Back in 1974 a stranger called, then in 1993 a stranger called back. Don’t worry he called somebody different this time. A Stranger Calls Back is a 1993 made for Showtime film that has Carol Kane and Charles Durning returning from the first film, along with Fred Walton directing this sequel.
When a Stranger Calls Back stars Jill Schoelan as Julie Jenz. When the film begins she is babysitting for two young kids. She gets a knock on the door from a man saying his car has broken down and he would like to use the phone. She’s doesn’t let him in and says she will call for him. Unfortunately the phone is dead, but she’s not going to let this guy know so she just tells him the mechanic is on the way. Of course as she didn’t actually call no one comes and the stranger starts becoming a bit more aggressive in his nature. As Julie is avoiding this guy she starts to find tings are being moved around. She finally puts two and two together and realizes he is coming and going from the house. He finally just comes to get her but she manages to get away, problem is the two kids she was babysitting are gone.
We flash forward about 5 years and Julie is now attending college. She’s still traumatized by everything that happened to her and has become pretty much a loner. She lives by herself and one day starts to notice things being moved around in her apartment. It begins to really freak her out as she thinks that the man who stalked her and kidnapped the children she was babysitting has come back to get her.. Luckily for her Jill Johnson (Carole Cane from the first film) is now a counselor at the college and when Julie tells her what’s going on she contacts John Clifford (Charles Durning from the first film) to help catch the person responsible for stalking Jill.
This film is quiet a bit different from the first one. Sure it has the same premise but this new stalker can throw his voice, and even paint himself to blend into the rooms of the apartment when he’s in full stalking mode. As silly as it sounds on paper it actually plays off very well. The suspense in this one is actually very good, and it offers quiet a few jump scares especially during the final act. Even though this one doesn’t get near as much love as the first its still a great film. The pacing is tighter in the one as things unfold at a much more frantic pace. The acting is strong by all involved and bringing back our two main characters from the first added a great touch.
The film was given a really bad DVD release years back, but now Scream Factory has stepped in and they are giving this one a fine Blu-ray transfer. The film looks great. All the dark colors look crisp and clear, with never much of that dreaded blue tint to them. The audio was amazing, this is one loud film when its playing in surround sound. And as its Scream Factory its got an ample amount of special features
· NEW 2019 2K Scan Of The Original Film Elements – In Two Aspect Ratios – 1.33:1 (Original TV Broadcast) And An Alternate 1.78:1 Version
· NEW Directing A Stranger – An Interview With Director Fred Walton
· NEW Process Is Everything – An Interview With Actress Carol Kane
· NEW A Stranger’s Prey – An Interview With Actress Jill Schoelen
· Fred Walton’s Original Short Film The Sitter
· TV Spot
Fans of the original as well as fans of good old fashioned suspense based horror will enjoy this one. Its another great addition to the Scream Factory library, and it’s definitely one to add to your collection.
Overall 3 out of 5 Stars!