GONE GIRL takes the battle of the sexes to scorched-earth warfare level, elevating the case of a missing wife into an epic scale national drama, with smart writing, neat twists, a host of sharply etched characters and typically razor-sharp direction from nerve-shredder David Fincher.
Ben Affleck finds his wife gone in an apparent kidnapping, with cryptic clues leading him a not-merry chase, as the police (and audience) begin to doubt his innocence. National media chooses sides, ala the disgusting Nancy Grace TV tabloid milieu, and then things get thrown in reverse. No more plot revealed; watch and see.
It looks great, it moves well, there’s wit, sex, danger and satire, with enough to cheer for or hiss at from every section of the relationship bleachers. Longish at 149 minutes, but it holds. Excellent acting from Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, Carrie Coon (to be watched), Kim Dickens (always a treat), Tyler Perry, Patrick Fugit, David Clennon and Lisa Baynes. Missi Pyle does a killer sendup of the Grace-type viper. Script by Gillian Flynn, from her bestselling novel.
Strong reviews, with a tiresome, predictable feminist backlash: some people can ruin a cupcake. A huge financial hit, something like $368,000,000, with a Best Actress Oscar nomination for the luminous Ms. Pike. With Sela Ward, Emily Ratjkowski (OMG!) and Casey Wilson.