The Game

The Game ★★★★½

Part of Essential Films To Watch

"I don't care about the money. I'm pulling back the curtain. I want to meet the wizard."

Sometimes you have to lose yourself in order to find yourself.

That's the idea behind Fincher's The Game, handled with passion, dedication and detail. To call The Game anything less than a masterpiece is an absolute tragedy. What is considered as one of David Fincher's most minor works, for me, is one of his best. Along with Zodiac, The Game demonstrates Fincher at his best - a man who has perfected the art of filmmaking, and mastered the techniques in crafting eerie, ominous atmospheres. This is a film I enjoy more than Gone Girl, Fight Club and Se7en, both subjectively and objectively.

The technicalities of The Game are meticulously crafted by Fincher, but the real focal point behind this film is its story, and a committed performance from Michael Douglas - an actor I haven't adequately appreciated up until this point. Alongside him is a very talented supporting cast, including a young Sean Penn, and Deborah Kara Unger, who is totally convincing in her role.

The film plays out as a puzzle, much like the poster suggests. As it progresses, you start connecting the pieces, only to have the entire puzzle shatter in front of your face during the enthralling finale. Many people criticize the film solely on its rewatchability, but there are great films that are only meant to be experienced once. At the conclusion of Henri Georges Clouzot's Diabolique, the director warns the audience not to spoil the film for future audiences. Fincher's The Game is very much the same - yes, there's a twist, but the thing that separates The Game from Fincher's other works is that the beauty isn't in the twist, but rather, it's watching the story behind the twist unfold, little by little. This is a film I'd definitely recommend to any and all, as it is an underrated gem.

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