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In 1885 New Mexico, a frontier medicine woman forms an uneasy alliance with her estranged father when her daughter is kidnapped by an Apache brujo.


Ron Howard


Thomas Eidson (novel), Ken Kaufman (screenplay)
2 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Tommy Lee Jones ... Samuel Jones / Chaa-duu-ba-its-iidan
Cate Blanchett ... Magdalena Gilkeson
Evan Rachel Wood ... Lilly Gilkeson
Jenna Boyd ... Dot Gilkeson
Aaron Eckhart ... Brake Baldwin
Val Kilmer ... Lt. Jim Ducharme
Sergio Calderón ... Emiliano
Eric Schweig ... Pesh-Chidin / El Brujo
Steve Reevis ... Two Stone
Jay Tavare ... Kayitah
Simon Baker ... Honesco, Kayitah's son
Ray McKinnon ... Russell J. Wittick
Max Perlich ... Isaac Edgerly
Ramon Frank Ramon Frank ... Grummond
Deryle J. Lujan Deryle J. Lujan ... Naazhaao / 'Hunter'


In 19th-century New Mexico, a father (Tommy Lee Jones) comes back home, hoping to reconcile with his adult daughter Maggie (Cate Blanchett). Maggie's daughter is kidnapped, forcing father and estranged daughter to work together to get her back. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


How far would you go, how much would you sacrifice to get back what you have lost?

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »




Release Date:

26 November 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Last Ride See more »

Filming Locations:

New Mexico, USA See more »


Box Office


$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,833,633, 30 November 2003, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$27,011,180, 31 December 2004
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (extended)

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS



Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Director Ron Howard and Val Kilmer previously worked together in Willow (1988). See more »


After finding the photographer's wagon, an owl is seen sitting in a tree. As the owl flies away the sound of wings flapping is heard, When an owl flies, the wings are totally silent. See more »


Samuel Jones: If I stay here very long, I might misbehave. Somebody might have to kill me.
See more »


Featured in Inside the Actors Studio: Episode #10.3 (2003) See more »


The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze
Lyrics by George Leybourne
Music by Gaston Lyle
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Superb movie, from start to finish.
18 March 2004 | by disbrowdmSee all my reviews

I absolutely loved this movie! It was suspenseful, dramatic and beautifully directed. Some people don't care for a Western with an ugly subject like female abduction and slave labor, but that's not what this movie was entirely about. There was a mysterious connection between Samuel and his daughter, Maggie, and that connection remained until the end of the movie, as intended. Not all Westerns are neat and clean, you know. There was also the wider message of hope and healing, which I found consistent with the main characters' personalities. Furthermore, this movie had strikingly colorful scenery amidst unpalatable characters, which enhanced dramatic elements against the background of uncertainty. Now if you want to talk about acting, I found the character of Samuel Jones to be one of the BEST that Tommy Lee ever played. He went beyond his duty for this part; in fact, he learned the Native language and dialect for his convincing role as a white-man drifter. You won't find many modern actors giving that type of dedication to their roles these days. And Cate Blanchett was superb; this was a far more dynamic role for her than in LOTRs. Unfortunately, The Missing wasn't given its due, in part because of its ill-timed release. It came out the same week as Master and Commander- what rotten luck- but it's truly one of Ron Howard's finest movies ever directed (next to Apollo 13).

If you'd like to expand your imagination into the possibilities beyond the final cut, then rent the 2 disc version for deleted scenes and alternative endings. You won't be disappointed.

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