Gone Girl is a multi-layered, complex character & mystery driven film that runs 149 minutes and is R-Rated for some sexuality and one arguably gratuitously violent scene, but is one of the most cleverly knit films I’ve ever seen.
For those that want to read a quick review with no spoilers, here:
Gone Girl is a well crafter thriller that closely knits together the perspectives that help unfold the mystery of the disappearance of Amy Dunne (Rosamund Pyke). Ben Affleck pulls off an incredible performance as Nick Dunne, who unravels the mystery. I can’t say much more than that without spoiling the twist, but this movie is worth seeing. Nothing is as it seems.
I will say this – the movie is 2 hours 29 minutes, and not a single person talked in the theatre. Everyone was captivated by it and stayed interested the whole time.
This was one of the most twisted psychological mystery-thrillers I’ve seen in a while. It’s one thing to have a psychopathic killer blatantly kill the innocent (generic horror movie nowadays), but this movie wasn’t a horror movie. It felt realistic even though it was a film. This movie felt a lot like Prisoners (starring Hugh Jackman). They had the same feel and tone: very dark and real, which worked really well with the subject of the movie. The two movies go hand-in-hand, where the husband (who was at one point the main suspect) feels the police aren’t doing their jobs fast enough, looking at the wrong people, and taking the case into their own hands. The centre male figure end up helping solve the case and finding out what happened to their loved ones before the police do. In both films, the person responsible for the kidnapping isn’t at all who you thought it would be, but nothing at all in Gone Girl seemed to be what you expected. From the information presented at the beginning of the film you gathered (that Nick Dunne may or may not have killed his wife and) then add on top of that the order of the information presented (I’m trying to keep this part as spoiler free as possible), makes you question literally everything about the film, the story and the motives of the characters themselves.
Gone Girl worked so well because it kept you guessing the whole time, and as soon as you thought you knew what was going on, you were forced to revaluate every bit of information. But when it’s all done, Gone Girl was one of the most gripping and well-put together thriller-myst
Now, the long & SPOILER-FILLED review:
David Fincher’s Gone Girl surprised me.
I went in thinking “Alright, let’s give this Ben Affleck thriller a chance”, but I left astonished. I walked out of the theatre and felt the intensity of the film hit me. David Fincher hits back hard with this mystery-thriller which stands up to his others: Se7en, Fight Club, & The (highly underrated) Game (starring Michael Douglas).
Ben Affleck delivered a note-worthy performance of a man losing his wife, struggling to grasp onto reality once he becomes suspect number one, but once the plot twists came about, the movie took a fantastically disturbing turn.
Here’s where the spoilers begin:
Ben Affleck gave an impeccable performance as Nick Dunne, while the real star was Rosamund Pyke who played the psychopathically manipulating twisted wife Amy Dunne who fakes her disappearance/kidnapping (and too many sexual assaults for it to be a coincidence that’s she innocent). Neil Patrick Harris and Tyler Perry did well in the tone of the film, given their usual comedic roles.
Rosamund Pyke gives one amazing performance as the absolutely disturbed wife Amy Dunne. When her first attempt to “go missing” don’t work out, she very quickly turns to an old boyfriend (Neil Patrick Harris) and churns her crazy out on him as well. The way Rosamund Pyke portrayed the character was eerie and demented and it worked perfectly.
The movie’s intense tone kept the theatre in silence.
The plot twist in the middle of the movie is what kept me enticed from that point on – when Amy Dunne is revealed to have not only faked her own disappearance, but also that she was framing her husband for it too, that’s when the real story started.
From start to finish I enjoyed this movie, and I’ve been hearing confusion about the ending, but I have a theory:
At the beginning of Gone Girl, the audience was spoon-fed to question whether or not Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) killed his wife Amy (Rosamund Pyke), but I only asked that question at the end.
Allow me to explain:
The first shot and the last shot were the same.
The exact same, except there’s a line at the beginning that’s not repeated in the end.
Gone Girl opens & closes with Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck)’s voice (and the shot below of Rosamund Pyke) “The primal questions of marriage,” he states, are: “What are you thinking? How are you feeling? What have we done to each other?” On screen we see a tight shot of the back of a blonde head, its body asleep, face down on a pillow.
*BUT the ending DOESN’T have the following line (but the opening does):
“I imagine cracking open her head,” he continues, “unspooling her brain, trying to get answers.” Amy Dunne looks up.
Now, my theory is that the reason the entire shot was paralleled, but the line about “cracking her head open” was not included second time round, was because Nick Dunne ends up killing his wife after the movie ends.
The only reason a director would put a parallel opening and closing, but leave out a specific line (especially a line with so much importance/relevance to the story – Amy Dunne attempts to frame Nick Dunne for killing her via beating her with a small bat), is that it meant something much more than what was obvious.
Near the end of Gone Girl, after Amy Dunne has returned and is back in their house, Nick (Ben Affleck) hates his wife; she attempted to frame him for her murder/dissapearance in hopes that he would get the death penalty, then slaughters an innocent man (Neil Patrick Harris) and blames her kidnapping on him, and to add everything on top of that, she’s trapped him for nearly the next two decades because she steals Nick’s sample from the fertility clinic to get herself pregnant.
Now, I have a running theory about David Fincher films.
Everything that you start off with is contradicted and exposed more than twice. His movies have so many levels, if you don’t pay attention for a minute, you’re lost.
The strongest reason behind my query about Gone Girl’s ending is because I had the same feeling at the end of his other psycho-thriller Se7en.
Overall, Gone Girl stands in my Top 20 proudly.
Thanks for reading you guys.
What did you think of Gone Girl? Any thoughts on the movies casting? How did Ben Affleck, Tyler Perry & Neil Patrick Harris do in their (out of usual character) roles?
Let us know below!
10/17/2014 – 11:41 am