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Thoughts on "Gone Baby Gone" . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Worth A Matinee or Full-Price Ticket: Matinee. This is an excellent movie, so it might be worth a full-price admission. That being said, it is a dark film, and sometimes those are best seen in the light of day for a matinee.

Will I Own It On DVD: Unlikely. I really enjoyed "Mystic River," but haven't purchased it because it's semi-depressing. "Gone Baby Gone" fits that mode as one $3.25 rental (I would like to see it one more time) is far cheaper than buying it for $20.

1) 1) "Gone Baby Gone" is a surprisingly assured first feature film from Ben Affleck. He was smart to pick excellent source material (author of "Mystic River") and this story is similarly dark and complex with lots of characters facing hard decisions after a 4-year-old girl goes missing.

2) I enjoy movies which feature a very specific geographical location, a locale which actively plays into the story and gives you a sense of place. This movie definitely showcases the Boston neighborhood area, and Affleck cast some non-actor locals to give it an authentic flavor which helps the movie immensly.

3) Casey Affleck, who I find hard to watch in leading roles (see 'Jesse James' review), works out in this project with better results than I expected. To the screenwriter's credit, they mention early in the film about Affleck's young-ish looks and small frame, but once that is noted, Affleck steps up with a very solid performance that does hold the movie together. It's only near the end when he's paired against Morgan Freeman that his shortcomings bubble up a bit, however, acting opposite Freeman is tough for anybody.

4) If I was casting, I would place Ed Harris and Morgan Freeman in supporting roles in every movie I could find. They are both always interesting to watch, and the pair provide excellent support as police officers investigating the case.

5) Ben Affleck deserves credit for this film, a project which he co-wrote the script and directed a fine first movie. His own acting choices have been spotty to say the least, but "Gone Baby Gone" showcases his potential as a director. This movie builds tension throughout, and ultimately concludes with a complex and satisfying ending which is sure to inspire conversation about the tough choices these characters make.



  1. nobich Says:
  2. Oh Ed Harris! I went out with someone who was the spitting image of him in that Apollo movie- sigh
    now I'll be smiling all afternoon.

  3. Linda Says:
  4. I read an interview where Afflek said they would go into the local bars for the bar scenes, buy the regulars drinks, and shoot with them there. Voila, instant extras! Brilliant!

  5. vivavavoom Says:
  6. good to know. heard it has gotten good reviews. mystic river was an amazing movie...stayed with me long after I saw it. I need a comedy, but good to know a worthwhile drama is out there. seems to be a lot of nuthin playing now.

    ed harris is amazing in everything. and very sexy imho.

  7. I have never seen the movie. Thanx to your rave review I will check it out.

  8. Nobich - You're welcome then. Ha. I always like Harris in nearly every movie he's been in & he was excellent in "Apollo 13."

    Linda - That's interesting as I knew he used locals, but didn't know the drinks story. Very smart indeed and a cheap way to get extras. Ha.

    Vivavavoom - Harris is always good in his roles, and a comedy would be nice, however, I can't think of one coming down the pike. I'll let you know if I find one of interest because I'll go see it for sure. And you're right about "Mystic River."

    TrinabeingTrina - It is a good movie, but I think you have to be in a good frame of mind to enjoy it as it's not a fun movie (if that makes any sense).

  9. Carmel Says:
  10. I really want to see Mystic River, I have been saying that for ages, hopefully I will get around to watching it soon.

  11. Heff Says:
  12. Damn. Here I was expecting a "Bathing With The Drunken Viking" post.

  13. Carmel - You should definitely go rent "Mystic River" - it's worth it.

    Heff - Ha. With any luck (and a few pitchers), there should be one next week as the weather is perfect in Austin & I'm meeting my brother after work to drink outside at a local pub.

  14. Carmel - You should definitely go rent "Mystic River" - it's worth it.

    Heff - Ha. With any luck (and a few pitchers), there should be one next week as the weather is perfect in Austin & I'm meeting my brother after work to drink outside at a local pub.

  15. Yay! I wanted this movie to be good and your review has just now moved it to the top of my movie list.

    *sigh* Ed Harris. I'm smiling with nobich.

  16. Stephanie Says:
  17. I keep getting invited to it but I can't go. It's set in Boston and my ex-boyfriend is Boston... Maybe I'll wait 'til my heart heals a little and rent it on DVD?

  18. Anonymous Boxer - Another Harris fan, eh? Well, it's hard to argue with that, and I was pleasantly surprised as this is a good, gritty film.

    Stephanie - Yeah, you can certainly wait to rent it on DVD as it won't lose much in the translation from big to small screen. Stay out of Boston in the interim.


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