David Fincher is a man that excels in depictions of haunting imagery, twisted tales of betrayal and, of course, the darkest of human interactions – murder. Whether it’s fact, as he so boldly and meticulously showcased with Zodiac, or fiction as he showcased with Se7en, and now Gone Girl, he is the master of his craft and with each new project he only further proves his talent and eye for material. He knows who to surround himself with from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, who so beautifully convey the emotions through music that this movie elicits and demands. He brought the author of the book, Gillian Flynn, on as screenwriter and what a phenomenal script it is! It has all the twists and disturbing nature that is expected with a Fincher film and yet, despite its elements of familiarity, it never at any moment feels rehashed; it never feels anything but fresh and enthralling.
I am enamored by this movie as I am with any Fincher film. Yes, as you can tell, I am a bit of a David Fincher fanboy and you know what, I say that with pride. There is not a moment of dull neutrality or stagnancy; it always moves with purpose and intent to find exactly the truth and nothing but. It brings you along on an adventure that no one would ever want to experience firsthand, and yet you couldn’t be more grateful, or in my case ecstatic, to tag along for what will certainly be a wild and enigmatic thrill ride. In the more heightened moments of dread and peril I found myself leaning forward with a concentrated gaze as I could barely contain my excitement, yearning to find out what happens next. The movie is perfect from all aspects. From direction to screenplay, cinematography, acting, pacing, editing it feels as though it’s the best movie anyone could have hoped for it to be.
Gone Girl is a demented and scarily realistic look at a missing persons case, and the utter fallout this can have on those closest to the perceived victim. Complete disdain for the husband and nothing but well wishes and prayers for the innocent wife who has disappeared, possibly forever. Nick Dunne stands adamant that he had nothing to do with his wife’s current state of being, but in this country people determine your innocence or guilt in the first five minutes of hearing very limited amounts of information. Let’s not forget this “information” is coming from a less than favorable source, known for bending the truth simply for a better story – i.e. the media. Who did it? What actually happened? The truth is something far more bizarre than anyone could have ever anticipated. The ending will be up to those involved and it seems like no matter what choice they make it isn’t going to end well. It’s a matter of the lesser evil and with this case, that’s a hard thing to discern.
The tag line for this film is, “You don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s…” This is a genius line because before you see the film you jump to the perspective that this line is a way of making you cherish what and who you have in your life. But as you watch, this line begins to take on a whole different meaning. It becomes muddled and skewed. Nothing seems normal, and as details are revealed this feeling of being lost really takes over the movie. With the influence of the media and the police it all becomes a circus of deceit and heinous actions by otherwise seemingly normal human beings; well educated human beings.
The cast is perfectly chosen with Ben Affleck in the lead as a confused, but possibly murderous, husband. Rosamund Pike is the real star here as ‘Amazing’ Amy Dunne, the prolific writer who can do no wrong. She takes on a complex, and at times, frightening role of a woman damaged in ways I never saw coming. She is eerily good and every moment she is on the screen is fascinating and highly engaging. There is unease throughout and by the end it’s apparent that won’t change. This doesn’t exactly have the most cathartic ending and, because it passed on a predictable end, Gone Girl is pristine, phenomenal work in every way. If you love Fincher’s work then Gone Girl will truly make you happy and fulfilled. All I can say now is I can’t wait to see it again.
Rated R For: a scene of bloody violence, some strong sexual content/nudity, and language
Run Time: 149 minutes
After Credits Scene: None
Starring: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, Carrie Coon, Kim Dickens, Tyler Perry
Directed By: David Fincher
Out of 5 Nerdskulls
Story: 5/ Acting: 5/ Directing: 5/ Visuals: 4.5
OVERALL: 5 Nerdskulls
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