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"Vanishing On 7th Street" Review

An even-less-populated-than-usual Detroit is the setting for the small-time suspense-horror flick Vanishing on 7th Street, starring Hayden Christensen, John Leguizamo, Thandie Newton, and newcomer Jacob Latimore. If you're from the Motor City, it's fun to spot locations and local Channel 7 newscasters, but there's not much for general audiences to appreciate.

It starts spookily enough with the adults being introduced in scenes where there is a blackout and when the lights come back on, everyone else has disappeared, leaving their empty clothes and possessions where they were when they vanished. Creepy shadows close in held at bay by the dimming flashlights and glow sticks. They eventually end up in a bar with a kid whose mother had gone for help, never to return. A rickety generator is providing light for this sanctuary, but isn't going to last forever.

Director Brad Anderson (who coincidentally helmed last night's Fringe episode) does alright with keeping things creepy, but is stranded without much of a script nor an ending that makes going for the ride worthwhile. Hayden does nothing to erase his "Mannequin Skywalker" rep - what happened to the guy who was decent in Shattered Glass? - and the others aren't given much to do. Even worse, the nature of the shadows is never explained or even speculated upon; they're just a menace to trick and pick off the survivors. Everyone disappears and those who don't have no reason for their fortune. Bah.

Score: 3/10. Catch it on cable.


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