Film Review: Gone Girl

Film

Gone Girl

David Fincher’s Gone Girl was probably one of my most anticipated films of 2014. Even though I wasn’t a fan of the book. Sadly, I wasn’t able to see Gone Girl in 2014 for fear of seeing some mutated censored version of the film. After seeing the film I’m pretty happy about my decision of avoiding seeing it in the cinemas here in Bahrain, because yes, it most definitely would have been censored!

If it’s at all possible, Gone Girl the film is a more bleak look relationships than the original source material. Well, the central relationship between Nick and Amy at least. Amy was more twisted. More single-minded than she was in the book. I put that down to a brilliant performance from Rosamund Pike. Cold, calculating and with one psychotic goal in mind. To be completely honest I wasn’t expecting much from her. This is all down to my only other memory of her in a film is Die Another Day, which is terrible all over.

Gone Girl's Amy Dunne

Rosamund Pike’s Amy Dunne is up there in top psychotic film characters.

Was it me, or was Nick Dunne made a tad more sympathetic? Was it Ben Affleck? Or perhaps for the purposes of the film there needed to be a sympathetic character. Because there certainly isn’t one in the book! Seriously, I remember reading the book and not giving a shit about any of the characters because they were all pretty despicable.

I was really interested to see how they’d tackle the first person approach of the book for the big screen. Turns out, it was handled really well. Despite this narration there was still a story unfolding not just being told.

While this isn’t David Fincher’s more beautiful films; the muted colour palette just fits the tone of the film – a certain sense of bleakness. Whether it’s looking bleak for Nick the bleak nature of relationships portrayed in the film.

Gone Girls Nick Dunne

Nick Dunne – not quite as despicable as his literary version.

Along with the cinematography Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross’ score completely moody score was perfect. Even for the moments of tension, there wasn’t the typical staccato style of score. The music was still wonderfully… smooth and totally unnerving.

Gone Girl is a great film. It’s not one I’m rushing to see again. At some point in the future I’ll pick it up again. If anything, by the end of the film I was relieved. Relieved I enjoyed it a heck of a lot more than the book and relieved that it was made by David Fincher and co. Relieved and surprised by Rosamund Pike’s performance who’s Amy pretty much made this film.

18 thoughts on “Film Review: Gone Girl

  1. Yay, I’m glad you enjoyed this more than the book! I agree that Nick was more sympathetic in the film than the movie, which disappointed me a bit. I attribute it partly to the fact that we couldn’t “hear” what went on in his head. In the novel, he has so much pent-up anger and passive-aggressiveness, and a tad of outright misogyny, under that “good guy” exterior. Affleck did a great job, but the character came across differently in the film. I think it was a deliberate choice on the part of the director, but I don’t know why.

    1. Oh that’s true. It’s been so long since I read the book! Duh, I feel like saying! Had there not been that more softer Nick, it definitely would have been a harder film to watch with fewer characters to have any empathy for.

    1. Yes! Well, side penis. Still it wouldn’t have been there. Jeez… a lot of the film wouldn’t have been there if I saw it in the cinemas.

  2. I felt like the movie tried to make us identify more with Nick, and you’re probably right in mentioning that it may be Affleck that does it. They’re both awful in the book, and while he isn’t a saint in the movie, it feels more like she pushed him into the territory more. It does make for a simpler movie, though I did like it overall.

    1. That was one aspect I was really interested as to how it would be portrayed in the film – absolutely none of the characters in the book are completely despicable. It’s hard to like any of them. Even Margo. Film audiences definitely someone they can maybe root behind.

  3. This book was one I had to sluggishly force myself to read as I didn’t like any of the leads. It certainly did get more interesting half way through ( as expected) and even then did have empathy towards Nick – which I expect one would in the film as well. And while I am truly curious to see Rosamund bring Amy to life and probably do a great job, I find that I’m not necessarily in a hurry to be so damned angry again by the choices and ending. When I finished the novel the very . . bleakness of the world she created was absolutely horrifying to me. Evil shouldn’t get to win. Even if there aren’t any real “heroes”.

    1. I wasn’t a big fan of the book either for pretty much the same reason. Just terrible people! Couldn’t care less what happened to any of them really. And felt the book was terribly written – as if Gillian Flynn knew it was going to get the film treatment.

      It is a bleak film. But worth watching.

  4. I skimmed your review because I want to read the novel at some point. Bummer they censor films in Bahrain. Glad you enjoyed the “intended” version of the film! Pike showed she’s got the talent, so I hope this helps her to other interesting roles.

  5. They must’ve censored some graphic scenes, I understand you decide not to watch it there. I read that in the book Nick is more insecure, and they should put it in the movie too. Affleck was somewhere in the middle (sympathetic/guilty) which makes it vague.

  6. Great review. I love this movie and I think Pike is a flawless Amy. I think Affleck’s character was intentionally vague which works wonders for the movie. Haven’t read the book so I don’t know if this approach works better

    1. Definitely works better as I actually had an emotional attachment to someone in the film. Whereas reading the book, honestly couldn’t care what happened to any of the characters. Thanks for stopping by, Wendell!

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