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Friday, 31 August 2012

Gone: a brief comment

Gone, a recent thriller, was a box office flop, and a critical car crash.  This is a pity.  I feel it was entirely misread as a film.  Instead of seeing it as a generic serial killer / girl in peril movie, consider the subtext as the text.  And the subtext is complex and refreshing and disturbing - for the heroes of the film are not the bumbling and patronising male cops, boyfriends, or even killer, or false (female) therapist or co-worker - but two sisters - one a recovering alcoholic, the other a former mental patient.  Because of their love, and intelligence, they manage to survive one day's ordeal, and dispatch the evil that threatens them.  The screenplay is both mythic and rather glumly local (in a Joycean way) - for Portland is a small place, and even the car chases are low-key.

Girl, Completed

The best part of the film is how Amanda Seyfried's feisty, haunted (and yes, sexy) heroine lies to everyone she meets, as she does her best Nancy Drew, "five-foot-four, blonde, blue eyes, armed and dangerous" to outwit the yokels and disbelieving adult world beyond her night terrors.  Her hiding out in plain sight with some teen girls is hilarious and sweet.  There is no twist in the movie - mad love prevails (she throws away her pills and any rational limits) over law and disorder - but a great sense of catharsis.  I have never seen such a positive depiction of a young mentally ill woman - this is like Girl, Interrupted, without the interruption.  It is Girl, Completed.  In time, I believe this will come to be seen as a classic of its genre.
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