DATELINE: Fincher Does Vertigo
The Master of Suspense would have approved. Yes, Gone Girl is a takeoff on Vertigo.
As T.S. Elliot said in his Prufrock poem, “Do I dare to eat a peach?” And as we say in our blog, “Do we dare to put David Fincher in the same category as Alfred Hitchcock?”
We hear the mermaids singing for sure, each to each. And this film is creepier than the Overlook Hotel.
Gone Girl is another in a series of David Fincher movies that holds you in a vise grip. He has put his finger on the pulse of media savvy entertainment and has combined it with the ruthless media of the entertainment world. You can’t tell them apart in this doozy of a thriller.
A man with a famous wife who goes missing finds himself under suspicion and under media condemnation. You can’t win if the fake news networks don’t like you. In fact, if you haven’t confessed to what they believe, you may as well jump off the first bridge your chickens cross before counting their clues.
Making dubious decisions and finding critics at every turn quickly makes Nick Dunne (Affleck) look guiltier than the wrong man in every Hitch movie. His cool blonde wife is more mysterious than Kim Novak and Grace Kelly doing a Tippi Hedren imitation.
Hitchcock loved to use red herrings in the clothes of Bob Cummings or Richard Todd. In this film Fincher has found his empty suit in the person of Neil Patrick Harris.
The only piece missing from this Hitchcock homage is a Bernard Herrmann score that lingers in the memory.
What an intriguing movie nevertheless.