The Signal (2014)

(On Cable TV, February 2015)  Saying that The Signal has a Twist may itself be a spoiler in itself, but I think an essential one, because knowledge of a Twist may help is bridging the gap between a very slow and annoying beginning, and the more intriguing elements of its conclusion.  It is also a warning of sorts that the Twist is borderline-nonsensical, shining an unflattering light on the events of the film and diminishing it by way of an answer that doesn’t make any sense.  Along the way, though, there is an interesting mystery, Lawrence Fishburne in a somewhat villainous role, a Lin Shaye quasi-cameo, clever visuals on a limited budget and a big, big finale.  I’m certainly curious to see what’s next for Writer/director William Eubank.  Unfortunately, The Signal itself doesn’t make much sense.  (And reading the “Themes” section on the film’s Wikipedia page reveals more pretentiousness than clues.)  It’s all fine and well that science-fiction is attracting new filmmakers willing to play with spectacular ideas on limited budgets… but that’s not an excuse to forgo story logic and satisfying conclusions to a movie-long mystery.  Ah, if only the surface sheen of The Signal could have been matched by an appropriate depth…

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