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The vanishing

Threat advisory: Guarded - General risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

A riveting, tension-filled, psychological thriller about a young woman (Sandra Bullock) who mysteriously disappears without a word, a trace, or a reason.

Starring Jeff Bridges, Kiefer Sutherland as Jeff.

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Oooh, and it makes you wonder.

Just who is it in Hollywoodland that makes the decisions that get second rate movies made? 170 films every year, and how many are worth watching? How many go straight to video because they were so... second rate? How many are never even released? How could so many film people (directors, actors, agents, studio executives, producers, executive producers, executive co-producers) read a script and not wonder what they were doing? Are they so desperate for a hit that they will produce films that are only remotely worth making just on the off-chance that they might just have found the big one? Things that make you go h minutes.

Enough reviewer's angst. Let's talk about The vanishing. Good premise: girl disappears, boyfriend obsesses about finding her. Doesn't quite live up to expectations, though, and the psychological thriller turns into a bad guy with an even worse accent running around in the bush being indestructible. I think they may have shot this one on the same location as Friday the 13th, which says something, doesn't it? Oh, the story rolls along, but you are never sure who it's about (the victim, the boyfriend, the new girlfriend or the killer) which is not a good idea for psychological thrillers, in my humble opinion.

Jeff Bridges has the most bizarre accent and I have absolutely no idea why. The character has a nondescript name, he was raised in America, and everyone else has American accents. Go figure. There is also a huge continuity error between the kidnapping scene and the retelling of the kidnapping scene. I know it is an error because I am a continuity bastard and if it was supposed to be a clue as to the unbalanced mind of the bad guy then why was it glossed over rather than highlighted so that we would remember it? Hah, I win again.

This is one of those films that you'll take out by accident while you're in a hurry to choose something because all the best ones have already gone. Just make sure you don't pay for it as a new release and you won't be all that disappointed.

Security censorship classification

M (Medium level violence, coarse language)

Surveillance time

105 minutes (1:45 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

VHS rental: 10 September 1997
DVD rental: 15 May 2002
DVD retail: 10 July 2002

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The vanishing image

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