What Have We Done to Each Other?: Gone Girl (2014)

2014 Gone Girl

What are you thinking? What are you feeling? What have we done to each other? What will we do?

So I am just stating here and now that I will not reveal the end of this movie. It is a great piece of work, with an amazing twist that you must see or read (the book) for yourself. Since it is still out in theaters I do not want to ruin anything for the potential viewer. That being said:

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So the book this film is based on came out in 2012 and I was really intrigued by it. I added it to my to-read list and planned on getting around to it. But you readers know how that is.

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So yeah, I hadn’t gotten around to it. However, that all changed this summer. I told you in a previous post that I journeyed out to Wyoming for an internship. There wasn’t a lot to do in the town, and the other interns and I mostly hung out on the weekends. We talked about what there was to do, which was mostly reading or netflixing. (I don’t have netflix so I Amazon Instant Watch or putlocker things). Anyways, one of the interns, Gwen, hadn’t brought anything with her and was asking about where to purchase books. I had brought my kindle and was fine (until it broke). I told her the library was out as I had found out to get a card I would have to pay $20.

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Then I remembered! There was a bookstore in town called “The Newstand“. But shortly after we arrived it went out of business.

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Yep. I think the only place left in town you could to get books were the Walgreens or the Walmart. They had two thrift stores in town, one was only clothes, the other furniture. It was very different from anyplace I’d lived before.

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Anyways, so one week Gwen starts talking about this book she just bought (I don’t know where. Now that I think about it, I’m not sure I ever asked her.) She told us it was Gone Girl. Immediately I was intrigued as I had really wanted to borrow it. I asked for the book and finished it in one day. It was that good.

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The book is a mystery/suspense/horror. The way it is told is really interesting as it goes back and forth between the present and the past. In the present Nick Dunne’s is trying to figure out and cope with his wife Amy’s disappearance. The past is revealed to us through Amy’s journal, as she details the everything prior to her disappearance. It was an interesting book as it has the same unsettling qualities as Catcher in the Rye or Alias Grace. In Catcher in the Rye, the main character, Holden Caulfield, admits to the reader that he is a liar, leaving one unsure of what in the book is real, and what is a child’s fantasy. Margaret Atwood, author of Alias Grace, does a similar thing in her novel. There are no quotations marks put around the dialogue, leaving the reader very uncertain as to what was said and what was only in the character’s minds. Just like Holden,  Grace Marks leaves us wondering if she is really telling the truth?

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Gone Girl isn’t exactly written that way, but it does have some similarities. With Nick, he is described as being somewhat of an a***hole (his word not mine) and having a face that makes himself always look as if he is lying. He is too good looking and charming that you don’t want to trust him (the characters joke that his chin causes you to not trust him.) As you read his accounts you start wondering if there is more than he is telling the reader. You feel as if he is hiding something from you, even though it is told in first person. It makes you wonder what is he hiding? What are his secrets?

Suspense have to know

And then you have Amy. Everything we hear is from what she wrote in a journal. But is it the truth? After all a journal is where you release your emotions. Sometimes you exaggerate or write things down that you would never do, just because it helps destress you. As I mentioned before it is a release. Besides that you don’t write everything down in a journal. After all, that is a lot of work. Most of the time you write down the things that made you upset or happy; never giving the whole picture but a moment. Just a moment. It’s selective in memory. So that begs the question: how much of it can we take as fact? How much is fiction?

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So one day I was at the movie theater watching Expendables III. The film finished and I contemplated sneaking in to see another film, but unfortunately the theater I was at was very small (four screens) and the ticket seller and I had had an actual conversation, so he would remember me. Along with that, my “California-ness” showed very strongly as everyone told that I looked very “different” from Wyoming girls.

Yeah I don't understand it either

Yeah I don’t understand it either

So instead I called a cab for a ride home and waited around until it came. As I was waiting, I started watching the screen that showed trailers for upcoming films. I saw one for The Equalizer, but it didn’t really strike me as a “must-see”. After that the trailer for Gone Girl came up.

OMG

I didn’t even know that they were turning the book into a film!!! Fantastic!!! Then I saw the cast list. As you know from an earlier post, I love Ben Affleck. I knew he would be a perfect Nick. Rosamund Pike was great as Jane in Pride and Prejudice (2005) and I was interested to see how she would do this role. I thought Neil Patrick Harris was a great choice as Amy’s ex, as everything I have ever seen him in he has conquered. The only thing I was unsure about was Tyler Perry. But to be honest, any time I see him not playing Madea, it’s a little strange. Anyways, I became excited for the film and couldn’t wait to see it.

