“WHERE’S YOUR WIFE NICK?” Find out in our review of David Fincher’s latest, Gone Girl!
Gone Girl (2014)
Starring: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry, Neil Patrick Harris, Carrie Coon
Directed By: David Fincher
David Fincher has done it again. The director of Se7en, The Social Network, and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo has turned in another amazing movie that, when it’s all said and done, will definitely be put on numerous “Best of the Year” lists come year’s end. Adapted from Gillian Flynn’s novel (from her own screenplay no less) Gone Girl is a searing look into marriage, the lies men and women tell one another, and the media. It’s tense, shocking, and surprisingly funny as well.
I’ll keep the spoilers to a minimum, but I will tell you that I did read Flynn’s novel last year. Even though I knew all of the major plot beats, it didn’t lessen my enjoyment of the film at all. Gone Girl focuses on Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck), a New York City magazine writer who is forced to move back to his hometown in Missouri to care for his dying mother. His city girl wife, Amy (Rosamund Pike), comes with him, which naturally leads to a lot of tense moments for the couple. On the morning of their fifth anniversary, Amy goes missing. All signs are pointing to Nick, who swears up and down that he didn’t murder his wife. But if he didn’t murder her, where did she go?
This question takes the audience on an incredible ride, and Fincher relishes every moment he can to skewer the media’s fascination with real crime stories. In fact, these moments are some of the best of the film. Affleck’s Nick is at his most relatable when he’s trying to go places and is being hounded by the media. When he sneaks a peak out of his window and sees media van after media van, the look of exasperation on his face is perfect, and Affleck , who has first hand experience with this kind of media attention, is expertly cast.
I can’t go any further without mentioning Rosamund Pike, who delivers an absolute career-defining performance. Without spoiling anything, I think it’s safe to say that we’ll be seeing a lot more of her in the years to come, and I wouldn’t be surprised if we see her name getting thrown around come Oscar time. The rest of the Gone Girl cast is absolutely phenomenal. The Leftovers’ Carrie Coon absolutely incredible as Nick’s twin sister Margot, and Neil Patrick Harris delivers a wonderfully creepy turn as one of Amy’s old flames. Hell, this movie is so good that even Tyler Perry is awesome as the smarmy lawyer Nick hires.
Gone Girl isn’t going to be for everyone. That was apparent from the varied responses the film got as I was leaving the theater. But it’s easily one of the most compelling movies I’ve seen this year, and one of the best book to movie adaptations of all time. I’ll even go so far as to say that it’s one of David Fincher’s best movies. Gone Girl is a film that stays with you and surprises you even if you’ve read the book. Bravo, Mr. Fincher.