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The Disappearance of Christina

John Stamos stars in this murder mystery about a man whose life falls apart after his wife disappears and he's accused of her murder. What could have been a generic missing-persons movie is vastly improved by some exciting and interesting story twists.

With:
Cast: John Stamos, Robert Carradine, Kim Delaney, C.C.H. Pounder, Claire Yarlett, Rita Zohar, Mindy Seeger, Wylie Draper, Randy Ogelsby, Casey Sander, Dimitra Arlys, Penelope Crabtree, Eva Pamintuan, Fred D. Scott, Jack Yates, Larry Marks, Thomas Knickerbocker, Tanya Boyd, Tom Hodges, Elaine Welton Hill, Joan Hotchkis, Jane Marla Robbins.

John Stamos stars in this murder mystery about a man whose life falls apart after his wife disappears and he’s accused of her murder. What could have been a generic missing-persons movie is vastly improved by some exciting and interesting story twists.

Joe Seldon (Stamos) is a successful businessman with a seemingly perfect marriage to Christina (Claire Yarlett). To celebrate the signing of a lucrative business deal, Joe, Christina, Joe’s business partner Michael (Robert Carradine) and Michael’s wife Lily (Kim Delaney) go on a boating trip, during which Christina mysteriously disappears.

When no body is discovered, Joe maintains that Christina is still alive and has called him since her disappearance. He wakes up at night finding evidence that she may have been in the house. To make matters worse, he becomes the prime suspect of investigating officer Davis (C.C.H. Pounder).

Christina was from a very well-off family and had filed for divorce, which comes as a big surprise to Joe but not to Detective Davis, whose zest to nail Joe for murder is thereby increased. Joe sinks into a depression. To help bring himself out, he returns to work, only to discover some shocking revelations.

While there are some unexplained red herrings thrown in — it’s never explained what really happened to Christina, though several scenarios are alluded to — the script by Camille Thomasson remains suspenseful.

Stamos is rather one-dimensional, while Carradine and Pounder are better. Yarlett isn’t afforded much dialogue, but Delaney puts in a terrific performance.

Tom Neuwirth tries some unusually nice angles without letting them get in the way of telling the story, and director Karen Arthur does a good job with the “Is it a dream or is it real?” sequences in which Joe thinks Christina has returned to their house.

The Disappearance of Christina

(Thurs. (4), 9-11 p.m., USA)

Production: Filmed by B.A.L. Prods. in association with MCA Television Entertainment for USA Network. Producers, Paul Heller, Ruth Vitale, Barry Berg; director, Karen Arthur; writer, Camille Thomasson; production designer, Ed Wasall; set decorator , Stefan Wilcox.

Crew: Camera, Tom Neuwirth; sound, David Barre Yaffe; editor, Caroline Biggerstaff.

Cast: Cast: John Stamos, Robert Carradine, Kim Delaney, C.C.H. Pounder, Claire Yarlett, Rita Zohar, Mindy Seeger, Wylie Draper, Randy Ogelsby, Casey Sander, Dimitra Arlys, Penelope Crabtree, Eva Pamintuan, Fred D. Scott, Jack Yates, Larry Marks, Thomas Knickerbocker, Tanya Boyd, Tom Hodges, Elaine Welton Hill, Joan Hotchkis, Jane Marla Robbins.

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