why i loved the ending of gone girl

Why I loved the ending of Gone Girl by Mama Mary Show

I loved the ending of Gone Girl, both the book AND the movie versions (though they really weren’t as different as the media said they were going to be), for several reasons.

***SPOILER ALERT!!!***

First of all,  it’s fiction, far-fetched fiction. Though Amy Elliott Dunne proves to be a certifiable psychopath who, in the real world, should never be able to get away scott-free with such a deranged plan, the ending had to evoke high emotion and drama in order to match the level of crazy in the rest of the book.

When finishing the book I remember thinking, wait, is that it? Is that how it ends? But after more consideration I realized there was not a more perfect ending. Of course they end up together, who else are they going to be with? And how else could it possibly end that fits the characters and the underlying vibe of the book (a BlogHer blogger agrees with me on this one)?

Which leads me to the next point. . .

Though the story is far-fetched fiction, as mentioned above, the crux of the story is still very much based on reality. As many posts have asserted, the real villain in Gone Girl is marriage and one of the reasons people are having such a visceral reaction to this story, is that the relationship between Nick and Amy is unfortunately very relatable and real (at least to those who have been married for a significant amount of time).  Amy & Nick’s marriage is an exaggerated example of what can happen in marriages, even the best of them, when resentment, manipulation and disappointment take the place of communication and affection.

No one warns newlyweds that betrayals happen and resentment builds, inevitably and without warning. No one tells newlyweds that “for better or for worse” really translates to, “life is really fucking hard and you might wake up one day doubting or maybe even despising the person laying next to you.”

No one tells them that because they wouldn’t begin to grasp the warnings anyway.  There is no way to conceptualize how time and life can conspire to slowly unravel a once tightly knit intimate relationship.

Okay, so Amy’s reaction to the unraveling of her marriage is a wee bit extreme (and psychotic and perverse and horrifying), but that’s what makes Gillian Flynn’s story so appealing and captivating. The gal wanted to sell books, right?

I posted a simple question on my Facebook page after the movie  was first released asking who had seen it and what they thought. The post received many mixed reviews.  One friend commented:

“Are people upset with the book, and the movie for that matter, because of its bleak portrayal of relationships–that we are all trapped in one form or another, unable to communicate our needs and feelings appropriately to our partners? In the end, they deserved each other. Both liars, cheats, narcissists and abusers.”

To answer his questions, yes, I do think that is one of the reasons people are upset, and, I agree with his statement in that, though the movie didn’t show Nick as an asshole as much as the book did, I got the feeling that in the end, they chose each other, they’re going to stay together and see it through together. And again, who the hell else are they going to be with?

We’ve all seen couples who stay together for the wrong reasons or because they feel like they have no other option. The ending is very much a parallel to what happens in real life (aside from the murder and the vindictive frame for murder).

It is quite possible that this line of thinking was brought on by my current state of relationship, um, limbo. Maybe, maybe not. Either way, I think Gillian Flynn created a clever, mind-fuck of a story with a perfectly fitting ending and David Fincher, Ben Affleck & Rosamund Pike did it wicked justice.

What did you think of the film? How about the ending?

[pinit]

2 Comments

  1. 1
    beckie webster says:

    This book was one of my all time favorites because I couldn’t imagine what was going to happen next. Amy was so clever and cunning, almost admirable…Almost. At least Gillian Flynn is to be admired, and maybe even feared. To be able to tell reality in such a perverse way. I saw the movie about a week ago, wanted to see it before I heard too much about it. The movie did not dissappoint, neither did the ending. I agree that when I read the book and got to the end, “I was thinking WTF?” But no other ending would’ve worked. I’d be interested to know if she tried other endings, and realized they fell flat. The ending was as messed up as the entire book/movie.

  2. 2
    Laura says:

    I still don’t love the ending of the book/movie although I enjoyed reading the book right up until the end. Your review is beautifully written and I really enjoyed your perspective. But…..I am the kind of person who likes a tidy ending that persecutes the bad guy. They were both admittedly bad guys, but Amy was the true villian and I would have been satisfied if she had been held accountable for her actions.

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