“Gone Girl” an innovative take on drama and horror

Oscars nomination: Best Actress (Rosamund Pike)

A man strokes a woman’s hair. Conflicting thoughts race through his mind as he wonders, “What are you thinking?” and the audience can’t help but think the same. “Gone Girl’s” release was highly anticipated, both negatively and positively. Many people expected the film to be automatically Oscar-worthy, while others were nervous because of the difficulty in creating an accurate movie interpretation of the original novel. Director David Fincher managed to pull it off spectacularly with the October 2014 film, “Gone Girl.”

“Gone Girl” author Gillian Flynn received rave reviews on her 2012 novel, garnering interest in creating a movie adaptation. The book was described as “totally engrossing” and “cleverly plotted,” reader reviews say, and the compliments have translated to the film. “Gone Girl” is a haunting mystery recounting the difficult life of Nick Dunne, played by Ben Affleck, who’s wife Amy, played by Rosamund Pike, has gone missing. After Amy’s disappearance, the plot of the movie focuses on . But, as the film progresses, the details of the relationship are revealed and leave us asking: who can we trust?

The series of smoothly transitioned flashbacks are a solid example of the stellar directing by Fincher. Known for movies such as “The Social Network” and “Fight Club,” Fincher artfully displays his consistent trademarks of cool lighting, darkly modern sets and non-linear plot. Because of the seamless transitions between the perspectives of different characters, the audience is kept focused and thinking. Each slightly different angle extends the insight of the story and keeps the audience in suspense. The film seems to focus on staying one step ahead of the audience, trailing us along behind the unfolding story.

Rosamund Pike’s performance as Amy Dunne is chilling. Because of her mental complexity, Amy is a difficult character to play, but Pike manages to slip flawlessly into place. She summons immense depth to the character, exuding a dark, surreptitious atmosphere. Ben Affleck’s performance as Nick is intentionally withdrawn, bringing an air of suspicion and mistrust that leaves the audience hesitant to jump to conclusions.

With unique, mysterious character development and a plotline that chills to the core, “Gone Girl” deserves its Oscar nod. Fincher’s spectacular casting choices make it polished and enthralling. The film radiates confidence and forces the audience to leave doubtfully pondering the underlying theme: what do I really know?