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And as I mentioned before it was pretty incredible.

Take note Hollywood

Take note Hollywood

What was great about the film was that they followed the book pretty consistently. There are a few changes, but not enough to make you want to string up the director by his thumbs. On a whole the changes didn’t really hurt the film at all. I thought it was amazing how they handled the flashbacks, narrations, and journal entries. I would definitely read the book along with the movie as it has more detail and little things that can’t transfer over to film. I do give one warning though. If you want to be surprised DO NOT READ THE BOOK. The book has this amazing twist, about halfway through, and a killer end. It was a great shock when you read it, but not so much the second time encountering it on the screen. I mean you already know it, so while the rest of the audience is oohing and ahhing over it, you’re just chilling there thinking, knew it.

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So if you truly, truly want to be surprised. I would wait to read the book until after seeing the film.

So I’m just going to do a partial review, as I really, really don’t want to spoil too much for anybody.

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Nick Dunne

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It is the day of the Dunne’s five-year anniversary. And Nick is not very happy.

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You see life hasn’t been a bed of roses for the Dunnes. Nick is from a little town; North Carthage, Missouri. He went to college and moved to New York, and began writing for a magazine. He met Amy at a party and the two later married…but bliss did not last long. He lost his job due to downsizing as the economy tanked. His father is crazy and in a home where he constantly escapes from. And his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Immediately, hearing the news of his mother, he and Amy move back to his hometown much to her displeasure.

Now the relationship was already strained, but after moving to Missouri it becomes much worse. Amy is a New Yorker born and bred and doesn’t do well with places that are not New York.

That particular morning, Nick heads over to the bar that he bought with his twin sister Margot, and the two contemplate what would be a good anniversary present. 5 years is wood, “and there’s nothing good from that.” When Nick heads home, he receives the biggest shock of his life.

What!

His house is a mess and his wife is missing.

OMG

He can’t find her and doesn’t know where she might be. He calls the police and later, her parents. They team up and begin commercials, signs, news reports, trying to find Amy. Ben Affleck did an amazing job at this role.

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But some people don’t think that he’s quite so innocent. Some suspect he might have killed her. Things become espechially sticky when they discover the broken in area was staged, and a lot of blood was spilled and then cleaned up afterwards. Did he have something to do with his wife’s disappearance? Did he kill her? Is he innocent? If he is innocent, than what happened to her? Where can she be?

Suspense have to know

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Amy Dunne

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We are first introduced to Amy through her journal. Amy is the daughter of authors. Her parents wrote the best-selling series called Amazing Amy. Their main character is perfect and excels at every hobby. Especially things that Amy has failed at. Amy resents the books, but they have made her famous and a major spot in the limelight.

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Amy is beautiful, charming, witty, etc. The “perfect” woman.

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She writes personality quizzes for magazines for a living. I know some of you out there might think that’s a bit strange, but let’s face it…she has a major trust fund. She meets Nick at a “writer” party one night, and after that the two are hooked. They get married and have a few great years, but things start going downhill once Nick loses his job. He becomes someone that she doesn’t know.

Carnival of Souls Don;y know real

She hates Missouri. Nick thrives, but it makes her feel like she is choking. Then things in the marriage start to get even worse…Or does it? Is Nick really as cruel as Amy paints him? Or are the writings in the journal just the exaggerations of an unhappy, displaced person?

What!

Did Amy leave by her own choice? Or was she taken by force? But most importantly, where is Amy?

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The supporting characters are just as great as Affleck and Pike. Carrie Coon is perfect as Margot as she is really able to capture twin sister needling brother, and being supremely protective of him. Kim Dickens is an amazing Detective Rhonda Boney, the homicide officer assigned to the case. She seems all midwestern, laid-back, easygoing, charm; but she has a real brain in her head and is highly observant. Neil Patrick Harris steals scenes, as he plays Desi Collings, Amy’s ex and possible kidnapper. And then we have Tyler Perry, rounding out the cast as Tanner Bolt. I never would have picked him for the part as he is radically different, but he does a great job as being one of those shark lawyers after the big-name cases.

dean whinchester shrug smile oh well

And is has an awesome twist that I will not reveal as you all should definitely watch/read for yourself.

