Gone Girl Summary(spoilers!)
by Jess Kay
Gone Girl. I still have not determined if ‘Gone’ is meant to refer to her physical state of being, or her mental state of being. Let’s start at the beginning. The tale follows Nick Dunne as he navigates the landscape of reporting his wife, Amy Elliott Dunne, as missing on the day of their 5th anniversary. As we flash back and forth from present time and points throughout Nick and Amy’s relationship, we see that their relationship started like any other fairytale as the two get lost in the other, building over time as Amy boasts about how easy marriage is for them. But when they move from New York City to Missouri to aid Nick’s ailing mother, their relationship begins to wane and pressure begins to build as Nick falls to infidelity and starts dating one of his community college students, and then lashes out at Amy, throwing her to the ground before restraining himself from beating her further, leading her to fear for her life. The evidence begins to turn on Nick and the press begins to implicate him in Amy’s disappearance and possible murder.
And then the bombshell. Cut to present day Amy, alive and well, happily gloating about how brilliantly and meticulously she has set Nick up to frame him for her murder as she escapes to a life of gluttony while watching Nick being eaten alive. From here, we learn that this is not Amy’s first foray into fraud: before meeting Nick, she worked meticulously to frame her previous lover for rape, causing him to plead down to sexual assault and register as a sex offender, ultimately ruining his life. Her psychopathy builds as she comes to stay with her stalker high school boyfriend in the present time and frames him for kidnapping her and holding her hostage and repeatedly raping her. She then kills him and returns home to Nick, using the kidnapping story to explain her disappearance.
Meanwhile, Nick has uncovered her plot to frame him and is working to expose her. When he learns that he does not have the evidence to have her arrested and charged, he is left living under the same roof with a terrifying woman that he fears could kill him at any moment. He expresses his desire to leave, so she essentially steals his sperm and becomes pregnant, trapping him for the next 18 years in her deranged and murderous claws.
Gone Girl Review
by Anna Cherry
Fantastically woven thriller of one person’s melodramatic tale of their life, told for an audience of one. A grand character in the movie of their life, no ideal is sacred and no human connection is left unperverted.
THIS MOVIE MAY CHANGE THE WAY YOU LOOK AT LIFE FOREVER!
The title says it all. The girl is gone. Emotionally and perhaps mentally. This girl has obvious sociopathy and a steady flirtation with full-blown psychosis. Think of all the worst mashups of Blank Space and all of those, suddenly ubiquitous, Lady-Pink-Perry manslaughter videos ..but conversely and surprisingly set to a progressive beat of considering its male victims as human beings reacting to abuse rather than background objects. The movie takes you on a twisted canyon ride through the social landscape – masterfully acted by everyone involved might I add – and truly takes its time setting up a scene where the average conditioned viewer can finally step back from oft repeated “listen and believe” pop cultural ideology and for the first time begin to truly appreciate everything that encompasses all the possibilities and hidden abilities of a human woman.
Frequently, humans go unstable and commit horrendous acts of physical or emotional abuse and yet we have somehow convinced ourselves as a society that women are exempt from this fact of human nature. It’s like trying to take 50% of the credit and power without taking 50% of the blame as well. Whenever we finally admit that a woman has done something that isn’t “sugar and spice and everything nice” then it is always somehow also the case that women are powerless victims of circumstance (or men) and utterly without blame. We too often blame parents for what their children do because we know they were helpless and under someone’s direct control. But when these children become adults, they must bear the responsibility for blame as well as the freedom of equality. Some children refuse to take such responsibility for their actions yet still claim the equality of adulthood, and now feminism is doing the same.
The Gone Girl finale poignantly shows how a person can be trapped through group dynamics and be filled with a rage against the invisible bars. The collective blind eye of our society that’s been turned toward female power has also been closed to the injustice done to men and it has started to become an infected wound of resentment and, yes, violent impulses which are only a natural reaction of a maximally stressed psyche. But hey, news flash: Women lie too. But guess what, we are better than men at it. Everyone in pop media is OK with coyly admitting that women are “smarter” but somehow not when it comes to conniving manipulation? Why do we deny with all our collective social might that women can’t be the monster in the relationship? Why is it so difficult for us to see that we routinely vilify any arbitrary member of an entire gender on the mere word of a woman?
In the specific mental contest that is the social and mental battlefield, women are the superiors even though men usually are victorious in direct physical battlefield. It’s one of the many balancing factors in nature. There is a give and take and each of us has our own strengths and weaknesses as both groups and individuals. There are trade-offs that make us both independently valuable and reliant upon our community.
There’s a reason why you might win a game of chess by trapping the king but the most powerful piece on the board is certainly the queen.