Amy Dunne has gone missing and her husband Nick, along with the rest of the gossip-hungry United States, is desperate to find her. But with little to no clue as to the whereabouts of Amy Dunne (Rosamund Pike), fingers start to point to the case’s most likely suspect, Amy’s own husband, Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck).
Based on the novel by Gillian Flynn, Gone Girl is a modern thriller with twists not much unlike a warped melodrama. Although the mystery of Amy’s disappearance stands as the film’s centerpiece, it’s the eroding marriage of Nick and Amy that lies in its core.
From the outside, Nick and Amy live a charmed life. Attractive, stable and generally well liked, it’s their seemingly indistinct relationship that allows them to blend among the rest of marital suburbia. But when Amy suddenly goes missing, what is eventually unearthed is more akin to a horror novel than a love story.
“Till death do us part,”goes the clichéd wedding vow. Unfortunately for Nick and Amy, that’s seemingly where their marriage is going.
Putting on appearances
Gone Girl is an extreme depiction of a crumbling marriage. While the motions of this dark thriller are undeniably exaggerated, and often difficult to accept with a level head, there’s a perverse truth to the decaying relationship between Nick and Amy.
Once the years have worn down the wedding bands, all that’s left are two people putting on appearances. It’s a cynical and awfully pessimistic view of marriage, and one that runs counterpoint to the usual “love conquers all” ethos of Hollywood.
The film shifts unsteadily between Nick’s present time point-of-view and Amy’s seemingly disembodied journal entries. But while the film’s structure can be jarring, it’s all part of an elaborate “he-said, she-said”account of a rotten relationship.
Ben Affleck’s naturally smug portrayal of the seemingly cold Nick Dunne works to add a layer off suspicion in the unraveling mystery. But it is Rosamund Pike’s uncanny ability to shift from fragile wife to cunning femme fatale that makes her character as difficult to read as her husband.
Warning: past this point, there are mild spoilers, particularly if you have not yet read the book. Click the button below if you would like to continue.
Gone Girl is the cruel aftermath of happily ever after. But it is also an expertly crafted thriller that relies on very little spectacle to get its point across. It’s a cold and often callous depiction of marriage, but when love is gone, all that’s left is blood. – Rappler.com
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