Journalist Mikael Blomkvist (Michael Nyqvist) and rebellious computer hacker Lisbeth Salander (Noomi Rapace) team up to investigate the unsolved disappearance of wealthy Henrik Vanger’s (Sven-Bertil Taube) teen niece (Ewa Fröling), only to uncover dark secrets about Vanger’s powerful family. Niels Arden Oplev directs this Swedish thriller based on the first novel from Stieg Larsson’s best-selling trilogy.
I haven’t read the book, a synopsis of the book, or even a synopsis of the movie before renting it. I thought the title was interesting enough to warrant a rental. What was I expecting? From the title I was expecting an action film a la Angelina Jolie in Salt. What I got instead was a compelling hardcore drama-mystery-thriller.
What was difficult to handle in this film is not the subtitles, but the violence against women. There is graphic violence against the “Girl”, Lisbeth, in the title of the film, as well as referenced violence against several other females. The dialog, and descriptions of what happens to certain characters, are also difficult to stomach. It is like watching a hardcore episode of Criminal Minds or Law and Order: SVU. But then Lisbeth is one smart tough girl. She is not afraid of the pain she goes through, and certainly is not shy in dealing out a violent barrage if need be. Her complexity - a product of what she’s been through - is alluded to throughout the film. I’m sure it’s dealt with more thoroughly in the book(s).
I hear they are doing a US remake of this film. I would be hesitant to see it. But then I hear David Fincher is helming the remake. Either he or Christopher Nolan would do a worthy remake worth, at the least, checking out.
Rating: Full Admission