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David Fincher Is An Even More Devious Filmmaker Than You Think

By Petr Knava | Videos | October 9, 2015 |

By Petr Knava | Videos | October 9, 2015 |

David Fincher is a master craftsman. This is known.

By all accounts an obsessive perfectionist in the Kubrick mould, Fincher’s cold, clinical precision; distinctive colour palette; and powerful visceral thrills have made him one of the standout modern American auteurs.

Last year’s Gone Girl was a Fincher offering which, while I would personally not class amongst his absolute best, still stands up as a fantastic bit of moviemaking.

(Since you ask: Zodiac, The Social Network, and Fight Club are the three to beat.)

It stands up because it’s twisty, malevolent, and — a word that might as well be the director’s middle name — meticulous. With very few exceptions (sorrynotsorry, Benjamin Button), I make it my mission to get to the cinema whenever there is a new Fincher out, as all those layers and techniques of his can only really be fully imbibed from a big screen.

After my first viewing of Gone Girl — and specifically after the physical effects of the cinematic rollercoaster had faded — I started to reflect on a technique I had only vaguely consciously registered, and in fact thought perhaps I’d just imagined: a generous, and very effective use of doubling. Locations, shots, dialogue. All seemed to be replicated again and again, creating a necessary and palpable sense of unease and disorientation; but I couldn’t be sure, and I never got around to going back for a second helping to confirm or refute this.

Until now! Thanks, Vimeo!

Fincher, you devious devil, you!

Gone Girl - Back Again from Love of Film on Vimeo.

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Petr is a staff contributor. You can follow him on Twitter.