Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Gone (2012)

Jill (Amanda Seyfried) is still trying to recover from the traumatic experience that changed her life. One night, while sleeping, Jill was snatched out of her bed. She was kidnapped by an unknown serial killer, who eventually threw her down a dark hole in the forest. Jill managed to escape, but the kidnapping would continue to haunt her thoughts.

One year later, Jill has found a steady job as a waitress, and she lives with her sister, Molly (Emily Wickersham), who happens to be a recovering alcoholic. Everything is calm in Jill’s new life at first, but a big tip from a regular customer begins to raise some suspicions. Jill questions the generosity of the unknown customer, but she’ll have to deal with bigger problems soon enough. Molly is missing, and Jill begins to panic. Jill suspects the unknown serial killer, who abducted her one year ago, but the police don’t want to believe or help Jill. The police couldn’t find any evidence from Jill’s kidnapping one year ago, and Jill did spend time in a psychiatric institution. The police don’t believe her wild story, but Jill is armed with a gun, and she will have to do everything she can on her own, if she wants to save Molly, because the serial killer will stop at nothing to get his revenge.

Ugh, I always want to have some hope for Amanda Seyfried’s career, but she has a bad habit of starring in some really awful films, and Gone doesn’t break her streak of stinkers, unfortunately.

This was supposed to be a suspense/thriller, but Gone just bored me to death the entire time. This film slowly goes through the motions, and the painful boredom almost put me to sleep. Gone was building towards a shocking surprise at the end, but the BIG twist was so disappointing.

Jim McCoy is the mysterious customer, and he is the abductor, who kidnapped Jill one year ago. McCoy is the man, who kidnapped Molly, obviously, but where is she? Where is he hiding her? Is she still alive? This was the big mystery, that kept you guessing throughout the film. It felt like they were building towards a shocking surprise at the end, but Molly’s whereabouts just brought a facepalm out of me.

Well, Jill wasn’t as crazy as everyone thought, because her sister was abducted. Jill’s search and rescue mission was a failure, and the police couldn’t find Molly, because all of them didn’t look in one special place….. Jill and Molly’s house. That’s right. McCoy broke into Jill’s home, abducted Molly, and then he had the bright idea of hiding her under the house? Really? McCoy is supposed to be this elusive and smart serial killer, and he hides Molly under the house? Also, Jill and the police never thought to look around the outside area of the house? Are you serious?

Yeah, I know, I get the whole idea of the “Molly was at home the entire time” twist. They were going for a clever and shocking twist, and predicting Molly’s location or status (dead or alive) was a pretty tricky task. Molly was underneath the house the entire time, and nobody could’ve seen this coming, because why in the hell would McCoy hide the victim at their own house? It’s the last place you would think of, but still, this shocking twist didn’t do anything for me. “I just had to sit through this piece of shit for over an hour, and she was at the house the entire time. Wow.” This is how I felt towards the end of the film, and for me, the big shocking surprise was incredibly lame. Having to sit through this boring and lifeless thriller was bad enough, but the “she was at home the entire time” stuff just made everything worse.
**End spoilers**

Discovering Molly’s location was disappointing enough, but Jill’s final showdown with the killer was just laughable.


So we’re in the final moments of the film, and Jill knows McCoy’s identity. Through a series of preposterous circumstances, Molly acquires McCoy’s phone number. McCoy is still bitter about Jill’s escape one year ago, and he wants to punish “the one, who got away.” Jill talks McCoy into giving her Molly’s location….but only under one condition: Molly must meet him face to face first. Jill agrees, and this might sound stupid, but you have to remember, this was a woman, who wanted to save her sister’s life, and she was willing to do anything for her safety, so I can understand the sense of urgency here.

