If there’s nothing that’ll keep you on the edge of your seat, a missing-person-crime-thriller by David Fincher will definitely do the trick.
With notable, unforgettable credits under his name such as Zodiac, Seven, Fight Club and more recently-ish The Social Network, Fincher has taken Gillian Flynn’s novel down the same path as becoming the highlight of a very heated discussion. It’s safe to say that Flynn had already paved the way, but this adaptation evidently had Fincher’s name written all over it.
Rosamund Pike plays Amy Dunne, America’s sweetheart in literature, married to a fellow journalist Nick Dunne, played by Ben Affleck. Throughout the film, we are introduced to flash back memories of their marriage, and Amy’s thoughts and recollections she held within diary entries of what married life to Nick Dunne was like. As any marriage, it’s not a walk in the park, there are many ups and downs to live though and the strength of ones marriage will determine the future of it. After sitting through the “honeymoon stage” of their marriage, things begin to get rough. Because of the recession, they both lose their jobs, then end up moving back to his hometown where he manages a bar with his twin sister. In the present, Amy goes missing on their 5th wedding anniversary through mysterious circumstances and because of his laid back, calm approach, the weird circumstances surrounding Amy’s disappearance and the what seems to be terrible marriage they were having, people start to talk and indirectly point the finger. Did Nick Dunne murder his wife?
Gone Girl is no doubt clever. Fincher and Flynn manage to keep every twist and turn and untwists interesting and kept well in place. They take the story in many different directions to say the least and it really does keep your mind-boggling trying to figure out if you’ve solved the mystery or not. But as said before, Gone Girl keeps you interested at every point, especially as a film that’s over two and a half hours long. It’s so confidently intellectual and thrilling that it marinades you into the story. Amy’s fate is actually revealed halfway through the film, refreshing the plot and acting as a stage entrance for the development of new characters. So there’s no point turning up at the end of the film if you just want to know the truth and start spreading those awful spoilers all over the web.
Affleck plays the part of Nick Dunne emotionally very well. His character is the one that keeps you edge. He’s very convincing at times when pleading his innocence, but then lets his guard down very easily to keep twisting your thoughts and conviction against him.
The stand out role definitely came from Rosamund Pike. Her portrayal of Amy Dunne was simply outstanding. Her specific yet raw and dark monologues will get you feeling uncomfortable to know someone is saying this out loud, especially as a female viewer. But it’s this raw intensity that makes you want to learn more. An unforgettable character with more twisting conflicts as not only a wife, but as a woman too.
Moving slightly away from the two main characters, other characters that really do help make the story relative and act as the audiences reference point are Nick’s twin sister Margo (Carrie Coon), the very sceptical Detective Rhonda Boney (Kim Dickens) and the super funny lawyer Tanner Bolt (Tyler Perry) who definitely played the part of being the man you pay a bucket load of money to, to help out when your partner goes missing.
One character that really catches your attention with his mysterious absences is Ex-boyfriend Desi Collings played by Neil Patrick Harris. His character was very intriguing yet more could have been done with him. There’s this creepy, mysterious whiff he brings when on-screen, but in comparison to the novel, there’s a little more to his character that they didn’t seem to bring to the big screen, which really would have made a little more sense and given his character a bit more depth, especially with Harris playing the this perfect role. But for what was given to him, Harris never fails to give a convincing performance.
Gone Girl is quite difficult to write about without giving anything away. It’s like the 21st century version of the Sixth Sense where you just have to watch the film to find out the truth. You can keep guessing and running around in circles about what you think may happen but you’ll never really know until you watch it. Fincher is great at throwing you off-balance at the right times to only drag you back into your original thought numerous times. Gone Girl has placed its sturdy, suspenseful, creepy/crazy spine in Hollywood and really does demonstrate the idea that marriage is not a walk in the park.