19 October 2007 (USA)
Ben Affleck and Aaron Stockard based on a Dennis Lehane novel.
IMDb link and rating:
A romantically involved pair of private detectives are hired by the aunt of missing 4-year old girl. Through their search the detectives learn more about their sordid Boston neighborhood and how the decisions we make shape our lives.
(viewed TU 5 Aug 2008)
This film had a clever plot; it took a long while to develop, but it turned out to reveal some surprises. Also, I was pretty impressed with Casey Affleck.
It’s unfair to make the comparison, but because of my recent immersion in the mysteries of Agatha Christie - and in particular, the magnificent movies that were made starring David Suchet as Christie’s unsurpassed sleuth Hercule Poirot - I inevitably hold these as a standard for anything that develops into a mystery story. In this case, my complaint, which (I repeat) is unfair, is that the setting kept the discourse and action at a disturbingly low level. What I mean is that there were a hundred parts trash talk, crassness, and squalor for each part brainwork. I suppose this can’t be helped when you set the movie in the tough part of town.
(viewed TU 5 Aug 2008)
Despite being from the suburbs of Boston, I found that I often had a hard time understanding what the characters were saying. (I could have turned up the TV, but since the f* bomb was approximately every third word, mother-judgment prevailed.) This movie made me squirm and was often hard to watch, yet I thought it was thought-provoking and well done.
In pitting parental responsibility against drug addiction and vigilante justice, Gone Baby Gone explores the devastating effects of both on the parents and children touched by them. Oddly, this movie seemed like both an indictment of Social Services and its raison d’etre. While there were no winners, a hero does emerge only to sit quietly watching the immediately disappointing results of his triumph of morality.
The facial nuances of the female detective, seemed to make her look alternatively like Liv Tyler and a young Marcia Gay Harden, which caused no small amount of distraction for me. Of course, that was not her fault, but her character ended up being only marginally necessary and while that was also not her fault, it was a downside of the movie.
Casey Affleck is a slow talker like Owen Wilson. I just can't stand slow talkers. (L)