Following the dark and disturbing Seven, David Fincher
brings us this dark and disturbing comedy about a man
driven to the edge over a dumb game. The man is Nicolas
Van Orten, (or Gorden Gekko) played by Douglas, who is
invited to play a game by his slightly mad brother, played
by Penn. Douglas, bizzarely, accepts, and his life is turned
upside down. While for Douglas, the game is a scary
experience, for the audience, it's all a bit silly.
One of the problems with this film is that it inserts far too
many twists into the tale, some of them making no sense at
all. Whenever the film feels like it, it will put a twist in.
This is fine for some movies, but in The Game, it frankly
gets really dumb. Also, the ending can't hold up to explain
why there are all these twists!
Also, the ending is awful. I've seen this bad endings (like
Halloweens) but this one's is really pathetic. After having
releative fun (I just ignored the twists after a while) the
ending just spoiled the whole thing. Tragic.
So, what are the high points? Well, the film is reasonably
good fun (if a bit overlong) and it is bound to keep you
entertained until the last ten minutes. Douglas gives us a
fine performance (even though he had already played the
same character in Oliver Stones Wall Street) and Penn is
good as the brother. Douglas's 'girlfriend' during the film is
alright, and the supporting cast are all OK as well. The
direction is adequete, if occasionaly a little dull, but it never
reaches the dizzy heights of Seven. Fincher has given us a
film that is a little better than Alien 3 (although I quite
enjoyed that movie) but nowhere near as good as Seven.
Overall, then, The Game is a silly film, yet's it fun, but
with the worst ending of 1997. Which is a shame.
Copyright © 1997 David Wilcock