Gone Girl

Gone Girl ★★★★½

Whoa...

What the hell...

It starts off as just another crime thriller. But it does so on purpose. And then, without warning, it becomes something unlike anything you've ever seen. You view Rosamund Pike -- the wife, the "abductee" -- as a victim. You come to love her and in turn to hate Ben Affleck -- the husband, the adulterous "murderer". But then, just like that, everything flip flops. You learn inconceivable details about the case and your entire point of view is shot to shit. You learn that the wife isn't all that she appears, you realize that she deceived you along with everyone else. You witness the wife slowly showing her incredibly damaged psyche -- you realize her psychopathy. You see it in her eyes. In the way she moves. Everything she does from that point on further cements your belief that she is, in fact, completely crazy. But, unlike generic crime thrillers, no one is brought to justice. No one learns the whole truth. We aren't given a happy ending. Just an ending -- one that leaves you confused and worried and in complete longing to know what will happen, how this "couple" will continue on with their lives.

Genius. This film is genius.

It is acted with utter perfection. Most brilliant of all is Rosamund Pike. She forces you to feel what she feels. She conveys the character's emotional state without skipping a beat -- she does so with such skill that she doesn't even have to speak to inform you of her feelings, all you have to do is look in her eyes. But Pike uses her unique voice to further convey her chilling and mesmerizing persona. She forces you to love her, then she makes you question everything you know, and then she goes crazy and scares the complete shit out of you. And she does all this with such ease that you almost wonder if Rosamund Pike was, in fact, acting at all. Definitely, without a doubt deserving of an Oscar. Ben Affleck also does a spectacular job. His performance isn't award-worthy, but he is very convincing and off-putting in exactly the right way. I am now completely convinced that he isn't the shithole of an actor that he used to be. It was nice to see Neil Patrick Harris perform so well in a serious role -- a dramatic one. I mean, we already knew that he could be comical without a problem, but this film really opens up a whole other door of opportunity for him. Same goes for Tyler Perry; we see that he can be convincing and serious in a role that doesn't involve a fat suit. Carol Coon, an unknown up until now, also does a fantastic job and definitely has a breakout role here. The combined skill of all the actors in this film is astonishing.

The story is mesmerizing. Disturbingly brilliant. Twisted and dark. And the direction and cinematography are beyond words -- they set the mood and convey the tone with impeccable ease. In addition, the chilling composition aids flawlessly in the endlessly building tension.

While I wasn't a big fan of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, this film really makes me see David Fincher in a whole new light -- a wonderful, awe-inspiring light.

I still can't stop thinking about it. Several hours after the fact. And that, my friends, is the mark of a truly remarkable film. And the ending is undeniably one of the most chilling around.

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