✰✰✰✰✰ (out of five)
Synopsis: In 1974, 12-year-old Jan Broberg is abducted from a small church-going community in Idaho by a trusted neighbour and close family friend.
Review: When I saw this riveting, shaking documentary in May of 2018 during last year's Chicago Critics Film Festival, I spoke to my one of my one-time colleagues of the fine CFCA and said, "That is some 'Dear Zachary' level sh*t right there." That film being "Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father," a 2008 documentary about a family rocked by the gun death of their son at the hands of his pregnant ex-girlfriend and the story they wanted to instill into his unborn son, Zachary. And if that brief about that doc rattles you, then good. You have your practice in for "Abducted in Plain Sight." A documentary is supposed to rattle, shake and infect you with its message--all docs have a biased and that is their point. And that is precisely what "Abducted" does. It is as emotion-smearing as one can expect with a warped and unique story like this. Its wrenching to OUR core, but especially to the family and those directly involved. No matter the criticism the film gets--especially on social media when it debuted earlier this year on Netflix--the key thing to remember is that the abducted girl wasn't the only victim. The parents, siblings and friends of young Jan were all victimized by this horrible human being. They all bare their souls in this film, confessing to errors in judgment and faith while trying to find some level of catharsis. "Abducted in Plain Sight" is an extraordinary documentary of extraordinary real-life events. I am glad it has gotten the play--good or bad--it has received. It was the best thing I saw at CCFF 2018.
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