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Contract hit man Jay Mallory works for an unknown organization. He returns home to his downtown Montréal apartment one winter day to find that his wife, Celandine, is gone. Mallory initially thinks that Celandine has left on her own volition since theirs was a sometimes stormy, albeit passionate, relationship. However, words from Mallory's main point of contact at the organization, Burbank, indicate that Celandine's disappearance may be associated with Mallory's last hit. Shortly after their discussion, Burbank himself disappears. The organization assigns Mallory another job in Suffolk, England. Mallory has a feeling that there is something unusual about this job - he is given little initial information including not knowing who the target is - and that it too is associated with Celandine's disappearance. Despite feeling that he may be being set up, Mallory decides to take the job anyway to see how it plays out and if it leads him back to Celandine.Written by
Version 1: The original director's cut which runs at 101 minutes and is healthily non-linear, influenced by the temporal experiments of earlier films such as Hiroshima mon amour (1959), Don't Look Now (1973), and Point Blank (1967).
Version 2: An unauthorized, shortened, re-edited version by Fima Noveck that runs at 81 minutes and attempts to put the narrative into a more coherent order by reducing the complexity of the narrative by coding the instances of non-linearity as flashbacks; and reducing their frequency and length.
Version 3: A third version that runs at 91 minutes but maintains the jumbled time frame and comes across as a leaner and more abstract version of the original. See more »
In the film, Donald Sutherland plays an international hit-man, set out to find his missing wife which is based on the novel 'Echoes of Celandine' by Derek Marlowe.
I was lucky enough to view Stuart Cooper's original cut of 'The Disappearance' which has never seen and is not available on DVD.
Just like his film OVERLORD which has been released by the Criterion Collection and become a classic, 'The Disappearance' holds it's own. The acting is first rate, the original music is lush and the John Alcott's cinematography is outstanding.
It is a shame that untalented producers are allowed to tamper with the original works. The original is in a non-linear format. Perhaps the reviewers should watch the original uncut/unedited version and then I would think they would revise their reviews. It is brilliant! Hopefully it will be screened at a festival in the future so all can enjoy.
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