Book to Movie Review–Gone Girl

Gone Girl
Movie Summary (from IMDb): With his wife's disappearance having become the focus of an intense media circus, a man sees the spotlight turned on him when it's suspected that he may not be innocent.

Book Review:

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Book to Movie Thoughts:

I went to the theater on opening night. I wanted to sit in a theater with people who had no idea what was going to happen next. I was afraid over time the plot would be spoiled and everyone would know the plot within a few weeks. Having watched the reactions of people reading the book, I expected the same sorts of shock and disbelief in the theater.

The movie was pretty good. The casting of Nick was perfect, as Ben Affleck played the likeable husband that you also can’t stand because he’s such a schmuck. I think every character was casted perfectly except for Amy. And she was only half bad because she played the other half of her role perfectly. I knew it would be hard to be satisfied with the chosen actress because her character was so complex. I thought the movie turned her into a colder, bitchier version of herself in her diary and it made the rest of her personality easy to predict. The book was so much better in this regard.
The movie captured so much of the twisted plot and characters of the book. In almost every way, it was well done. Only minor changes were made, mostly to the details of certain events, but the overall event was still much the same.

I only have two complaints. One, the biggest twist and most major moment was so predictable in the movie. Maybe I just knew it was coming. Maybe Amy’s diary had more of an impact on me in the book. But even the people I was with guessed the next part and that was such a disappointment. The twist in the book floored me absolutely and I wanted the movie to do the same. The movie did a better job in forming the final moments of Nick and Amy, but missed the mark with the beginning of the lives and the impression they gave to one another and to the audience.

My other complaint involves another aspect of the book that the movie didn’t quite hit. The writing was incredible. Nick hit the nail on the head with so many of his reflections on life, marriage, and today’s world. Amy’s cool girl passage was so spot on. And the movie tried to hit those moments in the narration, but I think it was hard to do it as well as the book. For that reason, I think skipping the book in favor of the movie would be a huge mistake. You just don’t get Nick or Amy without the book.

As I suspected, the internet is filled with Gone Girl spoilers and disgruntled people who were mad enough about the ending to spoil it for everyone else. I’m glad I saw it before any of that happened. I don’t understand what it is about twists that gets everyone so mad, but those same people complain about predictability. The movie audience is a lot harder to please sometimes than readers, but both seem to prefer endings and stories that follow a pattern instead of breaking the mold and that’s a shame. Gone Girl was awesome!


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