The Vanishing (1988)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBBBB

Original title:  Spoorloos

The Netherlands/France, 1988.  Argos Films, Co-Productiefonds Binnenlandse Omroep, Golden Egg, Ingrid Productions, MGS Film, Movie Visions, Stichting Produktiefonds voor Nederlandse Films, Televisie Radio Omroep Stichting.  Screenplay by , Adaptation by George Sluizer, based on the novel The Golden Egg by Tim Krabbe.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , George Sluizer.  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by , George Sluizer. 

George Sluizer fashions a gripping tale about a regular, average couple who break their long highway journey at a rest-stop in order for the young woman () to run in and get herself a drink. When she doesn’t come out after an unreasonable length of time, her boyfriend gets worried and goes looking for her. Having vanished without a trace, the man sets out to find out what happened to her, until he receives messages from a madman that promise information about her whereabouts. A perfectly directed, perfectly chilling portrait of insanity, it was undermined by a much more ‘accessible’ American version, also directed by Sluizer.

The Criterion Collection:  #133

European Film Award:  Best European Supporting Actress (Johanna ter Steege)

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