Movie ramblings: Gone

I watched 2 movies today, the first was Gone ( described as “A contemporary psychological thriller in which a young British couple travelling through the Australian outback become involved with a mysterious and charismatic American” – IMDB.

My conclusion: I don’t give stars but it was reasonably enjoyable but not really any good.

Essentially this is your basic backpacking in paradise holiday gone bad thriller story.  Strangely, despite being set in Australia, the main characters are British and American and even the secondary characters are Europeans (there’s a Kiwi in the deleted scenes with a speaking role).  I guess it is nice though that the main bad guy doesn’t turn out to be the stereotypical backwoods hillbilly type.

Warning, spoilers below:

So essentially this bloke has come to Australia to meet his girlfriend who is already backpacking.  He meets an American who hangs out with him and gives him a ride to meet the girl.  The American uses charm and blackmail to convince the couple to travel with him and gradually tries to break them up and sleep with the girl.  It is pretty straightforward and there are no real twists to the story but the sense of tension is quite nicely done and the acting and dialogue is pretty good.

But here’s where it falls down: the main couple are idiots.  There is nothing that the American does that would have worked if these 2 fools had spent 2 minutes having an honest conversation with each other.  By the time they actually do talk honestly to each other it is too late and they already have been convinced by the charismatic American not to trust each other. Several times during the film they decide to leave and carry on traveling without him and yet unaccountably get back into his van with him.

Towards the climax of the film our “hero” becomes convinced that his American friend is a. trying to steal his girlfriend and b. trying to kill him.  And yet he continues to travel with him!  And he accepts food and drink and medicines from this man when he thinks that he is trying to kill him.

Not much later he can be pretty damn certain that his erstwhile friend means him harm and probably wants to kill him steal his girlfriend and yet he still sleeps alone, doesn’t explain his fears to his girlfriend and lets the bloody American into his bedroom.  To compound his stupidity he actually believes the guy when he tells him that his girlfriend got him a bus ticket and wants him to go away alone.

Once her boyfriend has disappeared, the girl obviously turns to the very supportive and helpful American for help and, despite the warnings she had from her boyfriend gets seduced by him and sleeps with him less than 2 days after her boyfriend disappears.  At this point she finds out that the American faked her boyfriend’s disappearance and the last few minutes of the film are pretty much a stock teen slasher chase scene where they run around the outback, she does the stereotypical frantically trying to start the car while the killer tries to get in and spends so much time screaming and flapping ineffectually that she could have driven to Sydney and back if she’d just shut the hell up.

Anyway, the final scenes of her driving the car and him trying to get in are pretty good and partly original and the ending pretty standard.

I don’t give stars but this film was reasonably enjoyable while at the same time not really any good.


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