Gone Baby Gone Review

“Children Are Plot Devices, Not Characters.”

November 17th, 2011

It took me a while to realize why I didn't like this movie, apart from the insistent Baston accents. "A little goes a lah-ng wayy," "Less is mo-ah..." It had to do with the way the story treats children. I would say that the story is as inhumane to the children in it as the monster(s) that prey on them. These kids are objectified as plot devices that I am supposed to be sad about as opposed to other films where some equally horrible things happen to children but they are treated as characters, not things. Pan's Labyrinth, Devil's Backbone, Let the Right One In, I'm Not Scared, The Orphanage(maybe), etc. What did we learn about the girl or the boy, whose names I can't remember, in Gone Baby Gone? Nothing. They were more objects to feel sad about, not people whose loss can be felt and emoted over. Also, when a certain character ignores the advice of Spike Lee's Mayor by not doing the right thing, I really didn't care for her existence anymore. After the,"You do this and I'm leaving you," spiel. Ben did a fine job directing, I guess. But what was it that made it his movie? Anyone else could have directed and I wouldn't have noticed. As if the movie wasn't depressing enough, it, along with Mystic River, feels like child abuse is the only evil left without some kind of justification. 'Sometimes lying, stealing, and killing are okay. But not THAT.' Maybe I'm old fashioned.

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