SOME TWISTY FUN WITH SUBSTANCE
MANY films enjoy exploring the murkiness below the attractive surface – the American Beauty poster tagline urged us to “look closer”, suggesting that nothing is ever what it appears.
While that particular film examined a small selection of damaged characters, Gone Girl suggests it is actually all of us who are not always genuine in our appearance.
Framed with a mystery and marriage drama narrative, Gone Girl, based on the novel by Gillian Flynn (who adapted her own work here), takes a microscope to more than just a handful of subjects.
Suburban husband Nick (Ben Affleck) returns home on his fifth wedding anniversary to find his trophy wife Amy (Rosamund Pike, delivering an astounding performance) missing with signs of an attack.
All signs point to Nick’s guilt, with Detective Rhonda Boney (Kim Dickens) and Officer Jim Gilpin (Patrick Fugit) uncovering very little to suggest otherwise.
With all cameras from every media outlet on him and his actions, Nick insists on his innocence but his behaviour does not always back it up.
It is not until the detectives find the hidden remains of Amy’s burnt diary that the real nature of the couple’s picket fence relationship comes to light. Or does it?
Director David Fincher revels in cynicism and the darkness of human nature and this story suits him.
This is one of his most thematically rich pieces: a comment on the thirsty media, trial by trashy talk show