Fincher is an accomplished visual stylist as seen in his previous features and this is his best and most mature film because he uses it more sparingly here. There are a few of his trademark slightly off-angle shots and other creative visual tricks but he does not let his style overshadow his rich substance this time around, as he did with the vastly overrated Fight Club. He knows he has a sprawling crime story to tell with tact and respect and his directing of suspense is tighter here because it builds naturally out of circumstance and investigative details rather than simply visual trickery.
When it comes to knowing about a serial killer that was never caught, I’m personally ambivalent towards the wild buzz surrounding the real crimes. It is appropriate that much effort is devoted to nabbing the suspect. But when is it is finally to no avail, there is an unsettling sense of unfairness and sadness that the killer not only got away with committing evil but gained wretched attention for it. That’s an unspoken feeling the people in Zodiac will harbor for the rest of their lives.