As the films looking for award nominations are unleashed upon us in the coming months, I could not imagine a better film to herald in the award season than “Gone Girl.”
The film, yet another book adaptation from director David Fincher, follows a husband after his wife mysteriously disappears. From the onset of this discovery, things do not add up to a simple opened-and-closed case. Nick Dunne and his wife Amy seemed to have a perfect marriage, but over the course of the film, it is revealed that things in their fairytale marriage were not as they seemed.
As the days of Amy Dunne’s disappearance turn to weeks, the media turns their attention toward Nick. From this increased media attention, the film manages to perfectly satire the media circus that takes place around high profile crimes.
Over the course of the film, the plot takes the viewer through multiple twists and sudden turns, while managing to maintain momentum.
-Despite being over two hours in length, I never felt the film dragged or lost steam. The film is also enhanced by the pervasive atmosphere that Fincher and company are able to create. This atmosphere is where the directing prowess of Fincher truly shines, as he is able to permeate an air of suspense that hovers over the film throughout its duration.
The acting in “Gone Girl” is simply superb. Lead actress Rosamund Pike delivers an incredible performance that has already gotten Internet forums demanding an Oscar. Ben Affleck also delivers a fine performance as Nick Dunne, one of the best of his career in my opinion. The supporting cast is also great, particularly a very enjoyable performance from Tyler Perry, which was very surprising given his most famous role of Madea.
The film also benefits from the incredible score work done by frequent Fincher collaborators Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. Reznor’s past as leader of the abrasive industrial music group Nine Inch Nails is exemplified during the tense scenes as the duo uses dissonant and abrasive textures to heighten the anxiety. This is the most prevalent during an unforgettable scene involving Neil Patrick Harris and Pike.
Despite all of the stellar work done elsewhere in the film, I was consistently blown away by the cinematography work done in “Gone Girl.” Nearly every scene is composed beautifully from a visual perspective. The use of lighting and colors also add immensely to the feeling of unease and mystery that covers the entirety of “Gone Girl.”
While there are still many films left to be seen before the Academy Awards, “Gone Girl” has made a definitive stand as a contender to be reckoned with. No other film I have seen this year has been as masterfully composed or nearly as interesting.
This film is David Fincher’s masterpiece, and it will take many repeat viewings before I feel that I have unraveled all of its secrets.