Today: April 10, 2024

Vanishing On 7th Street

Are you afraid of the dark? Well if you are you can be safe in the knowledge that watching Brad Anderson’s Vanishing on 7th Street will not exacerbate your fear.

Are you afraid of the
dark? Well if you are you can be
safe in the knowledge that watching Brad Anderson’s Vanishing on 7th
Street will not exacerbate your fear.

When a massive city-wide power cut throws Detroit into
complete darkness, everyone mysteriously disappears, with piles of clothing where
they once stood strewn all over the ground and the city at a silent standstill. However a small group of people remains,
left in the desolate darkness as daylight fades with something in the shadows
intent on claiming their lives.
They gather in a deserted bar as they try to figure out this unexplained
phenomena and fight against the darkness for their survival.

Vanishing on 7th Street with its apocalyptic theme is
reminiscent of other movies of this kind, like The Happening, The Mist, I
Am Legend
or 28 Days Later. However, the beginning of the movie
promises a Twilight Zone sense of
overwhelming dread that does not follow through to the rest of the movie. The
sight of the discarded piles of clothes all over the city and the few who are
left gazing at them in horror leaves you expectant of some horrific
frights. But, if you intend
on watching this film alone and are worried you may shake with fear afterwards
as you ascend the stairs to bed in the dark – don’t worry. The atmosphere and suspense are
undoubtedly there, but there are simply not enough scares in this film.

On the up side, the stars of the film are on top form, with
most of the action coming from Hayden
Christensen
, Thandie Newton, John Leguizamo and newcomer youngster, Jacob Latimore. Christensen’s character takes control
despite his worry of his missing fiancée, Newton desperately and neurotically
searches for her baby son and Leguizamo descends in to a kind of madness as he
comes to accept his fate. The cast
does put their all in to making the most of a plot that is a bit on the weak
side and their performances complement one another. Latimore in particular gives an admirable performance as
James: a brave, young lad and born
survivor who has lost his mother to the evil in the darkness. We get some nice snippets of background
for each character in the form of flashbacks and this does help the story along
as they struggle to survive with the last remaining light sources and hide out
from the darkness.

Vanishing on 7th Street is passable as an
atmospheric thriller – it will not fill you with edge of your seat,
white-knuckled terror, but it will engage you enough to keep you watching
through to the end.

Alex Moss Editor

Alex Moss’ obsession with film began the moment he witnessed the Alien burst forth from John Hurt’s stomach. It was perhaps ill-advised to witness this aged 6 but much like the beast within Hurt, he became infected by a parasite called ‘Movies’. Rarely away from his computer or a big screen, as he muses on Cinematic Deities, Alex is “more machine now than man. His mind is twisted and evil”. Email: alex.moss@filmjuice.com

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