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Overall Rating

Awesome: 13.33%
Worth A Look: 13.33%
Average: 13.33%
Pretty Bad: 6.67%
Total Crap53.33%

1 review, 9 user ratings

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Gone (2012)
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by Brett Gallman

"A new summit of laziness."
1 stars

The title of “Gone” provides the answer to a lot of questions that’ll be on your mind as you watch it lethargically spiral out of control. Chief among them will be “whither my time?,” “whither my money?” and “whither the talent involved?” Don’t ask me why you’re asking this using an archaic form of the word “where,” but the answer to all three is, yes, “gone” and sucked away into a vacuous experience that’s the equivalent of watching someone hammer out the first draft of a screenplay.

Among the many who deserve better is Amanda Seyfried, whose lead character, Jill, claims to have been abducted by a mysterious stranger about a year ago. As such, she spends her free time combing a nearby state park for evidence of further cases involving missing girls. She’s become a pariah to the local police force that writes her off each time she comes in pleading her case, so when her sister (Emily Wickersham) is abducted in the middle of the night, she’s again brushed off. This forces her to go vigilante (let that sink in--Amanda Seyfried: vigilante) to track her down.

The police are hesitant to help her because they believe her to be nuts; according to them, she fabricated her own abduction, and she even got shipped off to an insane asylum. It doesn’t take long before you start to wonder if they gave her a lobotomy while she was there, as this brain-dead script has Seyfried roaming around a perpetually gloomy Portland (this entire movie looks to have been shot through a lampshade), making the most illogical decisions possible. She starts by questioning her neighbors, thus setting off a chain of haphazardly plotted events that result in Seyfried slogging her way from point A to point B to point C.

By the time you arrive at, say, point F, the routine grows beyond tired, and is made all the more clunky by a succession of flashbacks. There are moments where you feel compelled to ponder certain plot holes, but to do so would be to dwell on them longer than screenwriter Allison Burnett did. Competent movies of this sort have a clear through-line in the sense that there’s a sustained object to chase; not here, as we watch Seyfried track down a truck, then a store, then a hotel, then another car, and so on and so forth. Each different encounter has her inventing some wild story to coax information out of people she meets, which would be a neat tic if there were any possible logic to it. This is a movie with ADD, but you wish it at least had ADHD; its plot is ludicrous, but its delivery is lugubrious and without any hint of irony. “Gone” is so deadly serious that it actually doesn’t have a pulse, and the only genuine laugh comes when Seyfried’s character is forced to admit that her judgment is impaired, a moment that lends itself to any number of jokes.

Only it’s really not all that funny when you consider how talented Seyfried is; her presence is undeniable, and the natural charm and gravitas she brings to the screen is the only redeeming quality of “Gone.” Her performances in “Mamma Mia” and the criminally underrated “Jennifer’s Body” seemingly announced her arrival, but she’s been slumming it ever since, and I can only hope that “Gone” represents the lowest point. Even her upcoming turn as Linda Lovelace couldn’t possibly involve more sucking or blowing than this. She’s not the only casualty, as the likes of Jennifer Carpenter, Michael Pare, and Wes Bentley (who acts so suspiciously that he might as well be wearing a neon sign that says “suspect”) drop in for a few scenes to shuttle the plot along.

The film’s most relevant and poignant image involves Seyfried being tossed into a deep, dark hole in the ground, a moment that sums “Gone” up perfectly. To watch it is to be similarly submerged into an abyss, and even Seyfried’s radiance can’t help you emerge and shake the feeling that you would have been better off tossing your money and time down into a hole.

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originally posted: 02/25/12 15:10:16
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User Comments

5/19/17 danR Pleased with good average of comments. Not great,not bad. Watchable/Fair/OK. 3.5 stars 3 stars
8/29/12 Alanna a good movie with intense buildup but the ending wasn't as dramatic as I would have wanted. 4 stars
5/28/12 Cassie not the best movie it was ok 3 stars
5/26/12 Kevin C where was the plausibility? 2 stars
3/19/12 Please say it ain't so, Amanda Now hear AmandaSeyfried'll play Linda Lovelace. That'll surely finishoff a promising talent 4 stars
3/16/12 Carol "...magnificent Amanda Seyfried's acting"? Eh gads! 1 stars
3/09/12 WHAT's with these "USA" comments???? Relax and be entertained. Suspense, not plausibility is its strong suit. 5 stars
3/08/12 Christina Todd The magnificient Amanda Seyfried's acting is fine enough to counteract any flaws herein. 5 stars
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  24-Feb-2012 (PG-13)
  DVD: 29-May-2012


  DVD: 29-May-2012

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