The Game (1997)

It’s consistently astonishing to me that David Fincher’s “The Game” doesn’t get more love than it does. After all, it’s one of the most compelling, unpredictable thrillers of the 1990s, and it keeps the audience guessing from beginning to end. It’s marvelously well shot by Fincher as well, who extracts the opulence that surrounds Michael Douglas in the lead as a privileged businessman who finds his life thrown into chaos by a shadowy organization brought to him by wayward brother Sean Penn. Along the way, he meets the fascinating Deborah Kara Unger, and the two share an icy chemistry that manages to sell some of the more improbable aspects of the astute, intricate plot that propels the narrative forward like a runaway train. The climax is perhaps a little over the top, but on the way there, Fincher and his cast manage to get so much right that you’re willing to suspend your disbelief, and the final impression is one of appreciation and respect. It’s not often that a movie earns an audience’s trust, but this is one of those movies like “Psycho” and “The Sixth Sense” that should be experienced sight unseen the first time.

Rating: ★★★★★ (out of 5)

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