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The Disappearance of Flight 412 (1974)

 
 

Flight of Fancy

David Soul in The Disappearance of Flight 412 (1974)

Colonel Pete Moore (Glenn Ford - Day of the Evil Gun) has sent 4 men out on a test flight as there had been some electrical issues which needed checking out. During this routine flight they encounter 3 blips on the radar and two fighter jets scramble just in case. But as the jets near the test flight they just vanish off the radar as do the blips leading to a top level Government agency called SID forcing the test flight to land at an abandoned airfield in the desert where the crew are locked in a room to be debriefed and brain washed over what they saw. Meanwhile Colonel Moore is desperately trying to work out what has happened to his men on the test flight as no one seems willing to tell him where they are.

"All is not what it seems" is something that a conspiracist friend loves to say to me and "All is not what it seems" is a good way to summarise "The Disappearance of Flight 412" a made for TV movie from 1974. The synopsis for "The Disappearance of Flight 412" I read made it sound like an UFO movie as we have a test flight, strange blips on a radar and then the disappearance of two fighter jets which are scrambled. But in truth it ends up a cover up movie which focuses on a mysterious Government agency who intercept the test flight and then brain wash the pilots into believing that what they witnessed was not UFO based.

Now for fans of conspiracy movies "The Disappearance of Flight 412" might just entertain as it speculates that for a long time the Government have been aware of UFOs and covered things up with a secret airbase used to debrief and brain wash those who have had encounters. But for anyone else it ends up not only disappointing because it is not about UFOs but also a low budget movie about Colonel Pete Moore trying to find his men who have been taken by an agency and help them escape. It ends up pretty dull and in many ways feels like the bare bones of an idea thanks to the frequent use of journalist style narration to try and make this appear like one of the late night shows about old mysteries being investigated.

In the end for those who end up disappointed by what "The Disappearance of Flight 412" ends up becoming the only good thing is that Glenn Ford delivers his usual solid performance despite a weak script and whilst even if his character is poor it is always nice to David Soul in a movie. In the end the best performance comes from Guy Stockwell who has a nice element of nasty going on as SID leader, Lieutenant Colonel Trottman.

What this all boils down to is that "The Disappearance of Flight 412" might just entertain those who seek out conspiracy movies but it ends up dull for anyone else.

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