Gone Baby Gone - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Gone Baby Gone Reviews

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Super Reviewer
June 27, 2008
It was worth watching but is not high up on my crime dramas favorites list (if it ever existed).
Super Reviewer
October 21, 2007
The aunt of a young girl who goes missing hires two local private detectives to find her amidst the usual accompanying media frenzy. Gone Baby Gone was directed and co-written by Ben Affleck on his debut behind the camera but please don't let that put you off! It's actually one of the most refreshingly adult and well-written cop thrillers in recent memory. The story felt to me almost like L.A. Confidential done in the style of TV series The Wire, in that there is very little in the way of moralistic black and whites, all set in a ghetto-like environment with the associated colourful yet believable language and characters. It's a film that actually has something to say, examining questions of the personal sense of right and wrong and the cynical media hype machine milking such incidents for all their worth for its own gain. Of course having such superb acting talent involved certainly doesn't hurt, Affleck, Freeman and in particular Ed Harris are are excellent and Casey's brother shows an excellent eye in his surprisingly mature direction. It's not perfect; the story is perhaps a little convoluted as I felt that there was one too many twists for its own good, but aside from that there is very little to find fault with. One of the most accomplished directorial debuts I have seen in years and all this from the star of Gigli! Who would've dared to think...?
Super Reviewer
½ October 20, 2007
Ben Affleck's directional debut is a close look at the dark side of Boston, thematically related to Lehane's other novel Mystic River, which offered a similarly pessimistic outlook on crime, white trash and the moral compass of the city. Here, a hunt for a vanished girl, turns out to be much more complicated and layered than first expected. Affleck can rely on an excellent cast, especially Freeman and Harris deliver great performances once again. The plot is sometimes a tad slow until the conspiracy gets moving. The film does not reach the emotional depth of Mystic River or the adrenaline level of Affleck's follow-up The Town, but it's a realistic, gut-wrenching and disenchanting look at broken families, corrupt cops and morality. The protagonist's ultimate decision creates a very conflicting definition of what's right and what's wrong, and that's very cleverly done by leaving the audience alone with the consequences. That solution will make you think for quite a while after the film, and that's certainly what it intended to do. Well done.
Super Reviewer
½ September 9, 2010
I plan on watching this film again. I liked it, but not that much. Parts of it were great, but many other parts were dreadful. This film had great potential, but for me, it was only pretty good with a few special scenes to set it apart from other movies.

There were really only two things that I didn't like about this film, Casey Affleck's performance, and the language. Affleck's performance here felt really wooden to me. The film revolves around a child being kidnapped, but his performance did not reflect the intensity and emotion of the situation. There seemed to be an emotional disconnect. I didn't like that about the film. The language did not settle well with me, either. I have seen countless films with language as foul as foul gets (The Departed, The Fighter, Pulp Fiction), but here it really didn't work. It felt juvenile to me. Add the language to a flat leading performance...the first half of the film was not that good.

As for the rest of the film, I liked it. The story was involved and brilliantly executed by director, Ben Affleck. Supporting actors Morgan Freeman, Ed Harris, and Amy Ryan gived fantastic performances. Amy Ryan received an Oscar nomination for her performance; Ed Harris very well could have recieved also. He has a powerful monoloque scenes that ranks among his best performances. Michelle Monaghan also gives a strong performance, I just wish she could have had more screen time. The ending of the film was outstanding...so deep and highly thought provoking. I didn't think the film would leave much of an impact on me because I didn't like the first part, but the ending really made me think, and I can't deny that I was touched. Finally, the muscial score by Harry Gregson-Williams is great.

All-in-all, I still recommend this film. There were flaws, but it's very good and has a thought provoking message.
Super Reviewer
August 21, 2011
To be quite honest, I missed the very end of this because I'd recorded it off the TV and the tape ran out, but I don't believe I missed anything important. Although some clunky scene-shifting does betray a somewhat green director getting to grips with the vocabulary of storytelling, Ben Affleck marshals an excellent cast with remarkable assurance and, on the whole, his directorial debut shows great promise. It's an intelligent, thoughtful movie which raises some difficult moral questions by contrasting a couple of apparent paradoxes: the nobility of corruption versus the repugnance of 'doing the right thing'. Amy Ryan is superb.
Super Reviewer
April 17, 2010
An impressive directorial debut from Ben Affleck, I really like The Town as well which he directed and starred in. Based on a novel by Dennis Lehane he also wrote Mystic River which was a great entertaining if gritty and harsh film. This has many similar themes running through it. The cast is an amazing line up and all give good performances. It's the harshness, grim reality in terms of the setting, characters and subject matter that make the film intriguing as well as compelling viewing. A very interesting film, go and see it and Mystic River!
Super Reviewer
May 30, 2011
A honest, unbiased, harsh look at reality. Probably by the end, viewer will be left with a feeling of bitter hopelessness, but that is anything but a testament to how good a movie this is.

"How do you live in this world, and still be good enough to go to heaven", a question raised by the hero, is the recurring theme through out the movie. A little girl is abducted, and the movie unfolds through the story of two investigators who were hired to find her. At the end of their search, they're faced with a compelling question, whether the right thing to do is really the best thing to do.

