Published on March 3rd, 2015 | by Claude Saravia


Vanishing Act – Greatest TV Movie Ever Made?

Vanishing Act is the greatest TV movie I have ever seen. I am not sure that is saying much, but I stick by that statement.

Like so many movies I have initially watched and thought were mind-blowing, only to find out the movie turns out to not be original at all – Vanishing Act is actually based on a play called Trap for a Lonely Man (Piege Pour un Homme Seul) written by M. Robert Thomas.

The play has been adapted into movies numerous times prior to the initial airing of Vanishing Act in May of 1986.

Trap for a Solitary Man was a film that was to be directed by the great Alfred Hitchcock; however, Hitchcock never got around to making the film. Hitchcock, who directed over fifty films, had at least fifteen films that never made it past the pre-production stage. It is a shame, because Hitchcock would have masterly directed this story.

With Trap for a Solitary Man never being made by Hitchcock, it was shelved permanently. Instead, the play was remade into not one, not two, but three American TV movies. Honeymoon with a Stranger (ABC 1969), One of my Wives is Missing (1976) and finally with Vanishing Act in 1986. It also was made as a Russian adaptation titled Lovushka Dlya Odinokogo Muzhchiny (1990). It may have been remade a few other times in other countries as well.

For those who have not seen any of these, I have located a copy of Vanishing Act. I think you’ll enjoy it. It’ll be like watching Lois Lane (Margot Kidder) and Herman Munster (Fred Gwynne) in a Hitchcock style mystery. And for those of you too young to know those actors, you may recognize Elliott Gould as Monica’s Dad in Friends.

Please let us know what you think in the comments.

Without further ado, here it is.

Thanks for reading Sifting Through the Trash.

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6 Responses to Vanishing Act – Greatest TV Movie Ever Made?

  1. Heather says:

    Sadly I could not get this link to load. Any suggestions?

    • Make sure you are closing any ads that pop up. I would suggest trying it with the Adblocker plugin. Beyond that I can see if I can transfer the file over to a different format which I can send to you. But that may take some time if it is even possible.

      • Heather says:

        Nope, no luck.
        I have found someone selling a copy on dvd, hopefully that will work. I’ll let you know…

        • stevet says:

          you can find the movie on VEEHD and stagevu.
          On stagevu search for vanishing act vhs rip.

  2. Darryl Ruiz says:

    Loved this movie when I first saw it . Very similar to Rehearsal for Murder written by Levinson and Link and has a similar plot..A murderer is tricked into revealing his crime

  3. Rita says:

    I saw this movie many years ago. Although the performances of all were excellent, I guess the obvious plot hole could not be filled and therefore ignored due to censorship problems and ending the movie within minutes. I’m sure if most of us were facing the situation where someone claims to be our spouse, the first question to be asked in front of the police would be describe any marks, scars, scratches, age spots etc. I may have, if an, y in the area around my private parts and other lower extremities. Only a real spouse would know the answer to that.

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