic suddenly regains consciousness in a research laboratory, a nightmare of undreamt-of proportions…
To tell you more about the story of "The Signal" would make the fun of this original mystery thriller much less. Director William Eubank steers his movie several times into completely unexpected directions, which especially in the first half leads to an extremely high level of tension. Some genre connoisseurs will be able to guess in time in which direction the whole thing will go. Nevertheless, the actual resolution at the end can surprise in a certain way. However, you have to be aware that Eubank enriches his story with many cryptic moments and at the end he leaves it up to the audience to put together their own explanation for the story from all the pieces of the puzzle he has delivered scattered all over the movie.
The fact that he hardly provides clear answers and that much remains hidden can give the impression that the story is so confused that Eubank has lost himself in it and only shows some scenes because they are visually particularly exciting. So you should definitely have a soft spot for challenging SciFi/Mystery food and cineastic puzzles to enjoy "The Signal". The film, which uses the visual aesthetics of Stanley Kubrick and then the confused thoughts of David Lynch, is not as ingenious as the models from which it was obviously inspired. But he perfectly understands how to build up a fascinating atmosphere, from which one is extremely captured especially in the moments in which so many question drawings rise above the heads of the audience and which one can no longer shake off so easily.
No matter whether you can get anything out of the story and the staging, William Eubank must be credited in any case with having been able, in times in which most films of this genre are characterized by the motto "faster and faster, louder and louder", to make a film about the genre. in which there are almost only sequels or remakes left and in which pacing and special effects too often dominate every form of story, has tried to create something very unique and original, which doesn't necessarily have to submit to the taste of the masses. And that alone makes "The Signal" a very special film.
Surely such ambitions and the fascinating visual language don't make a good film. But these aspects should be reason enough to give this work a chance. If you manage to open your mind a bit and get involved in the cryptic narrative, you really get a very special SciFi experience, which has what it takes to become a little cult movie. But if you prefer a clear structure and a lot of tempo and clearly recognizable logic, you might want to switch off this signal very quickly. Nevertheless there is a convinced one of me despite certain reservations: Absolutely worth seeing!
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp