"Shhhhhh... lalalalalalala I'm not listening, I'm not listening!"
"AHHHP! AHHP AHHP AHHP! Don't say another word, you will not ruin this for me!"
All of the above are common phrases you will hear when you begin to try to talk about David Fincher's latest film Gone Girl, an adaptation of Gillian Flynn's ubiquitous, bestselling novel of 2012. I couldn't go anywhere on vacation without seeing a copy of it in a tourist's hands, that sable cover with wisps of a woman's hair taunting me to come and pick it up. It's length alone intimidated me. So when I heard critics and people online saying "How can you NOT have heard of all the plot twists?" I just cupped my hands over my uncultured hears and pressed the red X at the top of the window. I was not having this movie ruined for me.
And thats why I'm sympathetic with you, the reader, who may be going through my exact same plight. But even if you're not at all familiar with Flynn's source material, I'm betting you're pretty familiar with Ben Affleck, who's gonna be playing Aquaman or something like that in a couple of years. Critics of Affleck were pretty much silenced after Argo picked up a trio of Oscars, and the film's director David Fincher is one of the most respected in the industry. Together, with an admittedly odd cast featuring Madea, Barney Stinson and...Rosamund Pike (?) they actually create what is easily one of the best movies of the year and another Affleck movie which will surely get some Academy Awards love come later this year.
|Get your speech ready|
You probably know the basic, spoiler-free plot summary by now: Nick's (Affleck) wife Amy goes missing, and he's the one suspected of murdering her. The plot doesn't reinvent the wheel (will, not til the second half at least) but what makes this so wickedly entertaining is Fincher's touch. He has the perfect eye for lighting, the film, like The Social Network and "House of Cards" is the spot-on level of darkness, lending the film a noir tone. It never takes itself too seriously, there's always some black humor sprinkled throughout, because that's what you need to do to cope with something of this magnitude. Fincher's attitude towards the media is scathing but real: Nancy Grace certainly gets a send-up in the movie and I couldn't be happier, maybe she'll take it down a notch or two now. His fingerprints are all over it, and you don't need a wisecracking detective to figure that out.
If Boyhood was the beginning of Oscar movies in 2014, Gone Girl is surely the beginning of Oscar season. I was enchanted the whole way, completely boggled by some aspects of the film, and overall thoroughly impressed. Don't expect Gone Girl to vanish come awards season.
Rating: 4/4 stars