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Into Thin Air (1985)

Not Rated | | Drama | TV Movie 29 October 1985
Ellen Burstyn stars as the Canadian mother of a college student who vanishes mysteriously while driving back to school in the states. After having no luck from the police, she hires a ... See full summary »

Director:

Roger Young

Writer:

George Rubino
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ellen Burstyn ... Joan Walker
Robert Prosky ... Jim Conway
Sam Robards ... Stephen Walker
Nicholas Pryor ... Larry Walker
John Dennis Johnston ... Earl Pike
Patricia Smith ... Olga Conway
Tate Donovan ... Brian Walker
J.P. Bumstead J.P. Bumstead ... Agent Cameron
Bill Calvert Bill Calvert ... Rob Walker
Britt Leach ... Sgt. Keyes
Ebbe Roe Smith ... Kevin
Elizabeth Barclay Elizabeth Barclay ... Girl at Gas Station
Dale Wilson ... FBI Agent Drake
Babs Chula ... Maggie
Ken Douglas Ken Douglas ... Lloyd Mason
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Storyline

Ellen Burstyn stars as the Canadian mother of a college student who vanishes mysteriously while driving back to school in the states. After having no luck from the police, she hires a private detective (Robert Prosky) to help her. Their tenacious pursuit of clues uncovers the grim details of her son's fate, leading to a shocking climax. Written by Joan Crawford & William Castle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 October 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Into Thin Air See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The search leads them to Maine, Nebraska, Colorado, and Utah. See more »

Quotes

Joan Walker: We did your job.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Fifth Estate: Just Another Missing Kid (1981) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Jurisdictional complexities"
3 August 2017 | by moonspinner55See all my reviews

True story about a missing young man is less a criminal drama or crime-mystery than it is an indictment of the justice system, the entanglements of legal procedures, jurisdictional red tape and the incompetence of government officials. Ellen Burstyn shows true grit as the mother of the college student who vanished, last heard from in Nebraska after his van broke down while driving from Ottawa, Canada to Boulder, Colorado to attend classes. TV-movie has the kid's determined mother, his older brother, his father from Los Angeles and an elderly private investigator running into one roadblock after another while tracking the path of the boy's stolen van, receipts from his credit card and his cashed traveler's checks. Although the film was nominated for an Eddie for Eric A. Sears' editing, its muddled midsection really could have used some paring down (instead of getting answers, such as how one nasty felon with a list of priors managed to pass a lie detector test, we are treated to incidentals at Burstyn's job and the detective's marriage). Also, the opening, showing the high energy relationship between the kid in question and his family, rings false (it's too blatantly perky--I'm guessing to provide a contrast to the bleak circumstances that follow). Frustrated Burstyn gets a chance to blow off some steam, and she's terrific when she takes on indifferent authority figures, however the reenactment at the finale of the boy's fate is extremely hard to watch. A purposefully depressing experience overall, but nevertheless an engrossing story.


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