Ralph Breaks the Internet
Mission: Impossible - Fallout
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All Critics (20)
| Top Critics (13)
| Fresh (10)
| Rotten (10)
| DVD (1)
Magic realism is a tricky thing to pull off in a movie, and Disappearances, the third of Mr. Craven's films based on Mr. Mosher's novels, only occasionally succeeds.
The beautifully photographed Disappearances is solidly old-fashioned entertainment.
The film is lovely to look at, but makes not a lick of sense.
If you're one of those people (like this reviewer) who can watch Kris Kristofferson do just about anything, you won't insist on the references being that solid.
Alas, the story descends into mystical mumbo jumbo.
Though set in Vermont in the 1930s, this has the feel of a Western -- one with mystical overtones -- and provides a great role for Kris Kristofferson, who's looking well weathered these days.
It's an ambitious work and shouldn't be too readily dismissed for its semi-successful foray into spirit-land. There is much else to enjoy and a wonderful terrain to discover.
There's a special Boy Scout charm to it all that I was enchanted with.
The movie has a literary quality, and not just because everyone's always quoting Shakespeare.
Labored, a bit of backwoods magical realism that wants to soar but never takes off.
Craven never quite manages to make it all seem a smoothly integrated piece.
Craven layers the film's central narrative concerns with mounds of metaphorical gunk, most of which proves more ponderous than entrancing.
Honestly, I only rented Disappearances because there were a bunch of old people on the DVD cover and the concept of a Western filled with senior citizens intrigued me. The film didn't really deliver on that, sadly, and what could have been Actual Country for Old Men instead was made into a generic spaghetti flick with a dash of magical realism for flair.
The best part of Disappearances by far is the teleporting aunt, because hell, it's a teleporting old woman who spouts off Shakespeare and shoots people. You can't miss the potential in that. Also, the film looks great; even though it was shot on the cheap (budgeted at 1.7 million dollars), the director does an admirable job using natural scenery to create atmosphere. Unfortunately, that's pretty much where the unique parts of Disappearances come to a halt. The plot is some hoary nonsense about smuggling whiskey that gets completely dropped in the last twenty minutes of the movie to make way for shit randomly disappearing and some ridiculous subplot about a curse. I guess these seemed like neat elements to include in a Western, but they just didn't fit here.
The kid gave probably one of the worst child performances I've ever seen. Every line he delivered took me straight out of the movie, which wasn't that hard in the first place because it's not particularly gripping. They should have just put teleporting lady in his place and the movie would have been ten times better. The rest of the acting isn't bad; I guess Kris Kristofferson is important or something, which is why he ends up doing movies like this, right?
I've stated in the past that you have to kiss a lot of frogs when you venture into the realm of independent films. With that said, I must admit that we've had a good run of late and seen some truly outstanding movies. That run came to a screeching halt with this flick and I take full responsibility for having chosen this dog. One has to imagine that it was very well received in whatever art house it played in, but went over with a thud in our house. The two star rating is for the cinematography, set design and with the exception of one particular character and his henchmen, for the costuming.
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