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|Index||172 reviews in total|
This film is a masterpiece . The only question is how did the remake turn out to be so bad ? Steer well clear of the Hollywood version and track this movie down . You won't regret it .
I had heard how good this movie was from various reviews; it
like an absolutely horrific movie and I needed to see it. I made
mistake of going to see the remake when it first came out; at
time,I thought it was a good movie,but then I found the original
and it was TERRIFYING. The remake has a needlessly happy ending
onto it. Here,the ending is a real,satisfying shock. SPOORLOOS is
a fascinating,unforgettable character study of a man testing his capacity
for evil. A GREAT thriller with moments of subtle menace as well as
There are the scary movies that grab you with lots of gothic bumps-in-the-night, and there are the very few that sneak up behind you. "Spoorloos" (aka "The Vanishing") is one of the latter. At some point during the film I realized that I couldn't pull away - even when the events were getting deadly serious, and I wanted to. I haven't used the word "foreboding" since English class in high school, but it certainly applies to this film. Beautifully directed, with not a shot wasted, and the acting is great. I haven't seen the American version - but why bother? However, if you're looking for a good popcorn thriller, or you're alone watching it and you're sensitive, this may not be the movie for you. The ending is terrifying.
George Sluizer, the director, gives a lesson on the boundlessness of hope,
desire to know the truth, and on the question whether it is scarier to
or not to know. This movie has no (read as: does not need) fancy effects
a tricky plot. It is a display of brilliant story-telling and well sized,
Yes, watch the movie. But be warned: You will have to pay. It is thrilling (off the scale). It will change your mind. You will never forget it.
Personally I think, it was worth that bit of sanity.
Rex Hoffman's obsessional quest to discover what happened to his abducted girlfriend Saskia is at the centre of what I think is one of the most remarkable films ever made. Please don't allow yourself to be put off by the fact that this movie is subtitled, after the first ten minutes you'll be so gripped you won't care.One of the many impressive aspects of the film is its structure; although Saskia disappears early on we dont see exactly what fate befell her until the end, so when her abduction is played out in its entirety we watch it with a real sense of dread.Aswell as being an excellent study of the lengths a person will go to in unravelling the truth, it's also contains, in Bernard-Pierre Donnadieu's brilliant performance, a chilling depiction of a remorseless sociopath.On the surface he may appear to be a gentle family man, but this is simply his "mask of sanity", and the film perfectly illustrates how crimes of this nature can be so horribly random; Saskia is simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.I won't spoil the ending,but I think it's fair to say you'll be staring at the screen in true shock, which is all the more remarkable considering there's no bloodshed. All in all this is one of the eeriest and darkest movies you'll ever see. Oh and one final thing:we're always hearing about defining images in cinema like John Wayne's departure in the ridiculously over-rated Searchers and the infamous shower scene in Psycho, but in my opinion they pale in comparison to the shot of Donnadieu staking out his victim, with Saskia's image reflected
I watched this movie in DVD and I liked it. I am very glad I did not
read any of the user comments in the IMDB before I watched it:
quite a few reviews by Americans are quite
unfair and biased not that I disagree some comments by
Europeans are exaggerated.
It is not the ending that makes this 1988 Dutch film good. By the end of year 2001 we are so much used to Hollywood movies of 'shocking' endings (and all the unplesant tricks to 'shock' the audiences.) Now, think about this film. Is there any single scene that shows you a character painted with blood, or gross creatures or ghosts, or 'human-eating', or disgusting orchestral sounds that alarm the audience that something's going to happen, or...?? Nothing. Yet, until the end, you keep asking the same question that Rex asks to himself and to Raymond: "What happened to Saskia?", and if you ask "Why?" this film has more than enough to let yourself see the darkness of our human nature (or evil). I was not that surprised by the ending either but that is not really the point here. Nor that means the story is predictable. (I wonder what Americans mean by 'predictable'.) If you were disappointed by the film, probably you simply did not understand the film and it is not the fault of this film. Considering all the factors (acting, in particular) I'd give it 8.5/10 and I believe it is more honest and fair than 6/10.
Old people, intellectuals and wimps (and I identify with two of those three classifications) seem to like to talk about how subtlety is a lost art in the horror/suspense genre; replaced by cheap thrills, gore and gloss. It seems a bit old fashioned and cliched, but then again, how many horror classics actually DO contain copious depictions of disembowellings, decapitations, buckets of blood, etc, etc? I can think of maybe 4 or 5 (and the living dead trilogy makes up three of them), and none of those can even begin to rival the unsettling effect that Spoorloos had on me. True, it's hardly tailor made for American mass consumption (after all it's made be crazy foreigners who talk in funny languages, and us yanks find that stuff a little highbrow for our tastes) hence the remake, but anyone with a little bit of patience and an IQ over 65 should find this movie more than a little upsetting. Beats the pants off of any of the trash Hollywood constantly assaults us with on a daily basis. Not to sound TOO pretentious or anything...
I have never seen a scarier movie than this one, and there's no blood, no guts, no gore. This film terrifies you in the very reality of it, and makes you think hard and long about the everyday people you think you know, and how would you handle the vanishing of a loved one. This film stays with you for days and weeks after you see it. Really powerful.
Rule number one : never see the American remake, or do so and
observe why Hollywood can't make good movies,
The best Dutch movie ever made for me. The characters are
real you try to find out what they must be thinking. The entire movie
you speculate about the ending.
The kidnapper is such an intriging person that he made me think
about myself. What if ... ?
The ending is so good that it makes you wake up in the middle of the night. How devious.
This is a film that provokes terror very gradually over the course of the film. No gore, no sex, no guns, just psychological manipulation to a level that rarely appears in hollywood films. I'm not sure if this film qualifies as a horror, thriller, or a drama, but I cannot think of a creepier film than this one. I haven't seen the remake because the ending was changed to pander to the masses. This is what the story really was, and it is unflinching. Highly recommended.
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