DVD Review - Vanishing on 7th Street

John Leguizamo in
"Vanishing on 7th Street"
This is another psychological thriller directed by Brad Anderson (The Machinist). This one is even darker and more moody than his previous works, certainly more contemplative, just unfortunately not as good.

Hayden Christensen, John Leguizamo, Thandie Newton and Jacob Latimore co-star as four people who are seemingly the last remaining humans left on earth after everyone disappears in the night. Some people are around, but they start to be taken too.

Anderson probably uses the most special effects of his career thus far. If you'll recall the movie Ghost (1990), Patrick Swayze's character, Sam Wheat, sees shadows come out of the darkness, rise up and abduct people after they die. Here, Anderson's characters see similar shadows rise up and abduct people but while they're still alive. The shadows retreat from light, so they're like vampires, gremlins or those creatures from Pitch Black (2000) or I Am Legend (2007).

Only this movie is nowhere near as scary. Anderson's films generally aren't scary. They're creepy and emotionally intense. Yet, I feel like because Anderson borrows from a lot of horror movie conventions that it's supposed to be scary.

Because the monster is ultimately so vague and in fact non-substantive, this movie is more akin to M. Night Shyamalan's The Happening. It may not be as non-sensical, but it certainly feels as hollow. It's basically a survival movie, a disaster film with nothing to say, or at least nothing new to say.

Two Stars out of Five.
Rated R for language.
Running Time: 1 hr. and 32 mins.


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