Updated: March 19, 2021 16:26 IST
Rating : 3.5/5
As the title states, Calls on Apple TV+ is a show that unfolds its drama through phone conversations and only abstract visuals. Directed by Fede Alvarez, the short series of 9 episodes with a run time of 13-21 minutes tackles several genres ranging from sci-fi to horror. Each of the episodes is a stand-alone story but can be viewed as an ensemble series. Each episode uncovers a dark mystery that unfolds as the characters receive unexpected calls.
The star-studded cast includes actors like Nick Jonas, Pedro Pascal, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Rosario Dawson, Lily Collins, and Aubrey Plaza. As Calls relies on only the audio, the voice performance of the actors is pivotal. In this aspect, the stellar cast showcases their abilities such as voice modulations, projecting emotion through voice perfectly. Such abilities may go unnoticed when we're watching a normal series or rather might not be the focus in most shows. This show perfectly showcases the ability of the star-studded cast. The whole cast delivers a stellar performance as the intensity of each story gradually. The eeriness, intensity and emotions are on point!
The best part about the show is the experience of it all. It's indeed a one of a kind series. The audio builds an atmosphere of fear and frustration that eventually concludes a short span of time. Interpretation is essentially left to the viewer. By listening to the audio and looking at the abstract visuals, the view can piece together the story. In doing, so it opens up a wide array of interpretation and keeps the viewer engrossed. The viewer has to constantly engage to have a wholesome experience. As the series is short, it doesn't feel tiresome at all. The experience is neither draggy nor rushed; it wraps up satisfactorily. One can experience the entire series as an ensemble piece or individual stories depending on the viewer's interpretation. The mode of presentation essentially creates a sense of anxiety as the viewer is listening in on a phone conversation. In crucial points, minimal visuals can have a great impact when it's just a line or a colour. This anxiety is crucial, short-lived and helps the wrap up with a sense of AH!
Not much seems to be lacking in this short series. The format of storytelling is a boon and a bane. While the format is an experience in the first few episodes, it gets a little repetitive once the viewer gets a hang of it.
All in all, Calls is an exciting, daunting and thrilling experience. Calls is a perfect example of a show you can binge-watch in a couple of hours and think about for a couple of days. If you're looking for an immersive experience, Calls is the show for you. Since it is one of its kinds, you should totally give it a shot!