“Gone Girl” is a difficult movie to discuss without spoiling the second half which is where a lot of really shines. Based on the novel by Gillian Flynn, it almost seemed impossible to adapt but with the right director and cast, the translation from book to screen is nearly flawless. Just when you think you know where its going, another door opens and you start to realize this is not the direction you thought it would go into.
The basic plot involves Ben Affleck playing Nick Dunne, a man who is going through tough times with his wife Amy (Rosamund Pike) to the point their marriage feels unjust and false. But all that changes on their 5th anniversary when Amy is missing with a kidnap at play. No sooner, Nick is unsure how to take this news as the whole town and eventually the nation starts to grow suspicious of him. If that wasn’t enough, he has to deal with the multitude of clues left behind for an anniversary scavenger hunt that just might hold the answer to her disappearance.
And chances are if I continued any further, it would ruin a lot of good surprises. A lot of what makes “Gone Girl” unique is the second act and to the end. Your in a constant struggle wondering what kind of people Amy and Nick are that when the answers start to fall into place, we get the idea and start to fear for the both of them. Nick is especially an interesting character as he doesn’t know how to take the news. On one hand, his wife is missing and considering how miserable their lives were, he should feel happy in a sense. On the other hand, he gets pinned easily as a possible suspect in the disappearance and might have murdered her. With so much at stake, you just wonder if he really did or is there a sense of innocence.
Again, I can’t say for sure or else it would spoil a lot of good twists and turns. And that’s what makes Gone Girl great to watch from beginning to end. You want to see where this all leads. You want to see if your right or wrong. Not too long ago, I saw 50 Shades of Grey in theaters and I kept wondering what this would be like if someone like David Fincher directed it and exploited the tragic and abusive side of relationships to make it a stronger film. In fact, ironic seeing he directed this movie and does a great job.
David Fincher often looks at themes of broken relationships, isolation and sometimes gender roles. A lot of that is present here even considering one character’s actions feel almost diabolical in a sense. Without giving too much away, this character really makes you feel they could be the next Shakespeare villain just based on their actions alone. There’s also Nick’s personal want for being alone and when he gets this, its not the way he expected it. Now, everyone is after him when all he wishes is his peace and to be understood. He’s not a perfect husband but he tries.
To me, this is our generation’s “Psycho.” Its well acted, well shot and very on the end of your seat. Again, a lot of this movie depends on your attitude towards the second act. It can either come as a big shock or just more of an interesting twist. Another factor relies on if you read the actual novel or not. If you did, I say it follows the story fairly close with some minor changes here and there. If you haven’t read it, then prepare yourself for on hell of a roller coaster. By the time its done, you wish it wouldn’t end. And that is the essence of good film making.