All Good Things – DVD Review

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All Good Things - DVD Cover

 

Inspired by the most notorious missing person’s case in New York history, All Good Things is a love story and murder mystery set against the backdrop of a New York real estate dynasty in the 1980s. The drama portrayed in the Andrew Jarecki film was inspired by the story of Robert Durst, scion of the wealthy Durst family.  Mr. Durst was suspected but never tried for killing his wife Kathie who disappeared in 1982 and was never found.

There were reportedly several internal problems getting the film originally to theatres, but the wait was worth it as stars Ryan Gosling, Kirsten Dunst and Frank Langella give some of their strongest performances to date. Notably, Dunst gives a strikingly mature performance as the beautiful and conflicted Katie McCarthy. This also marks the first time Dunst appears on screen topless, although she’s teased in film and photos for years.

You can’t help but feel for Katie as she faces her violent and controlling husband David Marks (Gosling) through a long and troubled relationship. Gosling was both debonair and creepy as the son of New York’s real estate mogul. The pair really worked as a truly troubled couple living out a relationship that neither of them really wanted.

In the story, Katie goes back to medical school while trying to understand David's mood swings and unwillingness to have children. As she becomes increasingly independent, David mysteriously turns more violent and controlling. Family secrets are slowly revealed as Katie disappears without a trace. Years later, when David's best friend turns up dead, the 20-year-old case is re-opened, with David as the main suspect, and the Marks family’s dark secrets pave the way to a disturbing truth.

Although the movie sets the tone for the audience to come to a pretty obvious conclusion about Katie’s disappearance, the real life story is still considered an open case with no further leads.

Because All Good Things is based on a pretty famous series of real life events, there isn’t a lot of freedom the filmmakers had to add a bit more zing to the plot, so the majority of the films success is reliant on the cast, who shine in what could have been a rather drab murder mystery.