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The Signal (2014)

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On a road trip, Nic and two friends are drawn to an isolated area by a computer genius. When everything suddenly goes dark, Nic regains consciousness - only to find himself in a waking nightmare.

Director:

William Eubank
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4,252 ( 99)
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Patrick Davidson Patrick Davidson ... Boy Playing Claw Game
Brenton Thwaites ... Nic
Olivia Cooke ... Haley
Beau Knapp ... Jonah
Jeffrey Grover ... Gas Station Clerk
Laurence Fishburne ... Damon
Roy Kenny Roy Kenny ... Hazmat 1
Timothy Holmes Timothy Holmes ... Hazmat 2
Ricardo Campos Ricardo Campos ... Hazmat 3
Drew Sykes Drew Sykes ... Hazmat 4
Lin Shaye ... Mirabelle
Robert Longstreet ... James
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Storyline

On a road trip, Nic and two friends are drawn to an isolated area by a computer genius. When everything suddenly goes dark, Nic regains consciousness - only to find himself in a waking nightmare.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements, violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 July 2014 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Сигнал See more »

Filming Locations:

New Mexico, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$155,642, 13 September 2014

Gross USA:

$600,896
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Early in the movie, while in a motel room, an old b&w movie is playing. It's 1959s Teenagers From Outer Space. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the film, when Nic helps the little boy with the claw game, there is clearly coffee all over his white T-shirt. Later, at the hotel, there's no stain on that shirt. The next day he spills coffee on himself, creating the stain. See more »

Quotes

Jonah: They're testing us, Nic. Like little rats.
See more »

Soundtracks

La villa dei delitti
Performed by Gabriele Bazzi Berneri
Written by Gabriele Bazzi Berneri
Courtesy of Crucial Music Corporation
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Visually arresting, methodically paced, and almost perfectly executed.
12 June 2014 | by BrentHankinsSee all my reviews

In an age where astronomical budgets and A-list stars dominate the sci-fi genre, it's seldom that you stumble across a film that strives to present a unique vision, which is precisely why The Signal is such a breath of fresh air. Directed by Will Eubank (who co-wrote the screenplay), the film follows a trio of MIT students on a cross-country trip, who decide to take a detour in order to track down and expose a malicious hacker.

Arriving at their destination, Nic (Brenton Thwaites) and Jonah (Beau Knapp) find nothing but an abandoned, dilapidated structure. Haley (Olivia Cooke) elects to stay behind as the guys explore the grounds, and just as they stumble across evidence that they're on the right track, all hell breaks loose.

Sometime later, Nic awakens with no memory of the previous events and finds himself trapped in a sterile, hospital-like facility, with Haley in a coma and Jonah held in an adjacent cell. His only point of contact is Damon (Laurence Fishburne), the facility's mysterious administrator, who dons a Hazmat suit for every interaction. Damon wants to know everything about "the signal" - how Nic found it, when he first discovered it - but Nic's only concern is getting himself and his companions to safety.

It's nearly impossible to reveal anything more about the plot without wandering into spoiler territory, but rest assured that The Signal does a spectacular job of approaching familiar sci-fi tropes from a completely different perspective. Eubank spent eight years as a cinematographer, and his experience behind the camera combined with his indie-film sensibilities allow him to get a tremendous amount of mileage out of The Signal's $4 million budget.

The pacing is slow and methodical, doling out information in carefully measured doses before opening the floodgates during the film's climax. There are some truly breathtaking visuals here, particularly during the third act, with one jaw-dropping shot after another building toward a startling mindfuck of a conclusion. If you're tired of seeing Hollywood continually rehashing the same boring sci-fi stories with new faces and bigger budgets, then track down The Signal and buy yourself a ticket. You won't be sorry.

-- Brent Hankins


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