It starts with a power outage. Where once stood living beings are now piles of discarded clothes. The once sunny city is shrouded in blackness. Shadows creep across every surface and whispers echo in the empty streets. Is it some form of enemy attack or a swift judgment from the divine? Each passing day contains fewer daylight hours, and only those who cling to some other form of light can escape the encroaching darkness.
A small group of survivors congregate in an old bar powered by a gas generator. Luke (Hayden Christensen) is a slick TV anchor forced to live by his wits. Paul (John Leguizamo) is a lonely projectionist working in a multiplex theatre. Rosemary (Thandie Newton) is a distraught mother whose baby is missing, and James (Jacob Latimore) is a shotgun-toting kid waiting for his mother to return. With their light sources slowly dying, they must find alternative illumination and a way out of the city. Overcome with paranoia and fear, the group struggles to understand the events that have brought them together.
Having established himself as a master of cinematic shock and dementia with Session 9 and The Machinist, Brad Anderson continues to produce nerve-wracking cinema. Leaping from a scenario straight out of The Twilight Zone, Anderson strips away the comfort of sunlight and replaces it with haunting existential questions. Using dark, murky tones as his palette, Anderson and cinematographer Uta Briesewitz (Session 9) craft a stark but evocative journey through the most menacing of nights.
More interested in detailed characters than disposable victims, Anderson brings out a new-found maturity in Hayden Christensen, who portrays a man struggling to hide his own panicked fears and emotions. A dark and challenging film, Vanishing on 7th Street never condescends to the audience and is sure to fuel conversations about loneliness, alienation, basic primal fears and, ultimately, our raison d’être. –TIFF.net
Brad Anderson (born 1964) is a film director. A director of thriller and horror films and television projects, he is best known for having directed The Machinist (2004), starring Christian Bale, as well as producing and directing several installments of the FOX science-fiction series Fringe.
Anderson was born in Madison, Connecticut, the son of Pamela Taylor Anderson, a community services administrator. He is the nephew of Emmy Award-winning actress Holland Taylor. Before he began his film career, he attended Bowdoin College, where he majored in anthropology and Russian. He then went to London to finish his film education before returning to Boston.
His films have varied from Sundance Film Festival audience favorites (and romantic comedies) Next Stop Wonderland (1998) and Happy Accidents (2000) to darker films such as Session 9 (2001) and The Machinist (2004), starring Christian Bale. He was inspired to use the Danvers State Hospital… read more
I like its modesty. Technically not a great movie, but superficial stories and qualities aside - we're all surrounded by that 'ultimate' inevitable, mysterious shadow, our brittle egos in fear of death/disappearance desperately affirming that 'i exist i exist i exist', fear, reasons to live, meaning, loss etc. The ending is yes, lame by some standards, but archetypal of natural innocence pressing on. Simple. Nice.
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