Gone Baby Gone

I wasn’t going to write any reviews of films I saw on TV coz it seemed a little pointless (and coz I watch a LOT of films on TV), but then I watched Gone Baby Gone the other day and just thought, WOW.

If you’ve read the rest of my blog then you’ll know that I’ve already reviewed Ben Affleck’s second film, The Town, which I absolutely loved. And I loved Gone Baby Gone just as much…possibly even more.

The film is about a little girl in Boston who inexplicably goes missing and two detectives who are hired to broaden the investigation by using the connections they have on the streets. It’s this brilliantly paced and tightly scripted story that keeps you watching throughout (partly due to Dennis Lehane’s excellent source book and partly due to Affleck’s and Aaron Stockard’s screenplay) and the mystery aspect makes it even more absorbing, keeping you watching to the very end.

One of the reasons it works so well though is Casey Affleck who is brill as Patrick Kenzie who is one of the missing person’s detectives hired by the lost girl’s family to broaden the investigation – and Ben Affleck did the right thing by not stepping up to main actor duties (I don’t think people had yet forgiven him for the whole Benifer thing and various crap he’d shown up in – in fact he didn’t even want his name on this as the director, he was that worried that people would hate it just coz of his involvement). His brother looks maybe a little too young to be a missing person’s detective, but it doesn’t matter coz he’s still amazing  (although it’s kinda explained away when one of the characters points this out themselves and they’re told he just looks young. And it may also be to do with the fact that he’s the young guy in touch with the people on the street, but I digress…).

Another standout is Amy Ryan as the missing girl’s mother who makes you feel the right mix of pathos towards her situation and utter hatred for certain aspects of her and her life. Also Michelle Monaghan as the other missing person’s detective is great if a little underused and Ed Harris is great as the gruff old school detective in charge of the case.

So, an incredibly depressing story – but it’s so well-written and so well-directed by Affleck (and his direction again makes for some excellent thriller/action scenes). And the mystery of the missing girl keeps you completely gripped as more and more dirt gets unearthed in yet another town full of conflict and lies. Amazing.

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~ by square-eyed-geek on July 7, 2011.

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