When the Lights Go Out
It was just another day in Detroit; Paul (John Leguizamo) was working at a cinema, Luke (Hayden Christensen) was waiting in bed for his girl, Rosemary (Thandie Newton) was working at the hospital and young James (Jacob Latimore) was at the bar his mum owns. But then the power went out and everything went dark with everyone seemingly taken by the darkness which encroaches on the fading lights which these individuals have. With what daylight there is each day becoming less these four strangers must make sense of what is going on and how to survive.
First thoughts; when I read a synopsis for "Vanishing on 7th Street" and saw that in a split second people disappeared with just bundles of clothes left behind my immediate thought was this another bit of Christian cinema, another "Left Behind" movie which there are a surprising number of. But then I read the encroaching darkness on fading light and I thought well that sounds intriguing and not like any piece of Christian cinema I have seen. And in fairness "Vanishing on 7th Street" is intriguing but is also incredibly uneven.
The trouble is that for a good while "Vanishing on 7th Street" seriously is lacking in atmosphere, preferring trying to create mystery by keeping facts from us. Nothing wrong with that if there is something in place of it but there isn't. You have to wait until these 4 strangers ends up together and we start getting the excitement of the encroaching darkness which puts them in danger. We also get back stories and suddenly we start to get this picture painted of what is going on and how each of these people are handling it. But yet it still feels like it is intentionally keeping the audience in the dark and then you begin to wonder where this is going as what can these people do, where can they go and to be honest you stop caring which is a real shame as the ideas are good.
What this all boils down to is that "Vanishing on 7th Street" has some fantastic ideas, it also has some great visuals. But the movie just doesn't come together, doesn't get the atmosphere or the flow of detail right and so in the end it ends up uneven.