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Missing 411 The Hunted 2019

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This film is based on one of Paulides’ recent Missing 411 titles covering hunters who vanished and it is one of the most chilling documentary films I've seen. The circumstances under which the hunters disappear, things that go on with their clothing and equipment, bizarre things that occur during the search efforts and how people are found make the cases stand out from typical missing persons cases caused by animal attacks, murders, drug deals gone bad, suicides and mental illness. Paulides weeds out conventional disappearances and the resulting data paints a frightening picture of the great outdoors where it seems something inexplicable is snatching people or causing them to wander off the beaten path to their deaths. Many of the hunters in the cases covered in the film went armed into remote areas only to vanish without a trace. Tracking dogs brought to the scenes can't pick up scents and things found during the searches leave law enforcement baffled. If located, the hunters are often discovered dead in locations so far from where they initially went missing that it boggles the mind as to how the remains ended up there. Paulides visits the locations in this film to show just how remote the places are. Several of the cases clearly demonstrate that the missing hunters had to cross miles of very rugged terrain to reach their final resting places.

What bothers me the most about the cases covered in the Missing 411 series are the odd details that pop up in individual cases. While each of the cases covered in Dave’s work have shared common features that make them stand apart from typical missing persons cases, some of the cases have oddities that add an extra layer of weirdness. Paulides interviews family and friends of the missing as well as lawmen and news reporters involved with the cases, and during these filmed conversations the interviewees remark on strange details of the disappearances. In one case members of a hunting party in rural New York heard strange sounds emanating from the forest just before one of their companions vanished without a trace. A police officer interviewed by Paulides mentions that the woods were strangely silent and typical wildlife activity was very subdued, so much so that it struck him as odd. This random weirdness turns up from time to time in non-hunting related cases Paulides covers in his books. In fact, many of the missing hunters disappeared in areas where people not engaged in hunting also went missing under weird circumstances.

Paulides does not state explanations for what is causing people to go missing. He does explore strange phenomena at the end of this film, interviewing scientist and outdoorsman claiming to have encountered weird things in the woods, and given the bizarre nature of some of these cases you can’t help but wonder if something truly creepy and inhuman is not at work. Paulides doesn’t state it outright but the implication is that strange forest presences or something conscious and predatory is at work in at least some of the disappearances.

Comments

I just noticed this after I uploaded a 1080p copy. It's a great documentary. The UFO scene towards the end is quite startling.