Another bright fellow from The New Yorker (i.e., Joshua Rothman) has pointed out what 85% to 90% of the crowd refuses to acknowledge (or is unable to grasp due to an insufficient brain-cell count or obstinacy or whatever) — i.e., Gone Girl is about a lot more than just the plot.
“Gone Girl, in a sense, is Fight Club squared,” Rothman states. “To explore the positive and negative sides of the manliness myth, Fincher had only to propose a single character, a man with a ‘disassociated” personality (Brad Pitt’s enraged Tyler Durden is the alter ego of Edward Norton’s unnamed, milquetoast protagonist). Gone Girl demands two bifurcated people, each of whom must play both the victim and the aggressor. And the mythos of coupledom is more complex and troubled than the mythos of manliness.
“Even back in 1999, when Fight Club came out, there was something trumped-up and artificial about the idea that men were experiencing a crisis of masculine disenchantment. (The urgency of that crisis, if it did exist, certainly seems to have faded.) Coupledom, on the other hand, is and remains genuinely fraught territory. While our cultural imagination no longer fixates on the Great War or the Western frontier, the idea of the perfect couple (and, especially, the perfect wife) is still alive and well.
“Gone Girl is fascinating because it gets at what is unsettling about coupledom: our suspicion that, in some fundamental sense, it necessarily entails victimization. Just as Fight Club showed that manliness and violence were imaginatively inseparable, Gone Girl raises the possibility that marriage and victimhood are inseparable, too.”