Apache Junction
The Missing
Review by Ross Anthony

In short, Southwest America, 1885, a tough rural doctor/healer (Blanchett) gets a visit from her long gone deadbeat dad (Lee Jones) on the same day that her daughter goes missing. The production notes call it a "starkly beautiful" picture and besides being an "action-filled suspense thriller," they say it's also a "powerful drama of love, forgiveness and redemption."

Initially, what interested me most were Tommy Lee-Jones (lead) and Ron Howard (directing). But, the picture disappointed me. I found it stark, but hardly beautiful. Though Tommy as the Indianized white man, and the perfectly cast daughter Dot (Jenna Boyd) are both strong, the film sounds very few emotionally-striking notes. And there is plenty of good opportunity for such emotion. Additionally, MISSING offers far less of an eerily supernaturalness than I'd expected. Lastly, I became frustrated with some sort of defeating blunder occurring every time a possible positive progression transpired.

That said, the film does deliver on the action/suspense thriller promise. And to be fair, this is a genre that doesn't particularly excite me, so I must admit a pre-disposed bias.

Howard says of Jones "Tommy Lee already had a vast knowledge of the old West and after studying for months with real Apache elders, for whom he showed the highest respect, be became fascinated with every detail of the culture. He was a champion of the Apache language, culture and psychology."

  • The Missing. Copyright © 2003. Rated R.
  • Starring Tommy Lee Jones, Cate Blanchett, Evan Rachel Wood, Jenna Bod, Aaron Eckhart.
  • Directed by Ron Howard.
  • Screenplay by Ken Kaufma, based on the novel "The Last Ride" by Thomas Eidson.
  • Produced by Brian Grazer, Daniel Ostroff, Ron Howard at Revolution/Imagine/Columbia.

Grade..........................C+ (1/4)

Copyright © 1998-2022 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at HollywoodReportCard.com, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: www.RossAnthony.com or call 1-800-767-7186. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.

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Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 08:03:36 PDT