If you have read the book, you know how the story ends and speaking about certain things in the movie will not spoil anything. If, like me, you have not read the book, then certain things will ruin the movie for you.
Even with this hurdle, I still want to talk about Gone Girl.
The reason is simple, It is a excellent movie that I did not enjoy. I know that this may not make sense, but stay with me. I write about things that I enjoy that aren’t good. I also write about movies that are good and I enjoy. I would be doing my audience a disservice if I ignored a good movie that I didn’t enjoy because maybe some of you out there may like it.
Gone Girl is the story of Nick Dunne, played by Ben Affleck and Amy Dunne Played by Rosamund Pike. The story begins with Nick being called home after going to work one morning to discover Amy missing and the signs of a struggle. Amy is famous for being the main character of a series of books written by her parents. This event triggers a nation wide movement to find her. What follows is the story of everything spiraling out of control as the eye of suspicion falls upon the distant husband.
The performances in this movie are excellent. One of the problems I tend to have with Ben Affleck is that he comes of as disconnected from whatever part he plays. In this movie, this disconnectedness is essential to the role and makes him the best man for the part. Rosamund Pike’s performance is just fantastic. She has to maintain two almost diametrically opposed facades and she does this with aplomb. It would be easy for her character to come across as stark-raving mad and she avoids this trap as well. I am a fan of Tyler Perry and Neil Patrick Harris and though their roles in this movie are small, they turn is stellar performances as always.
The movie uses an interesting storytelling device. Amy has a diary. We get scenes from the diary interlaced with the action that is occurring. This sets up a set of expectations and then provides a new set of expectations. I have seen it done before but never so well.
The acting in the movie is stellar, the cinematography is on point, and the storytelling is top-notch. Despite all of these things coming together to create an excellent movie, I didn’t enjoy it. It has several pieces that I would expect to enjoy but they don’t come together in a way that hooks me. In thinking about the movie, I would almost call it Suburban Noir. It has the that element of noir where there are no good guys in sight but covers it with the suburban veneer of striving to keep up appearances at all costs. This, though done excellently and with flair, just leaves me cold.
Gone Girl is an a good movie with great acting and wonderful production values. It has early Oscar buzz which it definitely deserves. If the idea of Suburban Noir appeals to you, give this movie a viewing. Otherwise, wait for the video as it is worth watching but not at full cinema pricing.