Starring: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry
Director: David Fincher
Running Time: 144 mins
Gone Girl is an American film about a man whose wife mysteriously disappears, and the case becomes a major national story. In the process, the media and the police begin to turn on the husband and suspect that might not be as innocent as he makes out.
What a film this is! It’s a fascinating crime mystery full of totally unpredictable and unexpected twists and turns, it’s got some absolutely incredible performances in it, the directing and cinematography is fantastic, and strangely, it’s a really fun, exciting watch despite being thematically very dark and depressing.
That was the one thing that made me love this the most, the fact that it was so weirdly enjoyable to watch. Don’t get me wrong, this film is still a very gruesome and dark one, and it really chills you to the bone at certain points, but there are two reasons why I have to say that this is still a really fun film to watch.
Firstly, the story is just so unpredictable. It’s a real treat to just be taken along on a ride like this, a twisting and turning adventure that pulls you in the completely opposite direction to what you’d expect at every juncture, which is just so entertaining because you just can’t wait to see what’s going to happen next at every turning point (and believe me, there are many) in this film.
The weirdest thing about the story is that it manages to salvage a plot that looks like it’s going to be finishing on numerous occasions. At many points throughout, when I saw the film keep going after what I expected to be the end, I was sitting there thinking: ‘How are they going to keep this thing going?’. Well, they not only keep the story going absolutely intriguingly, but also build on it, make it even better and bring in whole new parameters that make it an even more unpredictable and exciting watch.
Secondly, the whole premise of so many of the key plot points in this film are just so extreme that they’re almost hilarious. Obviously, I won’t reveal those points, but there are so many insanely over-the-top things about this film that mean you don’t take it so seriously as a real story, but see it much more as a crazed, messed-up fiction, and that really helped me to enjoy what I would have thought would be a really gritty film a whole lot more.
Despite that, however, this film is still pretty serious in its underlying themes. It looks at how people are a mystery, the idea of reality, fabricated reality and perceived reality, as well as talking about the media and its power over the lives of ordinary people in cases like this, which I found absolutely fascinating to look into as the film went on.
Finally, there’s some excellent work done by the cast and crew in this film. Ben Affleck puts in a really strong and convincing central performance here, the mysterious Rosamund Pike is also a pleasure to behold, and the rest of the supporting cast all hold this film up to be even stronger. Meanwhile, director David Fincher does very well in bringing together the darkness of this story and the entertainment element that he’s done so well in the past, whilst cinematographer Jeff Cronenweth also helps to strengthen that combination.
So, overall, this gets an 8.9, because it’s not only a fascinating and dark crime story, but it’s a hugely entertaining thrill ride that encapsulates you all the way through.