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Missing (1982)

R  |   |  Drama, History, Mystery  |  12 March 1982 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 12,683 users  
Reviews: 85 user | 53 critic

When an idealistic writer disappears during the Right Wing military coup in 1973 Chile, his wife and American businessman father try to find him.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Horman
Charles Cioffi ...
Captain Ray Tower
Richard Venture ...
Colonel Sean Patrick
John Doolittle ...
Dave McGeary
Ward Costello ...


In September1973, in Chile, the American journalist Charles Horman arrives in Valparaiso with his friend Terry Simon to meet his wife Beth and bring her back to New York with him. However, they are surprised by the military coup d'état sponsored by the US Government to replace President Salvador Allende and Charles is arrested by the military force. His father Ed Horman, a conservative businessman from New York, arrives in Chile to seek out his missing son with Beth. He goes to the American Consulate to meet the Consul that promises the best efforts to find Charles while the skeptical Beth does not trust on the word of the American authorities. The nationalism and confidence of Ed in his government changes when he finds the truth about what happened with his beloved son. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

12 March 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Desaparecido  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Wikipedia states about the film's music score and soundtrack: "The score is by the Greek electronic composer Vangelis. The movie's piano theme has been used extensively in commercials, but an official release of the film's soundtrack has not yet occurred. The main theme appeared first on Vangelis' 1989 album Themes. The main theme is also available on a the Festival De Cannes (60th Anniversary) compilation of famous soundtracks. A bootleg release of the soundtrack exists. A sung version with lyrics by Tim Rice has been recorded by Elaine Paige". See more »


The opening credits roll on a shot of Charlie looking out on the street from the back seat of Capt. Tower's car. The window covers about half of his face, so it's a little more than halfway down. In the next shot showing the car, Charlie is still staring out the window (hasn't moved), but the window is most of the way down. See more »


Consul Phil Putnam: Please try to understand. There are so many cases. They're all so important, and this isn't the only one we're working on.
Ed Horman: It's the only one I care about.
Consul Phil Putnam: You and a lot of other people. Listen, I've never seen so many cables from Washington. What kind of pull do you have up there anyway?
Ed Horman: I'm an American citizen.
See more »


Referenced in Fiza (2000) See more »


Written by Bill Anderson (uncredited) and Jerry Crutchfield (uncredited)
Performed by Brenda Lee
Courtesy of MCA Records, Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

Eye-opening and depressing
23 December 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Though I was 30 yrs old when the film came out in 1982 I didn't see it at the time although I was aware of its content. And, as is true of a lot of people my age (tho not all, of course), I toyed with liberal political beliefs when I was younger (1960's and 1970's), then gradually became more moderate bordering on conservative as I got older, onto where now I personally am not too sure where to stand. Well, I just saw 'Missing' for the 1st time. It brings back all my previous leftist 'paranoia' about capitalism and national interests. And causes me to wonder why I ever abandoned them. After the movie, I cruised certain sites on the Internet, one being a series of articles referenced in the misc. section under this movie on IMDb. They chillingly re-enforced the truth (?) that at the highest levels of our government there was complicity, even outright orders, to kill thousands, including American citizens, in the interest of capitalism, national interests and (so-called) 'national security'. I am sorry to say (sorry in the sense that with my limited personal intelligence, I am never completely sure if I am right and sorry to doubt my own government) that I am starting agree with some others, that our foreign policy has, is and probably will be be based, to the detriment of our national security, on the almighty dollar. I'm also sorry for the political comments on a movie site but, of course, the nature of "Missing" brought this on, and its very well directed, written and acted scenes. Please don't question things I have said unless you have seen the movie and read some of the articles. 10/10 ***new addition*** And I completely, of course, agree with lev_lafayette. Read the book, it is much better. I have read the book, 'Missing'. And as with most movies based on books, especially 'non-fiction' books, the content in the book is more detailed and hits you closer to the bone, heart, mind and conscience in many ways than the movie. And that is hard to believe in this case because Constantin Costa-Gavras (director) managed to create a movie experience that is nearly as moving as the work it was based upon. It was/is a great movie experience....sir. Thank you, CC-G. For those of you out there who have an easy criticism (one I agree with) now of the US (MY country and I care about it) because of Iraq, you need to watch this film or read the book. What can go wrong is deep seated (human instincts) and hard to root out. It can happen to you and your country and government. We are all human and capable of desire, greed and religious beliefs overruling true morality and an open mind and heart. Please, all of you, keep things in perspective. Fight for the right of anyone to truly express their opinion without fear of repercussions and fight for the rights of all peoples. Especially against government repression and government crimes against humanity. Bless your soul, Charles Horman, and Thomas Hauser, the author of The Execution of Charles Horman: An American Sacrifice (1978). Curse your souls, all those who contributed toward Mr. Horman's death. Including my president and his advisers. nuffsaid

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