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First, Mostly Rave Reviews Arrive For David Fincher’s ‘Gone Girl’

First, Mostly Rave Reviews Arrive For David Fincher's 'Gone Girl'

The countdown continues for “Gone Girl,” with the world premiere of the film this Friday at the New York Film Festival. But the buzz for that screening just got a bit louder as the week is kicking off with the first reviews for David Fincher‘s sprawling procedural (it runs 145 minutes) coming in. And for the most part, it looks like he’s delivered another winner.

Receiving mostly rave notices thus far — with some notable exceptions and criticisms — many are singing the praises of Rosamund Pike‘s performance, the twisty nature of the plot, the true surprises that unfold, and the biting look at American domestic life and marriage. However, it seems the movie didn’t quite grab every critic by the lapels, with some less drawn in to Fincher and author Gillian Flynn‘s mystery. Here’s a rundown of the early reviews, and afterwards, be sure to check out the latest TV spot for “Gone Girl.” The film opens in theaters on October 3rd.

Screen Daily: “…a standard police procedural that promptly loses momentum – all of ‘Gone Girl’s appearances proving deceptive.”

THR: “David Fincher’s film of ‘Gone Girl,’ Gillian Flynn’s twisty, nasty and sensational best-seller, is a sharply made, perfectly cast and unfailingly absorbing melodrama. But, like the director’s adaptation of another publishing phenomenon, ‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,’ three years ago, it leaves you with a quietly lingering feeling of: ‘Is that all there is?’ “

Variety: “Surgically precise, grimly funny and entirely mesmerizing…this taut yet expansive psychological thriller represents an exceptional pairing of filmmaker and material, fully expressing Fincher’s cynicism about the information age and his abiding fascination with the terror and violence lurking beneath the surfaces of contemporary American life.”

The Independent: ” ‘Gone Girl’ is so full of reversals and so laden with irony that its attempts at a ‘Husbands And Wives‘-style anatomy of a relationship under strain soon begin to founder. This isn’t an especially insightful film about what makes marriages creak but it is very entertaining and provocative one that fully justifies its lengthy running time.”

The Wrap: ” ‘Gone Girl’ will earn plenty of loud shouts of applause, awed sounds of surprise, and shocked laughter, but what makes it worthy of them is all the hushed, uneasy conversations it’s guaranteed to inspire in the long, unsettled silence to come after.”

Digital Spy: “Many stories boil down to three simple words a protagonist asks him or herself: Who am I? In ‘Gone Girl’ Fincher flips this around in dramatic fashion with Nick and Amy Dunne posing the following question to each other: Who are you? The results are sensational. ‘Gone Girl’ will rattle you to the core, get under your skin and leave you thinking about it for days.”

Indiewire: “…it’s hard to shake the notion that he could be doing something more rewarding than becoming the preeminent director of airport-novel adaptations, a trajectory that’s all the more disappointing after the trifecta of ‘Zodiac,’ ‘The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,’ and ‘The Social Network.’ Fincher likely prides himself on turning coal into diamonds at this point, but Flynn’s script can feel so retrograde at times that one wonders whether it might have been better served by a De Palma, Bigelow, or even a Verhoeven — which is to say, a filmmaker less concerned with making the lascivious seem prestigious.”

The Times: “The movie adaptation of Gone Girl opens with the lines: ‘Like a child, I picture opening her skull, unspooling her brain and sifting through it, trying to catch and pin down her thoughts. What are you thinking, Amy?’ This subtext of violence, duplicity and ambiguity pervades not just the misbegotten marriage of Amy and Nick Dunne, but David Fincher’s gripping psychological thriller.”

Time Out London: ” ‘Gone Girl’, for all its murderous overtones, plays like a sad romantic drama – until the thing happens that no fair critic should reveal, and it becomes unlike anything you’ve ever seen: a sick, dizzying satire of marital mindfulness.”

The Guardian: “…the film keeps changing costumes, covering its tracks. It’s nodding freely to everything from ‘Fatal Attraction,’ to Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘Suspicion,’ to ‘The War of the Roses‘; all but tripping over itself in its rush to the climax. Thank heavens for Fincher, who keeps the tale so coiled and intense that we are prepared to stick with it, even as it pitches towards outright hysteria. He whips up a bracing, scalding sketch of a marriage in meltdown; a banner-headline study of the domestic hell that we make for each other. Poor Amy and Nick turn out to be their own worst enemies. Their petty sniping and grievances have run clean out of control. ‘Gone Girl,’ finally, may be no more than a storm in a teacup. But what an elegant, bone-china teacup this is. And what a force-10 gale we have brewing inside.”

The Telegraph: “…for all its simmering malice and buried secrets, it’s worth remembering that this is David Fincher in fun mode: unnerving, shocking and provoking for better and for worse, in sickness and in health, but mostly sickness.”

Vulture: “The movie is phenomenally gripping—although it does leave you queasy, uncertain what to take away on the subject of men, women, marriage, and the possibility of intimacy from the example of such prodigiously messed-up people….it’s preferable to view ‘Gone Girl’ as a profoundly cynical portrait of all sides of all relationships: First you’re blind to the truth of other people, then you see and wish you could go back to being blind. See it with your sweetie!” 

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