GONE BABY GONE |
Reviewer: JOE TAYLOR
Capt. Jack Doyle: My only child was murdered. She was twelve. Did you hear about it? What you probably didn't hear, and what I hope you never have to deal with, Miss Gennaro, is what that feels like. What I have to deal with.
Knowing that my little girl likely died crying out for me to come and save her. And I never did. My little girl died afraid and alone in a shallow ditch bank by the side of the road, not ten minutes from my house. I know what it feels like to lose a child. Now damn it, you force my hand and then you question the way I handle it.
Gone Baby Gone is one of those movies that sticks with you. Although it's a crime drama, it is so much more. For me, it does what a movie is suppose to do or it has what a movie is supposed to have:some sort of redeeming quality.
The ending was not what I would have written, but it was plausible. It's very hard to say what I mean and yet convey a sense of the movie. The basic story is the kidnapping of a little girl-her little life and history is a mother who is a dope head among many things.
The mother has stolen a drug dealer's money and the drug dealer retaliated by kidnapping the daughter. Pretty straight forward. NOT. The twists and turns keep you on the edge. What you think and what the movie portrays is not what you think at all.
I can't reveal much or I'll spoil the movie. Casey Affleck is great in an academy award winning performance, whatever that is. He reminds very much of William Hurt in how he underplays his role; he is very effective. He is gentle but tough. I saw him in the Jesse James movie and wrote the movie off as too ethereal; when, in fact, it was more his acting method.
Ed Harris and Morgan Freeman are outstanding as is everyone in this movie. No weak role. What fascinates me always about Morgan Freeman is that you can see him in any role and he makes you think the one he's playing is just who he is.
Ben Affleck's directoral debut is very impressive. His ending, given the situation and the decisions made, was very, very intuitive (imaginative).
This movie is really also about ethics and ethical decision-making (deciding what is right and wrong). We come to the truth and decide how best to handle the truth. Many of us in various ways come to those situations on occasion, maybe not in the same dramatic way as in the movie, but generally in living life.
Another thing that I liked about this movie was it educated us, which I think movies can do while entertaining. Most of us middle or upper middle class types are never exposed to the underbelly of life like it was represented in this movie-big cities where drugs are so pervasive, kids living in squalor, with not much of a chance in life and perverts ready to take advantage-a way of life that is far removed from us. See this movie, worth your time. Sad, dramatic, thought provoking.