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January 01, 2009

THE MISSING

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ColeSmithey.comThomas Edison’s novel “The Last Ride” inspired this unusual 1880’s western thriller directed by Ron Howard (“A Beautiful Mind”).

Tommy Lee Jones and Cate Blanchett are powerful as a father and daughter who join up to rescue Maggie’s (Blanchett) kidnapped daughter Lily (Evan Rachel Wood) from a depraved group of sadistic misfits planning to sell their girl hostages to become prostitutes in Mexico.

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The story’s emotional and dramatic arcs crisscross above the reconciliation between the tough-minded physician daughter and her roving father, who has adopted the dress and ways of the Indian since his marriage to a now deceased Indian woman.

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“The Missing” is overly drawn out but benefits much from Jones’s and Blanchett’s absorbing performances. The script is by Ken Kaufman (co-writer on “Space Cowboys,” another Tommy Lee Jones vehicle).

Rated R. 130 mins.

3 Stars

Cozy Cole

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