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Gone Baby Gone is a 2007 Americanmarker crime drama/mystery film directed by Ben Affleck and starring Casey Affleck. The screenplay by Ben Affleck and Aaron Stockard is based on the novel of the same name by Dennis Lehane, author of Mystic River. The plot centers on two private investigators, Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro, hunting for an abducted four-year-old girl from the Bostonmarker neighborhood of Dorchestermarker.


Private investigator Patrick Kenzie (Casey Affleck) and his partner and girlfriend Angie Gennaro (Michelle Monaghan) witness a televised plea by a woman named Helene McCready (Amy Ryan) for the return of her missing daughter Amanda, who was abducted with her favorite doll "Mirabelle". Patrick and Angie are then hired by the child's Aunt Beatrice to find Amanda and discover that Helene and her boyfriend "Skinny Ray" had recently stolen money from a local drug lord. After Ray is murdered, Patrick and Angie join the police detectives investigating the case, Nick Poole and Remy Bressant (who inform Patrick and Angie that they did not know Ray), to arrange a trade of the money for Amanda. Police Captain Doyle shows Patrick a telephone transcript of the drug lord setting up an exchange for Amanda. The exchange at a nearby quarry in Quincymarker is botched and Amanda is believed to have drowned, as her doll is found in the quarry and returned to Helene. Doyle, whose own daughter was killed years before, takes responsibility for the death and goes into early retirement.

Two months later, a seven-year-old boy is abducted in Everettmarker and Patrick receives information that the boy was taken by a known child molester. After entering his house and finding evidence of the abducted boy, Patrick returns with Nick and Remy to rescue him. They are seen by the residents and Nick is shot. Patrick enters the house during the shootout and finds one of the residents dead. He retreats into the child molester's room, where he finds the child molester (in the room) and the boy's dead body (in the bathroom), and he deliberately kills the child molester by shooting him in the back of the head.

Nick later dies in a hospital. Trying to alleviate Patrick's guilt over the events at the house, Remy unthinkingly confides that he once planted evidence on someone with the help of "Skinny Ray". Remy's lie about not knowing Ray during the investigation puzzles Patrick, who then speaks to a police officer (Michael K. Williams) after Nick's funeral. The officer says that Remy had been asking about the drug lord's stolen money before the drug lord knew it was missing. Patrick then questions Beatrice's husband Lionel in a bar and pieces together that Lionel and Remy had conspired to stage a fake kidnapping in order to take the drug money for themselves and to save Amanda from her mother's neglectful parenting. At that point, Remy (trying to cover for his earlier mistake) enters the bar, while wearing a latex mask and holding a shotgun, and stages a robbery. He points the shotgun at Lionel's head, but the bartender shoots Remy twice in the back. Remy flees and is pursued by Patrick to the rooftop of a nearby building, where he dies.

Patrick is questioned by the police about Remy's death, where he learns that the police never had a phone transcript like the one that Captain Doyle had shown him prior to the botched exchange. Patrick and Angie drive to Captain Doyle's home, where Patrick finds Amanda living happily with Doyle and his wife. A flashback reveals that Doyle was part of the phony kidnapping all along. Patrick threatens to call the authorities, but Doyle attempts to convince him that Amanda is better off living with them than with her drug-addicted, careless mother. Patrick leaves and discusses the choices with Angie, who says she will leave him if he calls the police, since Amanda is much better off with the Doyles. In the next scenes, the police arrive, Doyle is arrested, Amanda is returned to her mother amidst heavy publicity, and Patrick and Angie break up.

Patrick later visits Amanda and Helene as Helene is about to leave on a date with someone she met because of the publicity - at the same time making a play for Patrick herself, stating "If [Angie] don't get smart, I'll take you". She informs Patrick that Beatrice has been forbidden from visiting the Helene's house, and is upset at the outcome of the situation (her husbands' arrest), which Patrick remarks on him never being compensated for his services. She has no babysitter and just plans on having a neighbor check on Amanda, although the neighbor is not yet home. Patrick volunteers to watch Amanda, who is holding her old doll and watching television. As the movie ends, Patrick asks Amanda about Mirabelle, only to have Amanda inform him that the doll's name is "Annabelle", implying that Helene did not even know the name of her daughter's favorite doll.



Released on October 19, 2007, the film has grossed an estimated $20,300,218 domestically and $13,909,570 in other territories for a worldwide total of $34,209,788 as of July 6]], 2008.

The UK release was originally set for December 28, 2007 but was pushed back to June 6, 2008 due to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

The Malaysianmarker release was originally set for September 20, 2007, but was postponed to March 27, 2008, due to the kidnapping and murder of eight-year-old Nurin Jazlin.

The film was released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc on February 12, 2008. Extras include commentary by Ben Affleck and Aaron Stockard, deleted scenes, and two behind-the-scenes featurettes. The film was released on DVD and Blu-ray in Australia on September 10, 2008.

Critical reception

The film was a favorite among critics and audiences alike. The movie won an assortment of awards, including Best First Film for Ben Affleck from the Austin Film Critics Association. As of March 22, 2009, the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported 94 percent of critics gave the film positive reviews, based on 163 reviews. The review aggregator Metacritic reported the film had an average score of 72 out of 100, based on 34 reviews.

Peter Travers of Rolling Stone raved "The brothers Affleck both emerge triumphant in this mesmerizing thriller," while the New York Post called it "a twisty, morally ambiguous and satisfying neo-noir." Patrick Radden Keefe criticized the film for overstating the case in an otherwise laudable attempt to "capture Boston in all its sordid glory," writing that "The result is not so much what Mean Streets did for New Yorkmarker as what Deliverance did for Appalachia."In the UKmarker, Gone Baby Gone received extremely positive reviews, including a five-star rating from Chris Tookey of the Daily Mail.

In an issue of Vrij Nederland, Dutch critic and writer Arnon Grunberg called the book good, but the movie better, saying "Gone Baby Gone might not be a perfect film, but it's definitely an important one, if only to raise the question: 'What is home?'".

Top ten lists

The film appeared on 65 critics' top ten lists of the best films of 2007.



  • Alliance of Women Film Journalists Association

  • Houston Film Critics Associaton

  • San Diego Film Critics Circle

  • St. Louis Gateway Critics

  • Utah Film Critics


  • Dallas Fort-Worth Film Critics Association

  • Detroit Film Critics Society

  • Online Film Critics Association


  1. BoxOffice Mojo

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