Newest Review: ... to have a happy ending. Available for £5.81 on Amazon with English subtitles, the DVD includes a gallery of stills, directors filmogra... more
The greatest Dutch film of all time
The Vanishing aka Spoorloos (DVD)
Member Name: huggy2009
The Vanishing aka Spoorloos (DVD)
Advantages: Perfectly encapsulates the pessimism and claustrophobia of the book
Disadvantages: Subtitles if you don't get on with that type of thing
The Vanishing is based on a book (The Golden Egg) by Dutch journalist Tim Krabbe, which I have to say is one of the most mesmerising, dispiriting books I've ever read, it is an utterly stunning piece of work, so as with any reader who watches the film, I expected the worst. In its original title, the film is called Spoorloos.
Directed by George Sluizer this film tells a similar story, we begin with Rex Hofman (Gene Bervoets) a dutch man whose girlfriend Saskia (Johanna ter Steege) has disappeared at a petrol station in France while they are on a short holiday together.
Rex searches everywhere but can find no sign of her, he continues to hunt for her for years and launches missing person enquiries and allows his search to utterly take over his life and obsess him, he feels a mixture of responsibility, anger and curiosity as to how and why this could have happened.
Years later, as his new girlfriend finally gives up on him, Rex receives a call from a man who is prepared to tell him where Saskia is and what happened, but there is a catch which Rex must consider and decide what the most important thing in his life is.
Bernard-Pierre Donnadieu ... Raymond Lemorne
Gene Bervoets ... Rex Hofman
Johanna ter Steege ... Saskia Wagter
Gwen Eckhaus ... Lieneke
Bernadette Le Saché ... Simone Lemorne
Tania Latarjet ... Denise Lemorne
Lucille Glenn ... Gabrielle 'Gaby' Lemorne
Roger Souza ... Manager
Caroline Appéré ... Cashier
Pierre Forget ... Farmer Laurent
Didier Rousset ... TV Journalist
Raphaeline ... Gisele Marzin (as Raphaëline)
Robert Lucibello ... Teacher
David Bayle ... Lemorne (16 Years)
Doumee ... Lady 'Prisunic' (as Doumée)
I love this film, it is possibly the best known Dutch film ever and adheres to the ethics and processes of the book perfectly, it is in the end less about the disappearance of Saskia and moreabout Rex and his understanding of himself, his relationship with Saskia and his life. The film is shot in a style which is drab and honest and makes it all the more real because of it. The acting is excellent with Bervoets superb in the main role and everybody else is utterly believable too.
The film is a chilling suspense film and the music helps to build the mood perfectly to its devastating climax, its perfect in almost every way.
I found the conclusion as chilling as the book but it is the right ending and avoids any Hollywood desire to glamorise it. Although having said that the Director took the film to Hollywood and remade it, so I'll watch that and advise if this is of similar quality of even necessary at all.
Overall, forget the subtitles and read the book and watch this film they are utterly enthralling and this is a true 5 out of 5 film. I really hope the Kiefer Sutherland remake isn't a Hollywood version removing the typically European realism and pessimism and replacing it with a fake, smiley, happy ending. This is a film about two men with psychological disorders and a woman, it was never going to have a happy ending.
Available for £5.81 on Amazon with English subtitles, the DVD includes a gallery of stills, directors filmography and an amazing film.
Summary: An all time great thriller