Gone_GirlI was not in a rush to go out and see Gone Girl because not only had I read the book and would know every twist that was coming, but I hadn’t bought into some of those surprises or liked the ending. The film directed by David Fincher stays true to the book with some minor alterations necessary in order to keep the movie from running ridiculously long.

Like most book to film adaptations, there is quite a bit of nuance that is lost. I won’t give specific examples so as not to give anything away. This much you already know from the title–Gone Girl delves into the disappearance of Amy Dunne, the beautiful wife of the equally attractive Nick Dunne. The book explores in much more detail and more effectively, the arc of Nick and Amy’s relationship.

Despite the less layered approach of the film, it does work as a smart, suspense thriller. It is also spot on in its depiction of how our 24-hour news cycle exploits, sensationalizes and ultimately dehumanizes cases of missing persons especially those of women and children. Missi Pyle does a wicked interpretation of a certain “crusading” news personality whose initials are NG. Tyler Perry as go to defense lawyer Tanner Bolt proves he can be funny without a fat suit as well as charming. And, all around acting MVP Kim Dickens is made for the part of detective Boney.

Ben Affleck doesn’t quite pull off the role of Nick who is used to falling back on his looks and manly dude charisma. It’s a tricky role that requires Affleck to play a selfish, insensitive man who can appear to be blank yet still reveal the underlying conflict beneath the smooth persona. Rosamund Pike nails Amy, the golden girl whose life doesn’t live up to the fairy tale she tries to construct.

If you haven’t read the book, then I recommend that you do see this leanly paced, suspense drama that may make anyone with a significant other wonder how well he or she truly know the person they believe they share their lives with.

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