The Signal (2007)


Take a quick look around you. How much technology is around? Televisions, radios, phones. Imagine they were all somehow able to emit a signal, a frequency, a code that would control the minds of those around. Would anyone be immune?

The Signal is a horror movie split into three distinct acts, known as "transmissions". The first introduces us to the main characters, and shows the initial occurrence of the "signal" and the resulting madness that spreads across the population. People go crazy and lash out in violent, murderous ways towards anyone they encounter.

The second eases up a bit on the terror and slips into a more absurd comedy route. The "signal" is shown to cause hallucinations, and we meet a few people who have somehow survived and are unaffected. The third act focuses on the heroine's attempt to escape the city and get to safety with her love.

Each act has a distinct and unique vision. I didn't learn til after viewing that each was actually written and directed by a different person. Three friends got together, agreed on one main theme, then each took one-third of the movie to express the story in their own way.

There is also an element of psychological thriller, in that we aren't exactly sure who was affected by the signal and who wasn't. Those who are affected don't know it, they think their actions are normal and acceptable. The point of view changes a few times to highlight how some characters may initially seem harmless but turn out to be much worse.



On the [Celluloid Hero] scale, "The Signal" gets a 7 out of 10.

[Each week, Varacchi explores cinema from his own perspective. From indie to foreign to mainstream, he'll watch it all. Suggestions and recommendations are welcome, leave a comment below. CLICK HERE for the Celluloid Hero archives]