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‘Gone Girl’ a must-see for thriller, mystery fans

Date: 10/10/2014

In this week’s movie review column, “Gone Girl” is both a character study and mystery that is well worth watching and the Bing Arts Center is featuring three interesting film events.

In Theaters: Gone Girl

There are movies I don’t mind knowing a fair amount about before going into them and there are movies of which I want absolutely no knowledge. Thrillers such as “Gone Girl” fall into the second category. I didn’t know anything about it before attending a screening this weekend and I’m glad.

Director David Fincher has crafted a series of movies, including the American version of “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” “Zodiac,” “Se7en” and  “The Social Network.”

He has become known for his work in exploring the humanity in very dark places and certainly this is also the case with “Gone Girl.”

Ben Affleck is Nick Dunne, a onetime writer living in New York City who has met the woman of his dreams, Amy, played by Rosamund Pike. At first life is pretty perfect but events take over that cause the couple to move back to Nick’s native Missouri.

The film opens with Nick, who is returning to their home after thinking about their marriage. He must talk to Amy, but she is gone. In the short time he has been away, there has obviously been a struggle at the house and Amy is not longer to be seen. He calls the cops almost immediately, who start an investigation that quickly implies Nick.

Fincher has been very clever in his casting as Affleck walks a fascinating line with his portrayal of Nick. Nick is an unhappy husband, but is he a murderer? Why does he seem so clueless, so disengaged? Why does he flash an inappropriate smile all too often? 

Amy’s side of the story is represented in flashback as entries in her journal that detail the plunge the marriage has taken.

It’s tough to give the film the praise it deserves without a copious amount of spoilers. I’ll resist the temptation. I will say it has several twists and turns that will absolutely keep you riveted to the story.

Both Affleck and Pike deserve huge praise for their performances, but they are supported by a great cast including Carrie Cook as Nick’s loyal twin sister and Kim Dickens as the unrelenting detective in charge of the case.

Go see it.

At the Bing Arts Center

My friend Brian Hale is presenting three film events this month at the Bing Arts Center that are worth your attention.

On Oct. 11 at 8 p.m. the Bing’s Independent Filmmakers Series will continue with producer and Director Robert Stock’s short “Red Right Wrong.” Stock shot the thriller locally and it stars AJ Pero (from Twisted Sister), Malachy Murray, Kenny Daneyko (New Jersey Devils), Antonio Saillant, Warren Amerman and Raw Leiba.

Stock and filmmaker and American International College film professor Marty Langford will be available for questions after the show. The film is unrated. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Refreshments available. Admission is $5 at the door.

The Bing will host Erynn Rocabich’s Second Annual?Cult Classic Film Night presents? “Little Shop of Horrors” ?on Oct 18 at 8 p.m.? The film will be accompanied by a drag ensemble. Admission is $10 at the door.

On Oct. 30, Not So Silent Cinema presents? ”The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari” ?at 8 p.m.? The classic 1919 German silent expressionist horror film will be accompanied live by composer Brendan Cooney with his Not So Silent Cinema ensemble.

The film is considered to be one of the best examples of the German expressionist movement in film and stars the great German actor Conrad Veidt in one of his early film roles. Seeing it should be on the list for anyone serious about movies.

This performance notes the release of Bing Art Center Production’s first project, the DVD of “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari” with Not So Silent Cinema’s score recorded by Warren Amerman at his Rotary Records studio in West Springfield.

DVDs are regularly $15, but only $10 for attendees at this screening. This special event is made possible in part by the Springfield Cultural Council. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Refreshments available. Tickets are $20 and $10 for students, available in advance at or by calling 731-9730.