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Answer Your Phone

average rating is 4 out of 5


Jason Knight


Posted on:

Jan 4, 2024

Film Reviews
Answer Your Phone
Directed by:
Benji Wragg
Written by:
Benji Wragg
Oliver Midson

A young man is being pursued by something sinister, while someone is attempting to contact him via his mobile phone.


This spooky and tense short horror film from Australia tells a story that follows the concept of a person being stalked by a menacing force. It is night-time and an unnamed youth (Midson) is walking home. He enters a deserted car park and begins to feel uneasy. He also receives texts from someone named Nancy (apparently his partner), who wants to know his whereabouts. The man repeatedly looks around him, as if he believes that someone (or something) is after him. As Nancy tries calling him, he proceeds to run home, however will he be safe there?


This short horror film wastes no time in announcing that this is going to be a scary experience, with the opening letters that make up the title being red and stylised and accompanied by a sinister score. And the tension and suspense remain firm during the five-minute duration, with the viewer wondering what the protagonist is running from (if he is running from anything). And that is an interesting thing here because the screenplay does not make it clear whether the hero is actually being targeted by some entity or if it is all just in his head. He never speaks and his frantic behaviour gives the impression that he is terrified that something bad will happen to him. Furthermore, no entity of any kind is seen, making it seem that it is the messages and missed calls that are troubling him.


Interestingly, since his mobile phone appears to be menacing him, this film could also be viewed as a commentary about how mobile phones have profoundly become part of people's lives today, how callers always expect the other person to answer them and the main character could be considered a victim who is desperately trying to break free from this psychological prison.


Going to the technical now, the ominous and tense music mentioned above is a great plus and contributes significantly in developing the right atmosphere thanks to the efforts by Drew Handcock. Also regarding the audio, the song Despair by In Vanity was a great choice to close the film with. The creativity involving the camerawork and editing deserves commendations, with the filmmakers utilising camera techniques that include shaky P.O.V. cam, arc shot and Scott David Lister's editing that makes a very effective fast cutting sequence. And all of these filmmaking techniques are supported by Darby Maxwell's moody cinematography.


This is a frightening psychological horror short that has quite an effect thanks to the suspenseful and dark atmosphere, Midson's performance and the music. By the way, the protagonist is wearing a top that has the word 'NOPE'. Would that be a reference to the 2022 sci-fi horror feature? It would be rather cool if that was the case.

About the Film Critic
Jason Knight
Jason Knight
Short Film, World Cinema
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