My second review this week is on yet another book translated into a movie. In what is sure to be the leading movie in the box office this weekend, this next film is all about drama, suspense, and thrills. Pre opening reviews showed promise for this thriller, most critics stating how good the production of this film is. Can it be true? Have we actually achieved another good rendition of a book? I’ll do my best to not spoil everything, as I review Gone Girl.
In a thriller, we expect a certain quality to hook us into the tale. Unfortunately, many movies either go so extreme that the story is ridiculous, or lose our interest because they can’t keep the flames alive. Not the case in Gone Girl. This story grabs your attention from the get go, forgoing a prolonged introduction and diving right into the scene at hand. We’ve all been hooked into movies with missing people, the inquisitive mind wondering if that person is alive and what nightmare they are going through. In addition to this curiosity, Gone Girl does something else that keeps you into the madness; it slowly reveals the aspects of the plot. Scene by scene we are treated to another piece of the puzzle that sets up the history of the characters and the secrets they hold. The order to which they present is logical and strategically planned, culminating in a mass of scenes that are well designed and emotional. For this reviewer, all the scenes made sense, and all of them were relevant to the story, a thing that is very rare to see these days. Of course the brilliance of this movie is the changes in direction this movie takes. Not too drastic a turn, Gone girl’s plot elements are fantastic for keeping you involved, changing up just enough to keep things interesting all around. I think what I loved the most is the cleverness behind the entire movie and the strategic plot development that takes place. Those who have read the book know what I’m talking about, but for those who haven’t I assure you that a majority will be pleased.
Of course the drama is only one aspect of this movie, in truth Gone Girl’s tale is truly brought to life by the acting. Ben Affleck surprised me greatly in this film, for once not annoying me with his choice of style. Young Affleck plays the part of sociopathic disturbance quite well, bringing about a quiet intensity and intense edge. What I thought would be a rather boring role was a surprise with the emotional roller coaster his character goes through. Sad, angry, mortified, all of these qualities are nicely mixed together in his performance, and well acted to the point where I believe he is this character. Playing his opposite is Rosamund Pike who also surprised me in this role. Pike’s sexy voice is seductive, smooth and elegant yet strong enough to induce doubt in the relationship. She also did a great job playing a character I really hated, the flashbacks of her enough to drive me crazy and define her as the five letter word for a female dog. Pike made a great commitment to her role, bringing all of her qualities to life with a natural flare and edge. Tyler Perry steps out of his Madea dress, and back into the serious role as he plays the ace attorney. No surprise, Perry is good at playing the stereotypical expert lawyer, filled with arrogance and overzealous discipline to keep the game of strategy going.
However there are a few things about this movie I didn’t necessarily like. First thing is some of the over the top dark moments. I appreciate the dark humor in this movie, the movie showing the fickleness of humans one of the most entertaining aspects. Yet, they overstep their boundaries in a few scenes, going into the land of the demented and gruesome in some of the characters behaviors. One scene in particular is rather graphic, the blood covering the scene in a rather disturbing display. Those who love such an edge, such as what is seen in Game of Thrones, will be desensitized to this madness, but others want to be prepared for the carnage. A second weakness is the length of the movie. Again I state that all of the info presented fit well into the movie, and most if not all was needed. Did it need to be over 2 hours long though? I don’t think so. At times you don’t feel the length of the movie, but there are some points that bring the fatigue on. Some editing would have been welcomed, but I can live with the extra scenes if I had to. Finally the language is not my favorite either. I know I’m a bit sensitive when it comes to language, but this movie said a word that I can’t stand, and even though it is completely appropriate, it still gets me a little bit.
Overall Gone Girl is a fantastic tale, filled with an engaging story that keeps you on your toes. Fantastic acting helps bring the world to life and the dark elements to it are more than welcome. However, it is almost a two and half hour investment and a bit long winded at points. Worth a trip to the theater? I think it is, though there really isn’t any quality to this movie that is augmented by the bigger screen. What are my scores? Find out below:
Movie Overall: 8.5-9.0