Where is Amy? What Happened to Her? Visit Your Local Theater to Find Out.

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To start Horrorfest III from the beginning, go to Even a Man Pure of Heart

For the previous post, go to There’s Nothing Out There. Nothing in the Mist

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For more on Ben Affleck, go to What is This Thing?

For more on films based on books, go to You’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat

For more twist endings, go to Don’t F*** With the Original

For more book-filled posts, go to I Was Here For A Moment. And Then I Was Gone

For more of my favorite quotes, go to Part X: The Movie List That Would Not Die

The End: Goodbye Michael, Goodbye

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All things must come to an end. And as stated before, my relationship with Michael has ended and with that any more posts about him. It’s time to fully move on. We had the Verne Saga, the Michael Drama, and now its time to move onto something completely new.

It’s hard to fully move on as I was counting down the days until I would see him again and couldn’t wait until I was home and could spend time with him. I was totally the guy in If It Means A Lot to Youor All My Lovin“. There are some days when I do great, and others when all I can think of is what could have been, what I could be doing with him. Some days I feel very much like Shawn Spencer in the Psych episode “Right Turn or Left For Dead“.

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The hardest thing is not knowing exactly what happened that made him change his feelings for me. I keep contrasting the old Michael; (the Michael that played the piano for me, would text me cute things, the one that had to see me so much that he skyped me on his vacation, who spent all his evenings and some days with me, was waiting for the right moment to kiss me, who was excited to take me out on a “real” date, the guy who I had trouble getting him to stop talking to me on the phone); to the Michael that started ignoring me, and was so emotionally detached and standoffish. I just don’t know what happened.

Endings

I mean I was terrified to try a long-distance relationship as I thought it wouldn’t work out, but he was so secure and sure, he made me believe it and I don’t know what made him change his mind.

I went and returned some of his stuff and asked him what happened, but he wouldn’t answer me until I harshly pressed him. He told me that 1) I wasn’t the person he wanted to marry. This really threw me as matrimony was the furthest thing from my mind. I mean we had only  been dating 5 months of which only 2 did we interact everyday with each other (the other 3 we were apart), and I think that is waaaay  too short a time to be thinking of marriage. There was still so much we needed to learn about each other. We needed time to grow our relationship and be a couple before marriage could even be thrown on the table. I mean, how could he even know with that short of time? At the beginning of our relationship I mentioned that so many of my friends were getting married and having babies and that I was no where near ready for that anytime soon. I mean if he really wanted to get married, wouldn’t he have just have not dated me? I mean we talked about HIMYM and I told him how Ted’s constant falling in love and trying to marry girls who did not want to be married constantly annoyed me, and he agreed with me.  I know I never tried to pressure him into thinking we had to get engaged. I never even tried to pressure him into saying I love you. I never asked for a promise ring or any jewelry. I really feel that this is a copout.

He also told me that 2)”we were too different”. I don’t know why he would say that, as in the summer we “were so much alike“. I tried to press him on what was different and he couldn’t give any definite answer just kept repeating “we are too different”. I don’t understand what was so different; we both are human, grew up in church, lived in the same town, have suffered from addictions, are the youngest in our families, have similar morals, beliefs, values, and political thoughts/ideologies; loved to read similar stuff, watch the same type of movies, etc. I mean I don’t drink, but that’s not like I  judge anyone who does. I don’t have tattoos, but I never said anything about his other than when I said that the process looked extremely painful. I don’t know what he thought I wouldn’t be able to understand or empathize.

