Movie #46: Gone Baby Gone

I had never even heard of Gone Baby Gone until my brother recommended it to me. He knows that I like movies full of plot twists, but unfortunately this was still not my kind of movie. This tale of a child abducted from her trashy drug-addict mother and the messiest set of circumstances surrounding the incident (including police corruption and murder) is one of those “bruised and battered” movies where every character is deeply-flawed, and even when things turn out in the end, the emotional costs are so great that everyone’s life is ruined. I am not one who needs a neat, Hollywood ending, but I’m also not crazy about bleakness either. Adding to the depressing tone were the many New England accents which made the dialogue (which was already rather muffled/mumbled) difficult to understand. One character would whisper something about another character and I wouldn’t understand who they were talking about or why what they were saying was significant, shocking, or whatever. Casey Affleck, however, is surprisingly good in the lead role as the private eye hired to help the police investigate the little girl’s disappearance. It’s too bad he doesn’t have more of a career. He’s got the baby-face charm going for him, similar to Shia LeBoeuf, but with much more dramatic intensity and presence (maybe because he’s older). Anyway, the other actor whose performance was unexpected was Amy Ryan as the mother, Helene. Her character here could not be more opposite to the only role I knew her from — silly-and-sweet Holly from The Office — but she was very convincing. Unfortunately, now I’m left with that kind of daze that comes over me after watching a heavy movie like this one. (3 out of 5)

4 more to go!


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