Apache Release dateNovember 26, 2003 (2003-11-26) Based onThe Last Ride
by Thomas Eidson WriterThomas Eidson (novel), Ken Kaufman (screenplay) CastTommy Lee Jones (Samuel Jones), Cate Blanchett (Maggie Gilkeson), Evan Rachel Wood (Lilly Gilkeson), Jenna Boyd (Dot Gilkeson), Aaron Eckhart (Brake Baldwin), Val Kilmer (Lt. Jim Ducharme) Similar moviesThe Rescuers Down Under, Self/less, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Kill Bill: Vol. 2
TaglineHow far would you go, how much would you sacrifice to get back what you have lost?
The missing 2003 official movie trailer
When rancher and single mother of two Maggie Gilkeson (Cate Blanchett) sees her teenage daughter, Lily (Evan Rachel Wood), kidnapped by Apache rebels, she reluctantly accepts the help of her estranged father, Samuel (Tommy Lee Jones), in tracking down the kidnappers. Along the way, the two must learn to reconcile the past and work together if they are going to have any hope of getting Lily back before she is taken over the border and forced to become a prostitute.
The Missing is a 2003 American Revisionist Western thriller film directed by Ron Howard, based on Thomas Eidsons 1996 novel The Last Ride. The film is set in 1885 New Mexico Territory and is notable for the authentic use of the Apache language by various actors, some of whom spent long hours studying it. The film was produced by Revolution Studios, Imagine Entertainment, and Daniel Ostroff Productions and distributed by Columbia Pictures.
When rancher and single mother of two Maggie Gilkeson sees her teenage daughter, Lily, kidnapped by Apache rebels, she reluctantly accepts the help of her estranged father, Samuel, in tracking down the kidnappers. Along the way, the two must learn to reconcile the past and work together if they are going to have any hope of getting Lily back before she is taken over the border and forced to become a prostitute.
In late 19th-century New Mexico, Samuel Jones reappears hoping to reconcile with his adult daughter Maggie Gilkeson. She is unable to forgive him for abandoning the family and leaving her mother to a hard life and early death. This situation changes when Pesh-Chidin and a dozen of his followers (who have left the reservation) pass through the area, ritualistically killing settlers and taking their daughters to be sold into slavery in Mexico. Among those captured is Maggies eldest daughter, Lilly. Maggies rancher boyfriend Brake Baldwin was among the settlers killed.
The U.S. Cavalry refuses to help retrieve the captive women as its resources are tied up conducting forced relocation of captive Native Americans. This leaves Maggie, her father, and her younger daughter Dot alone in tracking the attackers. The group unexpectedly meets up with Kayitah, a Chiricahua, and an old friend of Jones, who also happens to be tracking the attackers with his son Honesco, because among the captives is a young Chiricahua woman who is engaged to Honesco. After the two agree to join the group, and Maggie treats Honescos injuries, Kayitah informs Maggie that Jones had been a member of their Chiricahua band where he gained the name Chaa-duu-ba-its-iidan ("shit for luck") during his wanderings.
It is finally with the combined efforts of the two families that they are able to free the women, at the cost of Kayitahs life, and immediately flee to the mountains with the kidnappers behind them. Knowing they have no other choice but to stand their ground, the group fights off the remaining kidnappers including Two Stone. During the battle, Jones fights El Brujo, the one responsible for kidnapping his granddaughter. When Brujo attempts to kill Maggie with a shotgun, Jones sacrifices his life to save his daughter as both he and Brujo fall off a cliff to their deaths. Maggie shoots at the last remaining kidnappers to scare them off. She realizes her fathers love for her and finally forgives him.
Then she goes home with her father´s body, her daughters and the other kidnapped girls.
Tommy Lee Jones as Samuel Jones/Chaa-duu-ba-its-iidan
Cate Blanchett as Magdalena "Maggie" Gilkeson
Evan Rachel Wood as Lilly Gilkeson
Jenna Boyd as Dot Gilkeson
Aaron Eckhart as Brake Baldwin
Val Kilmer as Lt. Jim Ducharme
Sergio Calderon as Emiliano
Eric Schweig as Pesh-Chidin/El Brujo
Steve Reevis as Two Stone
Jay Tavare as Kayitah
Simon R. Baker as Honesco
Deryle J. Lujan as Naazhaao
David Midthunder as Happy Jim
Clint Howard as Sheriff Purdy
Ray McKinnon as Russell J. Wittick
Max Perlich as Issac Edgerly
The film earned mixed reviews from critics, earning it a 58% rating on Rotten Tomatoes with one critic calling it: "an expertly acted and directed Western. But like other Ron Howard features, the movie is hardly subtle." Philip French of The Observer referred to the film as Howard’s "finest film to date," and Michael Wilmington of the Chicago Tribune called it the "best and toughest western since Unforgiven."
The Missing was well received among Native American populations within the United States, many of which citing the use of the Apache language to be clearly spoken and well understood. Actors such as Tommy Lee Jones, Jay Tavare, Simon R. Baker, and others had to learn to speak the Chiricahua dialect of the Apache language, that was used throughout the film. Tavare has noted that there are only about 300 people still fluent in Chiricahua today, and following screenings of the film, Native American students said the film helped stimulate pride through its authenticity.
The Missing grossed $27 million domestically and $11.4 million internationally for a worldwide total of $38.4 million.