The story may take one too many twists, but that doesn't really take our mind off the subject. Ben Affleck as a director really delivers, making sure that the characters look as real, normal and creepy as the real people out there; and maintaining a grim, heavy atmosphere from start to finish.
I would go so far as to say that I cant find anything wrong about this movie, but If someone had a gun pointed at my head and told me to point out one bad thing , I'll have to say it's the title of the movie.. An awful title considering the premise of the movie..
Super Reviewer
March 27, 2011
Gone Baby Gone is a masterpiece start to finish, ill never forget the best Directing Debut I have ever seen, what a treasure.
Super Reviewer
½ July 23, 2010
This was great. A very good drama. I loved this movie. It has a good story and a good twist. My favorite movie by Ben Affleck would probably be The Town but this was still very good. A-
Super Reviewer
September 18, 2010
highly underrated movie but the message becomes way too up front and preachy. terrific cast
Super Reviewer
March 13, 2008
"I will hate you for doing this, and I don't want to."

There have been a lot of solid movies set in Boston in recent years, but Gone Baby Gone tops even The Departed and Mystic River, as good as they both were. What starts off as a story about a missing child evolves into one of the most thought provoking and genuinely compelling movies that I've seen.

Ben Affleck has real talent as a director, and did an excellent job of maintaining the authenticity of both the story of the Dennis Lehane novel and the neighborhood that it's set in. Casey Affleck, Michelle Monaghan, Ed Harris, Morgan Freeman, and Amy Ryan were all perfectly cast, and give stellar performances.

Gone Baby Gone is just one of those movies that it's hard to find a flaw with. It's expertly made, sticks with you, and doesn't offer any easy answers. Highly recommended. 
Super Reviewer
½ October 23, 2007
Way better than expected. The story itself deals with a tough issue that leaves you feeling like there is no answer. What really shines though is the acting, especially that of Ed Harris.
Super Reviewer
February 17, 2008
I wasn't really too sure what to expect, but this is actually a pretty good little crime drama/mystery film. You can really tell that the film is reaching for greatness and trying to be a masterpiece or something important, and, while it doesn't succeed at doing that, it still manages to be very engrossing, atmospheric, and good. The performances are very good, especially Amy Ryan. The veteran actors prove their reliability, and don't look like they're just in it for a paycheck. I'd like to see Ben Affleck direct some more. I can't say if this will be just a one hit wonder for him as a director, but it does show he has some capability behind a camera.
Super Reviewer
½ October 21, 2007
A slam-bang knockout. A heck of an emotional ride, with rich performances all-around. Amy Ryan should win an Oscar hands down, and I have no idea why Ed Harris wasn't nominated here. One of the best films of 2008, a lot of twists and turns in the plot to keep one interested, while also teaching an extremely important moral lesson. Kudos to Ben Affleck for his keen eye of the Boston area, as well as writer Dennis Lehane's bravery for daring to pose a crippling moral question not only to his lead character, but to his audience as well. My only slight gripe with the film is that it loses a little bit of steam in between the two main stories, but that aside, this is a near-masterpiece of a film.
Super Reviewer
January 14, 2010
Should have owned oscar night in 2007, right along side of no country for old men! This film is a true masterpiece!
Super Reviewer
½ October 4, 2007
A shocking and emotional powerhouse of a movie. A powerful, magnetic and unforgettable thriller. A total complete triumph. Director, Ben Affleck has crafted a beautiful, nerve-tangling and breathtaking film. A fantastic directional debut. He has established himself as potential and superb filmmaker. A stylish, fearless, endlessly compelling and intensely gripping film. An excellent movie all the way to the end. A stunning cast. Cassey Affleck is outstanding, giving a totally committed and groundbreaking performance. Michelle Monaghan is stunning. Morgan Freeman is terrific. Ed Harris is a powerhouse. Performances that will be remembered for years. An engaging, chilling and blistering crime drama. Extraordinary and superbly executed. Heart-pounding, dazzling and haunting. The suspense will keep you guessing and your pulse-racing all the way to it's amazing end that you wont ever forget. Films with an impact like this should not be missed.
Super Reviewer
½ November 18, 2009
Really well written and performed. A very realistic approach with lots of cultural devotion and convincing characters. At times it feels like a documentary because the people are so real. Ben Affleck did an amazing first job at directing and I feel it's only going to get better. Casey Affleck and Michelle Monaghan were perfect, they were just so entertaining and true at the same time.
Super Reviewer
October 6, 2009
This is the best movie I have seen in 2009. This movie was far from what I thought it was going to be. I put off watching it. I am sorry I did. When movie opened I thought to myself that Casey Affleck wasn't the man for the part, boy was I wrong. When I look at the awards this movie got I see that Michelle Monaghan got most of the awards, Casey deserved more, as he played an excellent part, and it wasn't a movie that featured Morgan Freeman. He was in it but his appearance didn't make the move. This is a 5 star and more movie. Will keep you on the edge of your seat the entire time. Yes sir 5 stars.
Super Reviewer
½ August 10, 2007
Ok, so maybe Family Guy was wrong, and Ben Affleck did have more to do with Good Will Hunting than eating Fritos and getting high...

Though there are some very cliched scenes stretched too far by extraneous, stagey dialogue that's soap-opera bad in spots, this film gets high marks for its moral ambiguity - it's one of the few films I've recently seen that have really made me ask questions, and it's a tough one to wrestle with. Ed Harris is brilliant, and Boston looks beautiful - all in all, it's a very good first outing for Affleck as a director, and this is without a doubt one of 2007's better films.
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