Why You Root for Gone Girl’s Amy Dunne

Gone Girl’s Amy Dunne (Rosamund Pike) has been called a lot of things, both in her world and in ours. Ever since director David Fincher brought Gillian Flynn’s bestselling novel to the screen in 2014, we’ve remained torn over whether Amy is an antihero or a villain—a feminist icon or an irredeemable monster. The divided reaction to Amy Dunne speaks to our own feelings about female rage, a notably quiet kind of anger that we normally expect women to suppress. As Gone Girl shows us through the story of a woman whose bottled-up disappointment in her husband (Ben Affleck) gradually curdles into murderous resentment, this kind of repressed anger isn’t just common—it’s accepted. Here’s our Take on Amy Dunne as an exaggerated embodiment of female rage, what our reaction to her says about our own gendered expectations, and why Amy’s revenge doesn’t have to be empowering to feel cathartic.