Review: Gone Girl

Gone GirlDavid Fincher is at it again with his new thriller/mystery Gone Girl (rated R), based on the novel by Gillian Flynn (who also wrote the screenplay). The film follows Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) who comes home on the morning of his fifth wedding anniversary to find his home broken in to and his wife missing. Once the police get involved it becomes clear that not everything is at seems and Nick Dunne may or may not be telling the truth.

Having read the novel, I was curious to see how it would be translated to film and I’m glad to say I wasn’t disappointed. Gone Girl is one of this year’s best thrillers and one of the most well crafted movies of the year.

The film has Fincher’s signature dark, color-muted look to it and features a score from his now regular collaborators Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross (who won an Oscar for their score for Fincher’s The Social Network). The score isn’t exactly memorable in the sense that I couldn’t hum a single bar for you, if you asked, but it serves the story perfectly. It’s haunting in some scenes and adds to the tension in others. It’s a soundtrack I may have to look in to purchasing.

Ben Affleck gives one of his best performances but the real scene-stealer is Rosamund Pike, who plays Nick’s missing wife (mostly seen in flashback). Her performance is Oscar worthy and I hope she gets the acclaim she deserves.

David Fincher is one of my favorite directors, with a notorious shooting style (remember how he shot the opening scene for The Social Network 99 times? Apparently that’s normal for him.) but his methods work for him. He’s crafted a near perfect thriller that races through it’s 150 minute run time. Fans of the book (like me) won’t be disappointed and folks who haven’t read the book are in for a real treat. I almost wish I hadn’t read the book so that I could have experienced the unfolding mystery for the first time in the theater. Gone Girl marks the beginning of Oscar season and it starts it off with a bang.

I give it an A.

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