Now keep in my mind, Jill still DOESN’T know Molly is safe at home during the phone conversation with McCoy. She still believes Molly’s life is in danger, and McCoy could kill her at any minute. Anyway, while following McCoy’s instructions, Jill drives through the same forest she escaped from one year ago, and the deep, dark hole that was her prison just happens to be the final stop. Well, this whole set up was a trap. McCoy suddenly pops out of his hiding spot, and he throws Jill into the hole. McCoy tries to finish what he started one year ago, but Jill takes out her gun, and shoots him in the chest. Jill climbs out of the hole, and McCoy reveals Molly’s location, as he begs for his life. But Jill isn’t so sympathetic, and she hasn’t forgotten the abduction, so she decides to burn McCoy to death.

…Wait. So Molly’s abduction was just one giant diversion? It was just a distraction, so McCoy could have another shot at killing Jill? This was his big plan? Really?!?!? Ummm, If McCoy was able to sneak into Jill’s house so easily, why would he waste time taking Jill’s sister? He could’ve easily grabbed Jill again, and Molly’s abduction was very unnecessary, when you stop and think about it.

Okay, so McCoy is dead, and Molly is safe. Jill should do the right thing and tell the truth, right? After all, she has nothing to hide. McCoy is dead, and she’s the only one, who knows the location of the body. Well, Jill should’ve told the truth, but after her reunion with Molly, she simply agrees with police’s earlier assumptions about the “whole thing being in her head.” Apparently, McCoy was just apart of her imagination, and the kidnappings never happened in the first place.

But wait, it gets better!

An anonymous tipster (gee, I wonder who this could be) sends pictures of McCoy’s victims to the police station, and of course, these pictures include a shot of Jill. The incompetent Lieutenant decides to re-open the case, and Gone FINALLY ends.

I had already given up on Gone at this point, but the ending was so ridiculous. Jill knows, who the killer is, she has the proof, that could help the police, knows the location of the body, but she decides to hide everything from the cops? And to top it off, she submits the proof, as an anonymous tipster? That doesn’t make any sense at all. Jill had no reason to hide ANYTHING, and Seyfried’s character could’ve easily helped the police. The anonymous tipster stuff was a poor attempt at trying to be too crafty, but just like Molly’s location, this final twist fell flat. It wasn’t smart or crafty, and I couldn’t feel the shock value at all.

So in the end, Molly was under the house the entire time, McCoy really isn’t this smart and clever serial killer, because if he was, he would’ve just taken Jill in the first place, and the Lieutenant re-opens the case for a dead guy. Great. Just great.
**End spoilers**

Story wise, this film was atrocious, and Gone almost gave me a headache. The police don’t want to help Jill find her sister, but when she turns into the lone woman on a mission with a gun, they try to arrest her. But still, they don’t make the slightest effort to find her sister? And Jill’s path to McCoy’s identity was completely ridiculous. Seyfried’s character constantly tells these wild lies (which include a thief stealing her grandmother’s bicycle) and preposterous stories, as she tries to gather information about Jill’s whereabouts and the serial killer’s identity. You can only push the suspension of disbelief stuff so far. Bottom line, Jill’s path to McCoy wasn’t believable at all. “Nobody can be THIS stupid. It’s impossible.” This is how I felt, as Jill lied her way to the truth, and watching other characters buy into Jill’s obvious lies did bring a good amount of laughs out of me.

As usual, Amanda Seyfried tried her best, and she did give a good effort here, but she couldn’t save this one. Gone is a bland and dull suspense/thriller. This film features way too many unintentionally funny moments, and at times, Gone did feel like this bizarre comedy. I couldn’t take this film seriously, and the overload of preposterous material (mainly the scenes that involve Jill’s wild lies) didn’t help anything. Overall, the acting is mediocre at best, and the twists at the end didn’t provide that satisfying payoff I was looking for. Gone does feel like straight-to-video material, and this one really didn’t deserve a theatrical release.

Amamnda Seyfried might have that one memorable film in the future, but her career has already taken a turn for the worst. She has starred in a handful of bad films over the years, and Gone could be that one potential career killer on her resumé.

Final Rating: 0/10

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