Book to Movie: Gone Girl

When Gone Girl started hitting the tops of book charts everywhere, I still didn't read it. It wasn't until I saw that the movie was releasing that I realized I needed to read the book before I had it spoiled for me (I prefer to read books first, if possible). I've now met quite a few people who have read the book and seen the movie, who think that you should choose just one, because the experience is entirely different. For me, I think they both have their worth!. Fincher’s film is an abstract, intellectual, postmodern glory: it reminds us of the disenchanted bros in Fight Club, but also stands on it's own, telling stories we have heard 100 times before in new ways. The original novel is a crime novel: totally absorbing and ingenious: though the book isn't exactly plausible, it's got enough detail in both a forensic and psychological light that we can make sense of it as truth. The events in the book make sense; the voices, thoughts, and actions of Nick and Amy seem like they could belong to real people. David Fincher's film version of Gillian Flynn's book could not be a further movement form that proof. While the screenplay was written by Flynn, the film isn't trying to convince you that it is true, or plausible. The movie crosses the thin line that divides genre fiction from postmodern fiction; it is decisively unreal. Compared to Fight Club, in Gone Girl, the myths of coupledom (rather than masculinity) are being challenged. “We’re so cute I want to punch us in the face,” Amy says. To be in a couple, in short, is to be in a power relationship. And in power relationships, there are always winners and losers. Still, the book is also worth reading (if you don't think the movie is worth viewing after that description, I don't know who you are). The book itself crosses lines that other authors have been afraid to cross: the plot twist is not what we want, and the winner doesn't win. As far as the ending, this is what Flynn has to say: "First of all, I didn’t write it as an open ending to set up a sequel at all. It was the only thing that made sense to me, that made sense to what was true to the book and true to the characters. Amy’s not going to end up in jail. She’s Amazing Amy! You’re never going to find the “aha!” clue because she thinks she’s already thought of everything and that’s who she is. People think they would find that satisfying, if she were caught and punished. You know, when I’m at a reading or something, people will come up to me and are very honest about saying, “I hated the ending!” I always say, “Well, what did you want to have happen?” And it’s like, “I wanted justice!” I promise you, I just don’t think you’d find it satisfying for Amy to end up in a prison cell just sitting in a little box." Which version you enjoy is up to you!

Three turns should do it! -Hermione
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