Gone: An ‘Is She Crazy, Is She Sane’ Psychological Thriller
- Amanda SeyfriedJennifer Carpenter...
- Heitor Dhalia
- In 1 Cinema
Jill (Seyfried) doesn’t have the best relationship with the police.
After being kidnapped and thrown into a hole in the middle of the forest, which
she luckily managed to escape from, the police refused to believe a word she
said and stuck her in a mental institution. Fast forward a bit and she’s out of
the loony bin, dealing with anxiety problems, carrying a gun and taking
kickboxing lessons. She comes home one day from her waitressing job to find her
sister gone. Convinced that the kidnapper came back for her and took Molly
(Wickersham) instead, she tries to get the police to take her claims seriously,
but to no avail. Left with no other
choice, she takes to the streets piecing together the clues to find Molly and
her kidnapper, before time runs out.
This thriller requires you to suspend your powers of logic for a while.
While for the most part it tries to be more of a psychological thriller, the
moments which require Jill to do some actual sleuthing are a long shot – to put
it mildly. The clues she finds as to the kidnapper’s whereabouts are either
absurdly simple or completely farfetched. The latter in particular are a real
crime since the kidnapper keeps asserting that he kidnapped Molly to lure Jill.
If his aim was truly to lure Jill, the clues he left her wouldn’t have been so
discreet, random and easily overlooked.
Also, the characters are pretty shallow. The police officers are
uniformly incompetent or lazy or a mixture of both. They stand around looking
annoyed for the whole film. As for Jill, she’s rather strange. She fluctuates
between two states: one in which she’s single-mindedly obsessed with saving her
sister and the other in which she compulsively lies to everyone she meets. The
first is logical and, based on her own history with the kidnapper and her
relationship with Molly, highly understandable. The latter however is just
plain odd. We’re never given a motive or reason for why she’s such a
pathological liar and it seems rather out of character. Would somebody in her nerve-wracking
situation have it in them to lie so well, or keep their numerous stories
straight for that matter? We’re told that Jill stuck to her story for the
entire time that she was locked up in hospital. Would somebody who wouldn’t
tell a fib to get out of a mental hospital become a chronic liar?
In addition to being a liar, the film also keeps trying to push the
possibility that Jill isn’t really all there in the head, though seeing as it’s
Jill’s word against that of the useless police force, the idea never really
registers the way it should in order to give the film a decent psychological
bend and keep the viewers guessing.
Despite its inconsistencies, Gone
manages to be a decent, light thriller until the ending which derails the film
completely. It’s not innovative and the film is very basic despite the attempt
to give it depth. However, it’s rather fast paced and Seyfried makes for a very
watchable heroine, even if her character makes little sense and is unworthy of