12 July 2012 7:22 AM, PDT | The Film Stage | See recent The Film Stage news »

One of the most harrowing tragedies that can happen to any family is dealing with a missing child. The pain and anguish of not knowing what could have happened to their loved one is unimaginable except to those who have experienced it firsthand. But what if suddenly a call arrives from a foreign country, claiming to have the missing person in their possession, how would that family react?

Such is the focus of director Bart Layton’s The Imposter, a fascinating documentary that straddles the line between real life drama and a film noir narrative. Part of what makes this experience so unique is the masterful weaving between interviewing subjects and gleefully creating highly stylized re-enactments that heighten suspense and tension effectively. There’s a manner in which Layton subverts the audience’s normally complacent role of viewing into an active role of trying to comprehend the truth.

Following the tragic disappearance of Nicholas Barclay, »

- jpraup@gmail.com (thefilmstage.com)

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