On a St. Valentine’s Day at the turn of the century, a party of girls from a strict boarding school go on an outing to Hanging Rock, a geological outcropping not far from their school. Part of the group vanish inexplicably.
To everyone who knew them, the disappearance was a tragedy. To the victims, a blessing. There was simply nothing for them in this world. They always seemed out of place, out of time. Having been spirited away they no longer belong to a specific place or time but to everywhere, and to all time. Some creatures simply were not meant for this world and it is unbearable act of cruelty to forcefully keep them here.
This film has loads more intelligence than it suggests in the first 20 minutes or so. The power in the film comes from all the varied themes hinted at and not necessarily the mystery of what happens to the girls but the effects their disappearance has on the rest of the characters. You may not have any answers at the end, but it remains disturbing as long as you think about it and stays in your consciousness.
The second half lacks focus, meandering from scene to scene, although it too has moments of visual greatness. It's the first half that is mesmerizing, haunting, surreal, and simply beautiful. However, what's impressive about the whole film is the subtle air of violence throughout. The ending keeps you guessing in a good way, and your imagination is the worst when you know that anything at all could have happened.