Gone Girl

Gillian Flynn’s twist-laden mystery novel gets a somber, respectful screen treatment from David Fincher (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Social Network), which has the unfortunate effect of diminishing the book’s diabolical fun and heightening its dull misanthropy. In small-town Missouri, a local man (Ben Affleck) becomes a murder suspect after his cool-blond New Yorker wife (Rosamund Pike) goes missing; the usual media circus follows, but appearances are deceiving. Even at two and a half hours the movie is terminally overplotted, and the two leads both sink under the weight of their selfish, spiteful characters. But there are strong supporting performances from Carrie Coon as the husband’s loyal sister and Kim Dickens as the shrewd police detective investigating the case. Flynn wrote the script; with Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry, and Patrick Fugit.