A thriller done correctly will create a movie-going experience unlike any other. Not only does Gone Girl work- it skyrockets past expectations, especially my own. We have just entered awards season, and I firmly stand by the fact that Gone Girl is without a doubt going to be one to top out of all the other movies racing for awards attention. Gone Girl is a master class in what a thriller should be, with a cast who knocks it out of the park thanks to the articulate direction of David Fincher.
To dig into more than a basic synopsis would be a disservice to anyone seeing this movie with fresh eyes. The story is about the disappearance of Amy Dunne (Rosamund Pike) and the quest of her husband, Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck), and the rest of the state to try and locate the missing person. Of course, the plot isn’t nearly this simple.
Rosamund Pike. If you don’t know or aren’t familiar with this woman, you sure will be after the viewing of this film. Without giving it away, Pike delivers an absolutely show-stopping performance as Amy Dunne. Her character has a lot of depth, and is responsible for what makes the film stand out in not only her filmography, but also David Fincher’s. Ben Affleck, who has really been bringing his A+ game to his craft over the last few years, is nothing short of terrific on screen. Ben’s portrayal of his character makes you feel a lot of ways, which play so well to his strengths. There was not a weak link in the cast. Neil Patrick Harris and Tyler Perry turn in performances that are wonderful steps away from their usual repertoires. Audiences should now welcome some more range from both of them; I’d very much like to see them stretch their dramatic talents in the near future.
Of course a crucial element to what makes this film work is the creative and fresh direction that director David Fincher brings to all of his projects. Fincher’s signature strengths very much came into play here and it’s what made him the dream choice for the director of this film. The writer of the novel that the story is based on, Gillian Flynn, also wrote the screenplay for the film. I haven’t read the book, and I’m glad I didn’t before seeing the film so the twists and turns were as exciting and shocking as they were. The only thing I didn’t particularly love about Gone Girl was its ending. I felt it could have a more powerful endnote, and it dragged a bit during the last 25 or so minutes.
Gone Girl is one of those movies that will stick with you long after you leave the theater. If you go into it spoiler-free, you will be engrossed in the film from the get-go (pacing in this film is great considering the near two and a half hour run time). The messages and themes will keep you thinking, and that is a huge accomplishment for any piece of art. I highly recommend checking this out. However, for the full experience I would recommend not digging into spoilers or even more detailed summaries of the film. Go in fresh, and prepare for a movie-going experience you won’t soon forget.
Montclair State | New Jersey