A to Z Challenge – The Vanishing

Vanishing - Poster.jpgThe Vanishing


Directed by George Sluizer

Quick Synopsis… After his girlfriend mysteriously disappears at a rest stop, Jeff embarks on an obsessive three-year quest to learn what happened to her. A man approaches with information, but he requires for Jeff to relive what his girlfriend experienced.

  • Y’all… This movie is just about impossible to find.
  • There are several movies with this title…
  • This one just happens to be a remake of a French-Dutch film of the same name that was originally released in 1988.
  • The director, George Sluizer, made both versions.
  • The English version (this one) was apparently not as well received as the original foreign language version.
  • But this is the version I know, so this is the version I want to watch.
  • And I cannot find it!
  • Okay, that’s not 100% true…
  • It’s not available to stream on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime (not even if you pay for it).
  • Netflix doesn’t even have the disc to send in the mail.
  • I checked with two separate library districts in my area, neither have this movie in their circulation.
  • I was able to find it uploaded to YouTube… but it’s slightly distorted.
  • I guess you get around copyright laws if you shrink the actual movie to about a third of the screen size and throw in some colorful motion graphic for a background and increase the audio’s pitch so that everyone sounds like they’re on helium.
  • I can’t enjoy the movie like this. It’s annoying…
  • Like I said, the movie wasn’t very well received, but I always enjoyed it when I was a kid.
  • We’ve got a pre-“The Dude” Jeff Bridges in, arguably, his creepiest role ever.
  • He plays Barney Cousins, a chemistry professor who is obsessed with finding out whether or not he can successfully kidnap and murder a young woman.
  • Meanwhile, Jeff (Kiefer Sutherland) and Diane (Sandra Bullock) are on vacation together when Diane vanishes from a gas station.
  • Three years later, Jeff is still obsessed with finding Diane, even though he’s now dating Rita (Nancy Travis).
  • He’s hiding his continued search from her, fearing she wouldn’t understand that the obsession is about finding out the truth. Not knowing is driving him insane.
  • Barney did it. He pulled off the perfect abduction/murder.
  • The only reason Jeff learns more about Diane’s disappearance is because Barney baits him by sending a letter, inviting him to meet so Barney can divulge the truth of everything that happened.
  • Barney’s catch is that, in order for Jeff to find out what happened to Diane, he has to experience everything as she did.
  • This leads to Jeff being drugged to the point of unconsciousness and buried alive.
  • From what I understand, that’s where the original Dutch-French film ended.
  • I guess they didn’t think the Americans could handle such a dismal ending.
  • So they had Rita come along and save the day.
  • I really do like this movie and, if I can ever get my hands on a legit copy of it, I’d like to see it again.
  • This YouTube thing just isn’t working for me.

So that’s The Vanishing. Have you seen either version of this suspenseful thriller? What did you think? Come back tomorrow for our W day. It’s a fairly family friendly movie from the same director that gave us Jerry Maguire and Elizabethtown. And while it’s not in my top 100, it’s one that I could watch on repeat for some reason… not sure what it is about it.


Click here to check out how other folks are tackling this year’s A to Z Challenge!

2 thoughts on “A to Z Challenge – The Vanishing

  1. I love this movie and I just saw a youtube show about movies where evil wins and this was on the list. Not many people know this movie but I remember it because it used to always be on for the movie of the week on The WB before I had cable but it’s a great one. Good choice!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: A to Z Challenge – Reflection | The Confusing Middle

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