 He also said 3) he was  too aloof for me, and I demanded too much of his time. All I was asking for was 20mins a week to talk or skype, some texting, and seeing him once a month when I visited home. I don’t know where he will find any girl less dependent or consuming of one’s time. I actually don’t mind spending time by myself and doing my own thing, I missed him though and wanted to be with him. Besides when I was there this summer not only did he tell me how he hated being alone (kinda cancels out being aloof) but he spent practically every day with me, and I did not force him to do that.
I feel like the song The End” by Silverstein, “you broke my heart, you promised me the moon and stars. I fell for your dreams. I fell for your lies.”
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He told me so many things and I believed him. He talked about our future, making plans, and he didn’t come through. And the worst thing of all, he knew he wanted to break up with me, but didn’t have the courage to say anything. He lead me on. He allowed me to think nothing was wrong and let me plan spending my winter break with him. I searched for a perfect Christmas present for him, and when I texted him I had it, he already knew that he had no plans to spend Christmas with me. He knew that my Grandfather died and he said nothing. Any decent person would be there for someone who was hurting, but he just ignored me and my pain. It wasn’t immediate but for a while I just wanted to slap him or hit him. The song “Blow” by Atreyu describes how I felt about him.
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But now I’ve gotten past that. I’ve forgiven him for what he did and how he hurt me. I really cared about him, and as pathetic as it might sound to some, I genuinely hope that he finds happiness, and someone to care about him as much as I did. I actually am starting to feel bad for him, as I know that I will find someone else who will treat me how I deserve, but he will have lost out on me. He’ll never find another girlfriend who didn’t care about his past, only the present and future. One who never pressed him about things in the past he didn’t want to discuss, but waited until he wanted to share. Who didn’t care that he couldn’t take her on a “real date” as she didn’t care about money but spending time with him. Who never judged or criticized him. Who always supported and encouraged him. Who sent him care packages, even though she was the one that was “away”. He will never find someone who will listen to all his hurts and insercurties and do everything in her power to make sure that she doesn’t contribute to them, but try and help him overcome them. I mean at times I felt like telling him that I had other guys very interested in me, but I knew he had previous relationships were the girls broke his trust and I didn’t want to to that. He will never, ever, ever, find a girl who when they broke up never told him about the hurt and bitterness he caused her, but tried to encourage him all the way in the end, sharing instead all the things she loved about him. Who told him that she loved him, not as a ploy to get back together or make him feel guilty, but because she did and because she honestly wished for his happiness. What can I say, I’m one in a million and he is going to miss out on me.
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It’s funny, because when we started our relationship it reminded me of Lloyd and Diane from Say Anything. Michael was Lloyd, very adorable, easygoing, friendly, impulsive, full of life experiences, etc. And I was a much nicer version of the more structured, focused, not as socially experienced, more of a loner Diane. But somewhere along the way, I became Lloyd, and Michael Diane. Just like in the film,  something happenedc to change how Michael/Diane felt about the relationship, and instead of talking about it  they decided to break it off. Like Lloyd, I did a final move, although not nearly as epic as his boombox move. I was working on a CD to tell Michael how I felt about him as I was planning on dropping the L-Bomb on our fifth anniversary. We broke up two weeks before that, and I was going to delete the playlist, but finished and dropped it off asking him to just listen to it. He told me once that he always listens to any CD given to him twice, and I hope he listens to this one as nothing could better describe how I felt about him.
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Now not everything was bad about what happened. I’ve always been afraid of commitment and allowing someone into that space of my life and with Michael I learned how to care, trust, and let down emotional walls. And except for the last three weeks of our relationship (when he started to ignore me), Michael was a pretty great boyfriend. He really made my summer special and I am so thankful for that, as it is the best summer I’ve ever had. I also found out that I am capable of long-distance relationships, as I never thought I would be able to. But I cared about him so deeply that while the distance was long and sad at times, it was worth it. And it was nice having a very intelligent, funny, attractive, sweet guy as my boyfriend, as short as it was. Plus he introduced me to some great bands. I’ve always liked all types of music (besides rap), but most of my musical knowledge ends in 1989, and he opened me up to some great stuff. I love A Day to Remember, Silverstein, Atreyu, Chiodos, Three Days Grace, My Chemical Romance, Streetlight Manifestoand Avenged Sevenfold. I found a a7x sweater in a thrift store and almost bought it, but it was white and I always ruin my white sweaters. 😦 He had been lending me his CDs to check out the music, and I  (of course) had to return them to him. I then went to the library and put holds on everything they had from these bands.

It’s been about a month since we broke up and still hurts. This describes perfectly how I feel.

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I know I’ll find someone else and I won’t settle for anything less than a Lloyd, Mr. Tilney, or  any of the amazing men in my Romance is in the Air series (or part II). I’ll be okay. The hardest thing is that there was this guy Martin who liked me when I was dating Michael, and when I let him know I had a boyfriend he backed off. As soon as he found out Michael and I broke up, he immediately upped his game. All the attention, the flirting he’s doing, etc.; hurts. It’s not coming from who I wanted it to be from. But in time I know I will heal. It won’t be easy, but I know I’ll come through this okay.

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