'Gone Baby Gone'

Casey Affleck in 'Gone Baby Gone' i i

Friends in low places: Casey Affleck's neighborhood connections help drive the dark Gone Baby Gone. Claire Folger/Miramax Films hide caption

itoggle caption Claire Folger/Miramax Films
Casey Affleck in 'Gone Baby Gone'

Friends in low places: Casey Affleck's neighborhood connections help drive the dark Gone Baby Gone.

Claire Folger/Miramax Films
  • Director: Ben Affleck
  • Genre: Crime thriller
  • Running Time: 114 minutes

Ben Affleck's directing debut, Casey Affleck's second knockout performance in a month (the first was as Jesse James' assassin), and source material by the author of Mystic River all qualify as fine reasons for catching this child-kidnapping mystery.

But there are plenty of subsidiary ones as well, including deft supporting performances by Ed Harris (as a hard-nosed detective) and Amy Ryan (as a piteously unfit mother), plus an ending guaranteed to leave audiences buzzing.

The case seems pretty straightforward at first, when private eye Casey Affleck gets hired by relatives of a child missing from his neighborhood to augment a police investigation. His local angle turns out to mean a lot, in ways I probably shouldn't reveal. Suffice it to say that the plot has surprises right through its final reel — and that the ending is a morally ambiguous corker.

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