'Gone Girl' movie review - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

'Gone Girl' movie review


*Spoiler alert: Readers beware. This review contains some spoilers. 

Nick (Ben Affleck) and Amy Dunne (Rosamund Pike), hit by the economy, move from New York City to small-town, North Carthage Missouri to care for his ailing mother. This sets up the downward spiral that becomes their relationship in “Gone Girl.”

Crews spent about six weeks shooting scenes in Cape Girardeau, while many movie-goers will recognize the Bill Emerson Memorial Bridge (which shows up at least eight times), the Common Pleas Courthouse gazebo, Old Federal Courthouse, The Bar, and other notable Heartland settings, North Carthage is not Cape Girardeau. Cape Girardeau is just another actor playing a role. North Carthage is a run-down, violent city with a homeless problem. Leave it to director David Fincher to find Cape's flaws to craft the dark story.

With titles like “Seven,” and “Fight Club” already in his repertoire, Fincher is a natural choice to give visual life to the characters crafted by Gillian Flynn. He's able to stay true to the dark subject matter, while simultaneously adding light-hearted moments. In fact, the film is surprisingly funny, at times. But the laughs come at appropriate times. “Gone Girl” knows when to be serious and when it's ok to add a chuckle.

The story weaves back and forth through time, telling the tale of Nick and Amy's relationship while following the investigation into Amy's disappearance, with Nick the number one suspect.

“Gone Girl” drags you down and exposes the desperation created by loneliness. Rosamund Pike is behind the wheel, dragging the audience through hoops of trust and distrust. If you didn't know her name before “Gone Girl,” you certainly won't forget it after seeing her portrayal of Amy Dunne.

Ben Affleck is charming and in his element. It's easy to believe him as Nick, because the two have a lot in common. Nick is confident, and knows how to get folks on his side, even when they wish he'd just go away. Affleck certainly knows how to be resilient. He's gone from Hollywood star to a near has-been and back to stardom. Nick faces similar challenges.

Other than Pike, Neil Patrick Harris has the darkest role. Desi Collings Amy's ex-lover, has had 20 years to fixate on her. It's a departure for Harris, more recently known for his womanizing role on “How I Met Your Mother.” Unfortunately for the character (and subsequently the audience), Harris does not get near enough screen time in the two and a half hour film. The audience is left wanting to know more about Desi. He's obviously disturbed, and a bit of a stalker, but we're never really told why.

Underneath the exhilarating story line, the mystery crime-thriller, “Gone Girl” asks an important question: How well do we really know the people we love? Everyone has flaws, and everyone has secrets. If you put all of your trust in someone, it can lead you down a deadly path.

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