Brilliant Alex of And so it Begins let me borrow his awesome idea for things I love about ... that no one talks about again. I did the last one on The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and now it's, to surprise of no one, another Fincher's movie, one that is still my favorite film of 2014 (I still haven't seen Birdman or Foxcatcher but I can't see Gone Girl falling from the top place). It turns out that this list grew really extensive so I'm dividing it into two parts, the next one will be posted next Sunday.
Here we go:
1. Completely random shots of deer and raccoon (that thing in the background here) in the opening credits. What is up with that? Also that commentary by Fincher about the location is priceless - Location scouts went out for about 3 weeks to find a small town that could double for North Carthage, Missouri, which is a fabricated town that Gillian created in her head. We had people combing, you know, from the actual town of Carthage, Missouri, through Springfield and up along the Mississippi into St. Louis and one day I got these pictures of Cape Girardeau and I sent them immediately to Gillian and said, ‘I think we found the town, I think we found North Carthage and I think it’s gonna be this town called Cape Girardeau’ and she said, ‘Oh God, Cape Girardeau is perfect! That’s kind of what I had in my head when I was writing it.’ I was like, ‘You don’t have to keep this a fucking secret. If you have ideas about where these things should take place, if you wanna hip us to what you had in your head when you were actually writing it, by all means, feel free to.’
2. The name of the game Nick brings to the Bar is Mastermind.
3. Margo's Protect Your Nuts shirt.
4. The look on Margo's face as she correctly guesses Amy is the reason for Nick's bad mood. You can tell this is the situation that happened many times in the past and Margo is always there for Nick when Amy gives him a hard time
5. The shot of glass sliding towards Nick.
6. This shot is a bit more telling than you might think. It's a perfect bridge between real Amy and diary Amy. On one hand Amy is this spider that just caught a man in her trap. But Diary Amy is thrilled because here is the man taking her. Nick and Diary's Amy perspective of the event is the complete opposite to what is actually happening. Amy's cool girl web caught a victim.
7. Flynn and Fincher using pussy(cat) to establish that Nick is a good guy. Look he goes down on a woman on their first date! Look he likes that cat and protects him!
8. The shuddering way with which Nick shouts 'AMY!' as he realizes she is gone. They may have issues but this is the shout of someone who is really upset.
9. The fact that the cat has his own room.
10. Boney's little fangirl moment as she realizes Amy is the Amazing Amy.
11. The attention to detail - look at the pen Amy uses to write Amazing Amy entry.
12. There's that attention to detail again. This only helps to establish that Amazing Amy is always that ghost haunting Amy. Fincher left so many bread crumbs here and it's kinda embarrassing how many people still go 'what made her the way she was?' after the movie is over. This is one of the few movies I've seen that are literally too smart for its audience.
13. Lisa Banes as Amy's frigid, controlling mother. So little screentime but it's enough to know that this woman made Amy's life a living hell.
14. Shall I know my wife's blood type? - No!
15. The little element of humor here with Nick's father. In the book Nick's father is a part of Amy's plan, the most diabolical part, really, but here it felt like a good nod to book readers since clearly Flynn and Fincher decided there is no time to explain the significance of Nick's dad.
16. The choice of music here and the amount of passive aggressiveness in Nick.
17. The sole interaction between these two awesome ladies.
18. The fact that Amy's mother uses even this occasion to advertise the book series.
19. The stark contrast between Nick's idiotic smile and this image - The Elliotts look like the walking dead.
20. Nick's joy at figuring out Amy's puzzle. Amy may make his life a nightmare but he enjoys playing that game.
21. Amy's mysterious and eerie narration of the first clue.
22. Any other director would zoom in on Nick hiding clue two. But not Fincher.
23. That gorgeous shot.
24. The way Amy looks, sounds and acts in flashbacks. She is truly angelic.
25. Amy's mother commenting how this place smells like feces. Somehow you sense this might have been Amy's attitude too.
26. This shot.
27. The way Amy's says a baby would be 'an inspiration'. Even if you know the truth Rosamund Pike's delivery of that line is shattering.
28. The way this sequence is shot. It's so shocking and chilling.
29. "Are they supertwat's?!"
30. "Well, if Tiffany says". The familiarity between Boney and Gillpin. You can tell they are small town cops who worked with each other a while. With Boney you also get a sense of her being very professional and impressively not overwhelmed even though this is the biggest case she worked on yet.
31. That shot.
32. The blind fury with which Affleck yells 'BECAUSE SHE TOLD ME TO!'
33. The glass shattering on the floor.
34. The way everything slows down as Boney makes the biggest discovery in the case.
35. That shot. The amount of times Fincher managed to sneak in the shots of the back of Amy's head - the source of all the ideas, schemes and intrigues - is so cool.
36. Amy's narration of this moment - the way she says 'sometimes' sends the chills down my spine every time.
37. The way this moment is shot. You can just feel Nick's world collapsing.
38. In the script this moment is called 'the picture of freedom'. They nailed it.
39. The close up of Amy's list. Look how meticulous it is.
40. This badass moment.
41. The fury, contempt and rage Amy has for Amazing Amy pen before throwing it out the window.
42. One of the books here - Helter Skelter - is about Manson family murders. One of the murders described in the book in the murder of pregnant Shanon Tate. The police is led to believe Amy was pregnant when she died.
43. This look of sadness on Amy's face. There is so much range in Pike's performance here. Why is Amy crying? Is it something she is watching on TV? Or is it Nick's betrayal? Either way her emotions negate your usual descriptions of psychopaths and sociopaths.
44. Amy's efficiency. Taking care of her looks while framing her husband for her murder.
45. "Happy anniversary".
46. The fact that this exists.
47. The joy on Amy's face as she is changing the alarm.
48. There's that back of the head again.
49. The balls on Fincher - of actually featuring that shot in trailers.
50. Amy coughing after she takes a drag of cigarette - it's such a small but great detail.
51. Amy's love for food - you can tell that like many, she had to starve herself to keep her figure. But now she is free.
52. The sheer look of anger on Amy's face as she is driving by the cool girls.
53. "I was fucking game".
54. The hammer scene (which didn't happen in the book) and the accompanying lines about grown ups. Such a shocking way to end that montage.