Amanda Seyfried’s suspense thriller Gone isn’t a bad one, it just never really
goes anywhere. Gone is what I would call a step above Lifetime movies. It has enough
basic interest surrounding Seyfried’s character that you will almost watch it just
to see how things turn out, even though the ending is much less exciting than the
road to get there. After Mama Mia, the first film that really ignited her career,
Seyfried has been a hit and miss at the financial and critical level. Gone is only
the second time Seyfried has attempted to drive a film simply on her own stardom
and ability (the previous was Letters to Juliet). I admire Seyfried for dabbling
in such a wide variety of genres and challenging herself as an actress, but this
film is a play by numbers.
After being abducted last year, Jill (Seyfried) went through intense therapy because
of the severe post traumatic stress. She was the only survivor of a kidnapper who
the police believe doesn’t exist. Jill’s escape and near brush with death has left
her understandably paranoid that this guy will come after her again. Now living with
her sister, the day before Molly’s big test she has been studying for, her sister
disappears. Jill is certain this guy is back, but instead grabbed her sister to toy
with her. The police don’t believe her and will not provide help, so Jill must do
her own investigating to save her sister before it’s too late.
Most critics, like me and some viewers, like for films to challenge them. We watch
so many films during a week or a month that the plots and characters get extremely
repetitive. Gone is a film for those who want things very basic and simple. The most
contemplative issue plaguing this plot line is whether Jill is crazy or there is
someone really after her. Gone is also the type of movie during which you can be
cleaning your house, grading papers, or maybe even carrying on a conversation and
not really miss anything that happens. I thought of Ashley Judd in Double Jeopardy
or maybe even Sandra Bullock in The Net, but Gone makes those two look like masterpieces.
I found the supporting characters extremely annoying, not because none of them
believe her, but because they all seem to be wrong in their roles and add nothing
to the film. The ending is the biggest problem; it's like waiting a long time for
a meal and, when it arrives and you are starving, it's not good and a very small
portion. Seyfried seems to excel when she is working with more provocative material.
While the thriller Chloe she did with Julianne Moore wasn’t a great film, it certainly
Final Thought – Provides no challenge for the viewer.