The Missing is a film I was hesitant in seeing. It is not a film I would normally see since I am not really a fan of westerns. The only western films that I care about are the remake of True Grit and Cowboys and Aliens (I count it as a western). The old west is not really a time period that I am that interested in. However, when I saw that this would have Tommy Lee Jones in it I decided to give it a try. I also like the story, which is not your typical story for a western and neither are the characters. I saw the film and, to be honest, I found the film a bit weak. I do not really know who this is for. This film is not a typical western. This film does not follow a cowboy or a band of cowboys, but focuses on the Indian side of things. The main characters are a female and a fake Indian. The film is also not that action packed, but more of a drama. The film does not have much for romance either. Even fans of westerns may be put off by this. Plus most of the cast is not that interesting.
The Missing is about a woman named Maggie (Cate Blanchett) who lives with her two daughters Dot and Lily. She also lives with a man named Brake (Aaron Eckhart) who helps support the family. One night her father, Samuel Jones (Tommy Lee Jones) comes back into her life to offer her money. Maggie hates her father because he left her a long time ago. Eventually Brake, Dot, and Lily leave to go to the city and are attacked by rogue Apache Indians and kidnap Lily. Then Maggie, her father, and the younger daughter, Dot, track the Apache down to get Lily back.
What saves this film from being bad are the two leads. You have the female lead Maggie (Cate Blanchett) and her father Samuel Jones (Tommy Lee Jones). Maggie is definitely a tough female lead that you do not see in a lot of westerns. You also have Tommy Lee Jones playing the father and he is great. Tommy Lee Jones is great in anything he plays even if the movie is bad. He is one of my favorite actors and is the best aspect of this film. I like the father-daughter relationship they have going on. Most people will not like this, but I like that there is no romance in this film. There is a little at the beginning with Aaron Eckhart' character, but not much overall. This film is about Maggie and her father coming to terms with each other, which I personally find more interesting.
The film does have problems. For one I do not like that Aaron Eckhart's character gets killed so early in the film. I like Aaron Eckhart as an actor. I know this was before he was a big name, but I did not care for it. I thought it was a waste of a talented actor. Also, the little girl, Dot, I found to be useless. The film is about the relationship between Maggie and her father. Dot seemed she was just along for the ride. She did not contribute much. The film could have been done without her.
Another problem is that aside from the two leads there are no interesting characters. The little girl, Dot, was not that interesting. The other daughter I did not care for either. I felt like I barely got to know her. Before she got captured the only thing we know about her is that she does not like the country life and wants to move to the city. In most of her scenes in the beginning she is just whining. Aaron Eckhart's character we knew little about. How did he come to meet with Maggie? Before we get to know him he dies. We also come across and Indian and his son who are friends with Maggie's father, who are not interesting either. We really know nothing about these two.
Also, the villain is rather lame. He is just a typical bad guy with no depth at all. He is not interesting at all. I personally thought that this was going to be more of a mystery story set in the old west. I thought it would be Maggie and her father trying to find out who kidnapped her daughter and track him down and not show the villain until near the end. However, it turns out to be just a chase movie and it is not that interesting.
Overall, The Missing is not a film that I would see again soon. I am not a fan of westerns, but I also just do not like the story or most of the character. The two main characters are what save the film for me especially Tommy Lee Jones. I liked the father-daughter relationship going on.