Call Girl - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Call Girl Reviews

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August 31, 2016
Stylish drama with an excellent emphasis on its 1970's setting in terms of look, sets, costume and hairstyles. Despite the fast editing throughout, the plot is worked through at a very pedestrian pace.
½ January 31, 2016
Long-winding, loose, unfocused & stray.
½ October 31, 2014
I got so bored. ONe ould have cut easily 45 minutes off the film and still get the same boring result. Maybe this film said something to the swedes, but if you did not know anything about the specific "bordellhärvan", well... you just got bored.
½ July 9, 2014
Long , but not boring ...interesting caracters , maybe i was better born in the early 60's or sooner !
½ March 13, 2014
Finely crafted film with natural performances, has a great feel for the era and an uneasy atmosphere.
January 24, 2014
Set against the backdrop of the 1976 election in Sweden, the story is centred around delinquent teenager Iris (Sofia Karemyr), who is sent to live in a juvenile home. She meets her cousin Sonja (Josefin Asplund) there and the two regularly slip away for adventures in the city centre of Stockholm. Together they are recruited to the prostitution ring operated by Dagmar Glans (Pernilla August), a madam well-known to the authorities. Dagmar's clients are mostly rich and powerful men, including senior politicians of the day. She becomes the subject of a police investigation lead by a young vice officer, John Sandberg (Simon J. Berger). Sandberg soon discovers Glans has powerful clients but also finds his investigation hampered by his superiors and his life threatened by sinister figures...

The story is a fictionalised version of events based on the so-called "Bordellhärvan" political scandal of 1970's Sweden which linked several prominent politicians to a prostitution ring that included underage girls. Mikael Marcimain has managed to recreate the 70s down to details and that is the strength of the movie in combination with a good script and good acting from all involved. "Call Girl" is an ensemble film with known names such as Pernilla August, Magnus Krepper, David Dencik, Simon J. Berger, Ruth Vega Fernandez and Jennie Silverhjelm. However, it´s Sofia Karemyr and Josefin Asplund that really stands out portraying two girls with a need for love and a home. The undertones and general vibe creates a shady and depressing environment, and the storyline feels as current as ever unfortunately. I do like the whole "Watergate"ish conspiracy tone and the darkness presented. I firmly believe that these sort of stories is far more important to be told on the silver screen compared to something lighter or easier. "Call Girl" is a needed movie and the consequences we see needs to be addressed over and over.
½ October 20, 2013
A dark Scandinavian noir supposedly based on a covered-up corruption scandal in mid-seventies Sweden. Well acted but a little too indirect and confusing at times.
August 18, 2013
the grubby, smokey and very sinister side of 70's Stockholm brilliantly captured in Call Girl, Abba playing as liberal politicians misused their power and abused young girls then murdered their own police
Super Reviewer
½ August 14, 2013
Stockholm, Sweden, the mid-seventies. 14-year-old Iris (Karemyr) is checked into a home for troubled teens after repeatedly causing trouble for her single-parent mother. There she meets her cousin, Sonja (Asplund), and the two begin sneaking out of the home at every opportunity. On one such trip the pair are introduced to Dagmar (August), a "Madame" who oversees a high class prostitution ring. Tempting the girls with wads of cash, Dagmar recruits Iris and Sonja. Among their rich clients are several prominent Swedish politicians who are being secretly investigated by the police.

'Call Girl' purports to be loosely based on real events that transpired in the ultra-liberal Sweden of the seventies. I'm no expert on Swedish history but the little I've read on the matter seems to completely discredit the content of Marcimain's film. Given the current global craze for Scandinavian crime thrillers, be they in the form of novels, movies or TV shows, I suspect Marcimain and his producers saw this disputed piece of history as a very marketable topic. Like Stieg Larsson's 'Dragon Tattoo' trilogy, 'Call Girl' exposes a dark piece of Scandinavian history. While Larsson's work concentrated on Sweden's Nazi-collaborating past, Marcimain turns his attention to the perceived follies of the tolerant Swedish society so many liberals envy.
The film has a gripping trailer, evoking the great conspiracy thrillers of seventies Hollywood. Unfortunately the film itself plays much like a trailer, and a trailer for a film Marcimain doesn't seem all too interested in making, at that. Despite running for well over two hours, there's no meat on the bones of this story. Part of the problem is obviously down to the film being based on incidents that nobody can prove ever happened. Marcimain would have been better served by distancing himself from the purported "true" events and make a "fake true story" ala Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Boogie Nights' or 'The Master'. The director's style is indeed reminiscent of Anderson but, unfortunately, it's early, immature Anderson. 'Call Girl' feels like a bunch of what its creator considers "great moments", but they don't tie together into a cohesive whole.
The film looks and sounds great. Seventies techniques, in particular the use of zoom lens, are employed to add to the period feel, and the costumes are exceptionally authentic. Mattias Barjed's score sounds fantastic, its throbbing synths reminiscent of John Carpenter, but feels out of place here and becomes distracting in many scenes.
August is great, and very creepy, as the female pimp, as is Karemyr in the lead but Marcimain never lets the story settle long enough to fully explore any of these characters. The police investigation is given so much short shrift that the film would probably have profited from its exclusion.
There's an interesting story here but it's one that likely requires a more mature film-maker than Marcimain to tell it.
½ August 4, 2013
Svenskene kan lage film, makt og korrupsjon....
July 15, 2013
Incredibly well done, it's important and real and it feels like you are right there.
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